Stolen Innocence

This past week has been extremely eventful for me. I experienced going out into the field with the mobile health clinic, I taught a first aid class with Cassie to the vocational girls, and we learned some Swahili songs with preschoolers at the KMET educational center to occupy them while their parents had a parent-teacher meeting. All of this was extremely rewarding in that I love learning more about KMET and all the services they provide. I have decided to work the most with the Sisterhood for Change project because I’m interested in learning more about what they do and how they’re making a positive difference in the lives of girls and women throughout Kenya.

One case that I most recently learned about has been stuck in my mind, because of the insidious nature of it. These facts may not be entirely correct but this is what I’ve been told. There is a 9 year-old girl whose parents separated and she was left to live with her father. Her father defiled her continuously and know one knew until she became pregnant. A 9 year-old girl, pregnant. Once the pregnancy was discovered she lived at KMET for a bit before she was sent to a rescue facility for the duration of her pregnancy. But here’s the catch: this particular rescue facility only takes pregnant girls in, so once the girl is no longer pregnant what happens to her? Well, the girl has given birth and miraculously, without complications for a 9-year-old body. I’m waiting with bated breath to learn of her fate. Apparently there were also issues with trying to put the baby up for adoption because it’s a long and difficult process through the government. But again, what will happen to this presumably extremely traumatized girl? Will she be counseled? Will she ever be fully healed? Will she stay at KMET until she is ready to go back to school? Even if she is ready to go back to school who will she live with? Does she have other family who will take her in? It is these questions that continue to swirl around my mind on a continuous loop. I learned recently that she is safe and just wants to go back to school, hopefully she can get a scholarship or something at an all girl’s boarding school. As for her father, he is not in jail yet, but hopefully will be soon and for a very long time. I hope to learn more about this girl’s outcome and am thankful that she is currently safe, and will hopefully recover from the horrors that she has experienced. Horrible cases like this happen to girls all over the world which shows how much work still needs to be done in regards to advocacy and basic human rights for girls.

Aubrey Gedeon ’17
Kisumu, Kenya

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