I have never had such a life changing experience like the one I had a couple of days ago. I don’t think I will ever forget because it awaken a spirit in me . I don’t think I have ever thanked God for my life like I did that day . I mean , we are so fortunate to have a good life ,well , despiteL the hard times we go through like the month of January.
What comes across your mind when you meet a street child ? Do you at first think that they will snatch your bag and run away? Or beg for a coin or two for one and two ? What do you always think of them? Perhaps filthy and unworthy,right ?
She was dressed in fitting dark blue jeans short , with a pink vest ,jungle green Marvin and pink airmax shoes or ‘sports shoes ‘ , you may know it easily . Her clothes were neat and you couldn’t tell any problem in her . Other boys in her gang were following her ,since she was courageous enough to beg for food and whatever they could eat .
My friends and I were meeting for some meeting at the park that day . As usual , there are many hawkers ,beggers ,preachers and all sorts of people who stopped by .
Do you ever wonder why many people always make their way to resting areas especially the parks to just sleep ? Sometimes we don’t even imagine ourselves sleeping under those shades but to some ,that’s a home they know of .
“Aunty , nisaidie na hii crisps zako,” the young girl we had been watching all along ,asked .
There is this reply we all have whenever we meet beggers on the street and we can’t leave them a coin or two . Normally we say, “si leo” but on this day , I was good .
“shika, lakini usiende Kwanza” I requested her to stay around for a chat .
“Sasa unaitwaje ?”I asked her ,her name.
”Joyce, but wananiita Joycee” She replied .
she was so so courageous to talk about herself despite the effect of glue she was sniffing .
I remember how touching it was when she told us the story of her life . She just turned 18 recently but her past is one she may not want to remember at all . Her mother passed away and was left with an uncaring dad.
”Where is your dad? ” I remember asking her .
”He is just there ,”she replied
”He is not supportive at all, that is why I ran away from home .”
It was thirty minutes past 3pm and the park was now packed .Children were happily playing , running around the park . Some had their faces were painted ,while some had balloons on their heads , flying kites and jumping around .
”I wished I had such a life when I was growing up ” I thought.
Joyce was my choice that moment, despite the many many destructions . At that time , we were joined by two of our friends who were joining us for the meeting. However, we had to delay the meeting in order to listen to Joyce . As a matter of fact , our meeting was about children like them.
Do you think young girls living in the street can prevent the risk of sexual harrasment? Well, your guess is as right as mine . Joyce is always at the risk of sexual abuse every day . She narrated how on a typical day, she never misses sexual abuse from fellow street family or people ‘willing’ to buy her good at the end of the day .
she lives in Gikomba , she calls it ‘baze ‘ Where on a normal day, she spends her night in ‘vibandas’ sometimes littered with unpleasant smells but that is where she rests everyday and she is used to .
“Would you like to change your life and live a better life?” A friend of mine asked .
”First of all, I have a child “she said
Her response left all of us shocked . How did she manage? Who was responsible? There were many questions we wanted to know but when she continued, we were left broken hearted .
”My child was stollen ,”she said in a sad tone. ” Many of my friends thought I sold the child ,but that was not the case. ” She said . Apparently, the child was traced to one children’s home .
Joyce needed more than counselling. She needed a way she could change her way of life in order to take care of her child . However, that could not be possible since it would take time.
Joyce needed more than counseling. She needed a way she could change her way of life in order to take care of her child. How can I mention to you how much she wishes to change her life and have a house, with a job to sustain herself and the child? She longed for the day her child could have a belonging and not live in the street.
We set a date with Joyce later during the week with that followed where she would be treated for dinner and chat from one of us.
To be continued…