Patience* is 11 years old and comes from a village near the city of Jinja. She lived with her auntie because, after her father had sadly died in a car accident, her mother had remarried another man who did not want Patience around.
A tragic journey
Life was very difficult for Patience. She frequently suffered a lot of abuse and discrimination from her auntie and cousins and therefore decided to run away to look for her mother in the hopes that she would be welcomed back if she explained her mistreatment.
Unfortunately, whilst making this journey and staying on the streets, she met a taxi driver who pretended to help with a lift but instead raped her. She was found injured and hopeless by a member of the community who took her to the police station. The Child Protection Unit there thankfully had a good relationship with S.A.L.V.E. International.
We came and helped Patience with her recovery, treating her medical needs and providing food and a safe place to stay at our residential site. We listened to her distressing story and Patience received counselling and rehabilitation.
Safety and hope
Although S.A.L.V.E managed to trace her family members, Patience was still traumatised and hated her family since they were the ones who had made her so sad she had to run away. Therefore, sympathetic to her wishes and needs, we made plans to resettle her with a foster family selected and counselled by S.A.L.V.E. staff. Patience and the foster family have been continually supported by S.A.L.V.E and have also attended our Business Empowerment Programme to help them to have the ability to care for Patience.
Patience is now happily settled with her foster family and the S.A.L.V.E team are continuing to work on rebuilding relationships with her own family. We hope to reunite them when Patience is ready and willing to forgive and when they will also be able to commit to giving her proper care and love; until then she is settled and safe in a good family home: something we believe every child has the right to be.
Thank you to everyone who believes in our vision for there to be ‘No Street Called Home’.
*Name changed in line with our Child Protection Policy