By Our Correspondent | Opening Doorz Editorial | March 12, 2018


“Had it not been for the love, care and support I received at Shelter Don Bosco, it would not have been possible for me to start out on my own. I owe my confidence in life to Shelter!”

— Ejaz Khan, now 25-years-old, who was rescued by Shelter Don Bosco as a child.


Name: Ejaz Khan
Age: 25
Place of birth: Mumbai, Maharashtra
With the centre from: 2005-2011
Family background: Does not recall

Ejaz ran away from home with his friends when he was just a child. He ended up at Thane Railway station and began living on the streets in the neighbouring area. Since the past three years, he has been working as a driver partner for Uber.

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Troubled times…
Ejaz ran away from home with his friends when he was just a child. He ended up at Thane Railway Station and began living on the streets in the neighbouring area. On one such sleepless night, he came across the Asha Deep Foundation’s Night Shelter where he was told to go to Shelter Don Bosco if he wanted to start schooling and have a place to stay as well. After spending the night at Asha Deep’s Shelter, the boy walked into Shelter Don Bosco, Wadala, the next morning.  It was a strange feeling as he was greeted with boys like him who were happily going around their day at this institution they called ‘home’. Instantly, he decided that this was where he was going to stay and pursue his desire of completing his education.

Working towards transformation…
Ejaz could not have asked for a better continuation in education as he was soon enrolled in the prestigious Don Bosco High School, Matunga, where he completed his Std X exams. He then took admission in Khalsa College, Mumbai. He studied till the second year of Arts but stopped his education after that as he wanted to start working. Even though he halted his studies in favour of earning an income, Ejaz knew very well that it was a good education facilitated by Shelter that had stood him in good stead, and it was the reason that he was independent in life Now, he aims to go back to college and earn his B.A. degree.

Saying thank you…
Ejaz is forever thankful to Shelter and to the staff who always pushed him to grow and to do well in life. Not only did Shelter offer him opportunities and exposure but it also provided him with a conducive environment to succeed. To him, Shelter is a symbol of kindness and love, and the staff members have always led by example.

Life  for Ejaz hasn’t stopped at just being as the one who has only received as a Shelter boy. He has wholeheartedly helped other boys too, of this foundation. Young boys often come up to him and ask him for advice and he tries to help them by speaking from his own experience. In some extreme cases, he does not even hesitate in providing financial aid to those struggling boys. Moreover, he has convinced some of his friends to join the Uber network of drivers just like he has.

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As a successful entrepreneur, Ejaz stands as a beacon of inspiration to the current boys at Shelter. He signifies to them that with the right guidance and with hard work as your companion, nothing is impossible. His days at Shelter are ones he remembers with fondness. Never, even once did he feel out of place or sad and lonely as everyday this home of his was filled with activities from the time he woke up in the morning.

Seeing the Priests work selflessely day in and day out he wonders what motivates and gives them the strength to look after the “filth of the street” as he puts it. Had it not been for the love, care and support he received at Shelter, it would not have been possible for him to start out on his own. He owes his confidence in life to Shelter!

(From the book Forever Grateful to Don Bosco: Success Stories of the Young at Risk)

Also Read: The story of Thomson Fernandes

 

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