No child should be left to wander the streets alone at night.
2-year-old Adam* was found walking along a busy highway at 3am. He was alone, barefoot and dressed in pyjamas. The police had no idea where he had come from, and there had been no reports that evening of a missing child. It wasn’t until the next day that Adam’s mother Chloe* was tracked down – she didn’t even know her son had disappeared.
Adam had been living with his mum in a small house with 13 strangers. Most of these adults were known drug users and it was clear that Adam was at great risk of physical harm.
Adam was born into a life of homelessness.
Sadly, children who are homeless, like Adam, are especially vulnerable to abuse and neglect.
You could tell Adam was a deeply troubled child. He wouldn’t seek comfort if he hurt himself.
Jodi, Barnardos Centre Manager.
After coming into the care of Barnardos Australia, there were initial observations of Adam avoiding eye contact, walking on tiptoes and not seeking comfort when he hurt himself.
These red flags resulted in a referral to a paediatrician who diagnosed him with autism. With this diagnosis, ongoing support is needed to help Adam develop social and communication skills. We are also helping Adam learn to trust adults again.
Please give generously and support the long journey towards healing for children like Adam.
You have the power to help keep children like Adam safe and heal from trauma and neglect.
*Models are used and names changed to protect the privacy of our children.