If there's one thing all children have in common, it's their innocence. Of course, some children behave worse than others, and many experience pain and heartbreak at far too young an age, but that shouldn't stop us from providing kids with the childhood they deserve. Anja Ring Branch Loven, a Danish relief worker, saw that children in Nigeria were falling victim to an awful superstition that labelled them as witches in the eyes of society. These young individuals were abandoned, tortured and, in some cases, killed as a result of the paranoia. Anja knew she couldn't sit idly by while many children were being abandoned without any way to receive future education or care.
This heroic worker wasn't always traveling to third world countries and getting involved desperate situations, though. In 2011, Anja was working as a store manager, but everything changed when she took a three-month-long trip to Africa. Over the course of those 90 days, Anja did relief work and resolved that the rest of her life would be dedicated to helping those in Africa receive the education and love they deserved. It's a good thing she resigned from her job before departing on her trip, because she never returned to her old life.
In 2012, Anja founded DINNødhjælp, a non-profit dedicated to helping poor children, especially those accused of being witches, have the best life possible. In an interview with the Nordjyske Herald-Tribune, she said that these children "are the future of Africa, and why it is so important that they get an education." One of those important children is Hope, a 2-year-old who had spent eight months wandering the streets alone when Anja and her team found him on January 31st. Her relationship with this young boy perfectly represents everything Anja and her charity do for the children of Nigeria. Check out the photos below to see their encounter and how much better Hope is doing today.