Sunday 7 December 2014

Twelve more girls arrived during the night..

Our Safe House struggles to cope with the demand from girls refusing Female Genital Mutilation in December's cutting season..

Rhobi Samwelly, our local rep in Mara province, is an FGM survivor herself, and the drive behind our successful Safe House campaign.  A week into the cutting season, with the building unfinished, they are struggling to cope with 80 girls seeking refuge, with 12 arriving last night alone..

Here is a message I received from Rhobi via What's App this morning..
The situation is challenging! The safe house can accommodate 40 girls but now we have more and we are still receiving girls in order to protect them. So we are also using the Vocational Training Centre classes to accommodate other girls. We have only 40 mattress. Still the safe house doesn't have a kitchen or dining hall. 
The situation of girls when arriving is not good, that some they don't have shoes, with torn clothes,  some are psychologically affected. So we need some basic needs like clothes, shoes, toothbrushes, soap,  sanitary towels etc. Another challenge is that the safe house doesn't have a car which could help managing collecting girls from different areas without breaking down while the girls are inside! This is very dangerous in the bush girls could be taken away to their parents for FGM.  The increased number of girls in the centre affects everything planned eg. food, bedsheets, blankets  etc. I would like to thank the local churches and mosques which are contributing food for girls in the centre. 

Some of girls are orphans  and are in secondary schools in their wards! Their relatives threaten them if they refuse to undergo FGM and threaten not to pay their school fees and other needs. We thank the government for provision of security from the villages where the girls are collected to the safe house. 

The girls received at the safe house are still in Secondary schools and primary schools. We have started to provide tuition for them at the safe house but we still do not have enough funds to pay the teachers.
Thank you very much for the supporting of the safe house as it is important for girls protection. We have received nine girls from Tarime district. 

We would be happy to receive more support in order to overcome the challenges. 

If you would like to support the Safe House you can do so here.  

And here is a message from one of the girls at the Safe House:
My name is Angelina Nginge, I am  15 years old and I come from Magatini village at Kenyamonta Ward in Serengeti district. This year my father wanted to conduct FGM on me. Due to the trainings that I got at school on the effects of FGM through the Anglican church Diocese of Mara, I decided to escape from home with the help of one of my teachers. I went to the safe house with the help of my teacher who provided a bedroom to sleep on the night I escaped home .Currently I am a form  one student at ACT-BUNDA Girls secondary school. I sincerely thank the ACT MARA for the safe house if it was not for them I do not know where would I have gone.