With living in streets being the most viable option for someone, you can guess that life is tough for such an individual. This is the life of hundreds of people in Nairobi, with girls and young mothers not spared in this endeavor.
14-year-old Fatuma Ahmed (not her real name) is a young mother living in the streets of Gikomba, Nairobi with her two-year-old daughter. At such a tender age she has had to adapt to the tough street life. “It’s not safe living in the streets especially during the night, to protect yourself one needs to sleep with a trouser” says Fatuma.
Girls and young mothers living in the streets are exposed to many dangers, not to mention rape and other forms of assault.
The nights are cold and it’s even colder on an empty stomach and worse when one is not just feeding one mouth but has a young one who is dependent on them.
This is the tale of not just Fatuma but plenty more who are dependent on the streets for their lives. Each day these group of young women wake up with anticipation that with a new day there will be new tidings, however in most instances they are awakened by their worst nightmares.
Most end up depending on well-wishers for money, food and clothing. Sometimes things don’t work out as one anticipated and some are forced to get into crime and prostitution just to eke a living.
Unfortunately, they are not the only ones at risk. Their young ones are at risk of being dragged into the same kind of life. Children do learn by example, especially of the adults around them, thus the need to initiate change to reverse this situation.
Koinonia Community has made a name for herself by striving and working to alleviate the suffering of the little ones in difficult situations and the marginalized, for over 20 years. Koinonia has established a number of rehabilitation facilities and homes where these children receive their basic needs and psycho-social support, where many regain hope in life and become respectable members of the society.
In the month of August 2018, Salama Community Resource Center was officially opened by Koinonia Community founder, Father Kizito. The center was established to cater for young mothers by equipping them with skills that will allow them to make a decent living.
Each of these young women have dreams of a brighter future. During the launch of the center they got to share their aspirations with some aspiring to head back to school, acquire technical skills and others are onto starting up businesses.
In life we receive kindness from different people including strangers and the best way to pay this kindness is paying it forward through being of impact to the less fortunate in the community.