In early April 2022 we had a referral of a teen girl who was four months pregnant and homeless. (We’ll call her Angela.) Unfortunately, we had no available beds to bring her into Touch the Slum, but we were able to refer her to another program called Wamukisa.
Angela lived at Wamukisa while she was pregnant, and gave birth at Amani, who offers free childbirth to low-risk teen girls.
Unfortunately, Wamukisa doesn’t keep girls once they’ve given birth, and Amani only keeps them for labor, delivery, and a short recovery period.
That left Angela homeless once again, and she’s spent the last 6 months bouncing around between friends and evictions.
Unfortunately, this is commonplace.
Angela is homeless now and came to the compound today. Fortunately, we have a bed this time and are arranging for an at least temporary stay as we work out if she has any family she can return to.
Girls like Angela face a huge amount of fear and uncertainty. They have not been to school and have little or no family (Uganda has a huge population of orphans and the youngest population in the world, with 65% under 18). This leaves them open to exploitation and abuse, disease, and potential death on the street.
While we don’t know yet if Angela will stay with us, we try to minimize the stress and anxiety of a life of homelessness for our girls. Our residents are with us an average of a year, and don’t move out until they have the skills necessary to earn an income they can live on. They have access to Touch the Slum forever – the clinic, the daycare, even dropping by for lunch.
They have a safe place to call home, and a safe community in which to thrive.
I’ll keep you posted on Angela’s story – you are the reason girls like Angela can have a safe place to come for help, whether during an emergency or for a year.
PS You can help us help girls like Angela by becoming a monthly donor today! Just click the button – it’s quick and easy.