Scraps of hope


Manish is a polio-disabled boy, who flees from the provinces to Freetown during the war. He joins there a group of disabled beggars and starts a new life in a dilapidated house in the city center. His life takes a new turn when two mysterious young people show up in the squat. The three become inseparable and they set to reorganize the place to make it more habitable. Soon, they form a musical group. They call it “The Walpoleans” after the name of the squat: Walpole Street.

When the building is evicted, most of the inhabitants get scattered but the musicians continue together. The Walpoleans thrive and dream of a world tour. Manish becomes the lead singer. He returns to school, his future is promising. After 8 years of absence, he is ready to see his family again. Suddenly, however, black clouds appear on the bright sky.

Manish’ personal story is embedded in the recent history of Sierra Leone. The country and the boy seem to traverse the same circle of suffering, hope and delusion. Between the individual and the national struggles, the film follows also the story of various disabled communities. The polio houses which survived after the eviction of Walpole Street are populated by strong characters, willing to hope for a better future, and ready to fight for their dreams. Despite the ever-presence of poverty, violence, and death, all hope is not lost. In the world of the polio-houses the spirit of Walpole Street lives on.