On new year’s Day, I had a chat with young girls from our village in Kisumu. Among them was Evelyne barely 19 years old. She had a baby with her. She arrived late for the talk. At least she arrived. She took the sticky note to participate in our exercise.
As an icebreaker, we were writing our names, our year of birth, our age and the class we were expecting to go to. Evelyne sat her baby on the ground and proceeded with our activity. She listened keenly on the talk we were having. Evelyne even asked questions. She, like the other girls, has dreams. She wrote on the sticky note that she was going to form 1.
After our talk, when everyone was enjoying the snacks and commenting on the forum, Evelyne said that such talks are important to have with young girls. Evelyne divulged that she had an accident, pointing at her baby. I tried to correct her that she had a beautiful baby boy, not an accident.
Evelyne told us that it was her teacher who impregnated her in class 8. That she sat for her KCPE while pregnant. She went on to say that she refers to her baby as an accident because she would have been in form 3 now had she not gotten pregnant.
I tried encouraging her that all is not lost. I told Evelyne that I was also a teenage mom, but I furthered my studies. That she has a bright future.
Later that day, my cousin’s wife told me that Evelyne’s family are not sure whether they will get money to take her back to school. However much she wishes to go to school, this dream might not come true.
Today we had a chat with Evelyne. She came home to give me her contacts. I asked her why she wanted to go to school far from the village- her aunt’s place. She said she just wanted to go far from the place where she was judged and was the topic of gossips. “So and so’s daughter got pregnant in primary school”. Never mind the teacher who got her pregnant.
It is because of girls like Evelyne that Mwanadada exists. We want to keep girls in school by giving them comprehensive sexuality education. (We did not make it in the Startupper challenge by the way.) Thanks for all your votes.
Evelyne needs to go to school. I took her contacts and will be following up on her progress. If you would like to be part of Evelyne going to school, you can get in touch with us on firstname.lastname@example.org