Suzane’s story

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Continuing our series of ‘in their own words’ blogs, one of the girls currently living in the transit house has written an account of her own life and her hopes for the future. *names and personal details have been changed to protect the child.    Hello, My name is Suzane and I am 14 years old. I was born without a father. My mum never got married and I never knew who my dad was. I have half brothers and sisters, but they all lived with their fathers so I was alone with mum. When I was six, my mum started to get sick. The neighbors told me it was HIV and they all hated us and sometimes they even beat up my mum. I stopped school in first grade to work on the market because my mum could not work anymore.  When my mum died, my grandmother told me it was my fault because I’m a witch. I had no place to go so I ended up on the streets. I was walking around the market and crying and some girls, who were also homeless, asked what happened and they promised to protect me. They told me about Kimbilio but it was very far and it was late.  That night, we slept under a tree and woke up when it was still dark. We walked for hours until we found the Kimbilio day center. The pastor’s wife gave us soap and clean clothes. We washed, ate and played. Ever since that day, I kept on going to the day center.  I also often traveled to a town near by where a friend of mine had a room where we could sleep safely.  Two weeks ago, one of the carers and the pastor of Kimbilio found us there and brought us to the Kimbilio transit center for girls. At the Kimbilio transit center, we are learning how to read and write. I am very happy to learn how to read and write because I would like to write an autobiography at some point. I want people to know how hard life on the streets is and to change people’s opinions about street children. I want to tell people that we are not witches, thieves or street dogs. We are children just like all other children and all we need is love. I hope one day I can tell this story in schools, churches and to my own children.  One day, I hope to find a kind husband and to have children of my own.

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