Thanks to your help, in Melilla there are some days when we can celebrate real victories!
Achievements that transform lives, that drive us forward:
Like the night we accompanied Sami to the port so that he could legally embark to the Peninsula thanks to the legal support of our partner on the ground.
Sami did not spend that night in the harbour with his colleagues watching the boats leave, and he did not risk his life trying to sneak into one of them.
After 5 years alone in Melilla, that night he will manage to live what he has longed for so much, crossing to the Peninsula. And, he will do it legally.
Everything he has goes in a small red rucksack fitted to his back. Some clothes and several phone numbers written down on a piece of paper. He travels without a mobile phone.
The most valuable thing: his documents with an expiry date. They are few. They are pressed to his chest in a transparent plastic folder. It gives him security and inevitably reminds whoever looks at him that he is still a child.
In the boarding line, talking families, workers coming back home, tired couples, carefree friends and him. Alone. With bright eyes and the feeling that he is moving too slowly.
He lives with the logical anxiety of someone who wishes and fears at the same time. Of someone who - expelled on his 18th birthday from his Reception Centre for Minors for having come of age - knows himself lucky to have achieved a documentation without which he would be stuck in Melilla sine die...but who at the same time faces the vertigo of not knowing very well what will come next.
Silence. Backpack. Folder, while he holds his breath waiting for the police to check that his documentation is in order.
And it is.
He confirms it to us by looking back. He smiles and raises his index and middle fingers in a V.
We respond by raising our arms in an explosion of joy that we do not want to contain.
Through the glass we see him advancing in his boarding.
We smile quietly, lacking words to translate the synchrony of happiness, bitterness and wishes of good luck for him in his new stage.
A taste of salt in the mouth, renewed energy in the soul and the conviction that we are looking at the best example of law enforcement as a transforming element. Here. Where it seemed impossible. In Melilla.
It's time to get on the boat.
Synchronized hands to our hearts.
Courage. Good luck, my friend.
الشكر لله alshukr lilah!