On January 30, 2016, a Danish aid worker named Anja Ringgren Loven came across a harrowing sight on the streets of Nigeria. There, the DINNødhjælp founder discovered a young boy named Hope in a dire situation—the starving child was certainly on the edge of death. Abandoned by his parents, the 2-year-old was emaciated after fending for himself for eight months; a fact captured in one heartbreaking photograph. In it, Loven is bending down to give him water from a bottle. After that scene, she wrapped him in a blanket and took him to the nearest hospital.
The road to recovery involved extensive medical treatments, but thanks to generous donations from people around the world—more than one million dollars—Hope has since made an amazing recovery. Eight weeks after being found, he had gained weight and was smiling, making him nearly unrecognizable from the same boy just two months prior.
Hope has continued to move upward and onward from his rough start in life. Loven recently posted an update—almost a year to the day—of him clad in bright red pants and a plaid top as he was off to his first day of school. The two recreated their now-famous photo, but the circumstances are totally different. Now, Hope lives in the DINNødhjælp orphanage, looking happy and healthy, surrounded by people who love and care for him. It’s amazing what a difference this type of compassion makes.