Beneficiaries Success Stories
The depiction of the women's stories sheds light on their difficult past and continuous hardships that they encountered on a daily basis. These accounts bring out the reality of each individual; that they are more than just another statistic of poverty, abuse, and exploitation. The stories also display the considerable hopelessness that existed and the perfect timing of the Centre's involvement in their lives.
TANYA (Not her real Name)
Tanya's mother gave birth to her out of wedlock and left her unattended at her grandmother's home when she was only 8 months. Her grandmother thought her mother was in the neighborhood but she never came back. Her grandmother and uncles were bitter about her mother's actions and would frequently turn their anger on Tanya. When Tanya turned 10 years her relatives refused to educate her and sent her away to find her mother. She wandered in the neighborhood not knowing where to go. A lady, who knew where her mother was married, bought for her a bus ticket to Eldama Ravine where her mother lived. She gave Tanya the directions and luckily at the Eldama Ravine centre she found her mother.
She learnt that her mother had two more children from her current marriage. Her joy was cut short by her parents constant fights and one day her mother ran away and left Tanya in this home. Tanya was told by her step father that she did not belong to his household and should therefore follow her mother. At this point, Tanya left and decided to go to the home of her Sudanese friends who lived in the same location. During the following Christmas, this new family promised Tanya a better life in Sudan and she agreed to join them. In Sudan she was forced to change her name and never say she is Kenyan. Tanya's traffickers wanted to marry her off to an old man and she managed to escape. Tanya was later rescued by a Kenyan man who together with the Kenyan community in South Sudan assisted her come back to Kenya through the intervention of a story written by the Nation newspaper. CDTD alerted the International Organization for Migration (IOM) about the plight of Tanya and another girl after which a joint operation was formed with UNICEF and the Kenyan Community in South Sudan to bring the girls to TAGS for assistance.
At TAGS Tanya was counseled, taken to hospital for treatment as she and the other girl were sickly and in poor health. On the recommendation of the TAGS teacher, Tanya was taken to a boarding school in Kitale where she joined Primary Class 6 after being out of school for 1 year. Tanya graduated from class 8 after sitting for the national KCPE examinations in 2015. She joined form 1 in 2016 and is very glad to be in high school. Tanya is resilient, hardworking and very determined to make it in life. She does not see any other path of achieving her goals other than education. Tanya enjoys singing and is very outgoing and welcoming. Her dream is to study agriculture. Through her own initiative, while at the shelter, Tanya helps other girls with their studies and also helps out in the kitchen.
Tanya's family re-union has failed because her mother has refused to take her in citing that she has a man in the house who cannot accept her. Tanya wept bitterly when this happened and returned to TAGS ashamed that she had no home to go back to. Next, TAGS traced Tanya's grandmother who also refused to take her in because "alikuwa na guka mwingine" in Tanya's words (she had remarried).
Inspite of all the above tribulations, Tanya's spirit is unbroken and she is looking forward to completing her high school education and to build a life for herself.
JANE (Not her real name)
Jane dropped out of school when she was only 17 years old while in high school in her village. As a result of the 'shame' she had brought on her family, her father sent her away from home. She had no option but to enter into early marriage where she faced both physical and emotional abuse from her husband. One day, Jane decided to run away from her marital home after losing 2 babies at infancy within 3 years as she thought that something was strange! Out of frustration she opted to work as a domestic worker in Nairobi because she could not go back home where she was treated as a social outcast. Luckily a Good Samaritan informed her about the CDTD program of empowering girls and women in domestic labor. At the CDTD program, Jane was trained as a domestic worker but her passion for education did not die; she would regret and weep whenever she met girls in uniform going to school. Because of her passion for education Jane was enrolled in the TAGS program which gave her a second chance to go back to school fulltime. Initially she used part of her savings from her domestic job to pay for school. However, CDTD started paying her school fees after seeing her determination to succeed in education.
At the new school, which gives a second chance to young mothers, Jane was enrolled in Form 3 in 2013. The TAGS program supported Jane to pay her full school fees and during school holidays she worked to earn her upkeep. School was not easy for Jane considering that she had been out of school for 7 years which means she had to work really hard. In 2014 she sat for her KCSE and got a C+. She could not hide her joy and happiness because going back to school made her realize her dream of becoming a professional. Owing to her success in school Jane reconciled with her father who is now very proud of her. This year, Jane was fortunate enough to acquire a government scholarship (partial) at the prestigious Eldoret Polytechnic where she is undertaking a diploma in Accounting.
Jane is an inspiration to other girls at TAGS and we wish her the best in her endeavors.
In the suburbs of Adams Arcade, comes a happy sound of children playing and calling their nanny to play with them in one of the apartments. A kind and loving voice calls them and insist that it's time to go inside the house and put on some warm clothes, the children give in but not before making their aunt promise to show them how to weave. The voice belongs to Caroline a 22 year old house manager who is employed to cook and take care of the children and the apartment.
When one enters the house where Caroline works she is struck by the beautiful decorations made of wool, like the table matts on the dining table and the many designs of the floor mats; this is the handwork of Caroline who is talented in weaving shawls, table mats, floor mats, kikois, bed and curtain runners.
Caroline comes from Kitale and her mother died when she was 2 years old and she was raised by hergrandmother under difficult conditions. Rejected by her father who remarried and abandoned her she had no one else to turn to apart from her elderly grandmother who had no source of income. She managed to study up to class seven before dropping out of school as her poor grandmother had become too old and weak to provide for her and her cousins. She was the only child from her mother and had no one to look up to.
In 2006 Caroline was convinced by a neighbor and was brought to Nairobi to work as a domestic worker where she worked under very difficult conditions and moved from one household to another. She was mistreated and denied her basic rights in every house she worked in. In 2011 she heard from one of the house help about CDTD where domestic workers were trained and their rights defended. With the little money that she had saved she decided to talk to the CEO Ms. Edith Murogo who listened to her story and sympathized with her. Ms. Edith decided to allow her enroll in the training of basic homecare Management, where she was taught Childcare, Cooking, First Aid, Labor education and Life Skills.
In February 2011 Caroline decided to enroll with Beacon of Hope on Ongata Rongai for a certificate course in in weaving and was trained in weaving. Caroline also heard of another training being offered by Techno Serve /CDTD, which was to train young girls to become entrepreneurs. This training was funded by Nike Foundation through TechnoServe to help train young girls on entrepreneurship, the training entailed how to spot business opportunities and utilize them to the best of their abilities. This program was also started to create self-employment to the young girls who had passed through the training.