The Story of Milka, a Strong Kenyan Woman
This is a true story supplied by one of the projects which Shoes by Shaherazad partner with in Kenya via GlobalGiving UK.
Milka is a 26 years old partial orphan raised by her mother. She successfully completed secondary school education last year after joining the "Nyanza Initiative for Girls Education and Empowerment" scholarship program three years ago. Before NIGEE identified her she says, “I was hopeless and I had almost given up on life. My mother struggled to take me to school and when she couldn’t manage it anymore, I had to drop out. I got pregnant during the same year I dropped out of school,” she says. Milka wasn’t prepared for what would happen next. The man responsible for her pregnancy denied any involvement and she was on her own. She was devastated but that did not dampen her spirit.
“I always wanted to go back to school and so when I later met a man who promised to take me back to school so that I could fulfill my dreams, I married him at the age of 14,” she explains. This however did not happen. “When I asked him about going back to school he became violent and sent me away with my son. I was shattered,” she laments.
She, however, picked up her pieces and figured out a new way to ensure she went back to school. She left her son with her mother and became a house help. “I agreed with my employer that she would save the money while I worked so that I could get back to school. But this was not to be,” she explains. “My mother and son became ill several times and I had to use my savings for their treatment. In the end I also developed health complications and had to quit the job,” Milka adds with tears rolling down. It is then that NIGEE identified her and took her back to school.
Currently Milka is a volunteer intern at NIGEE within a project supporting girls’ education. She also attends computer training sessions at the Girls Empowerment Centre which is supported by Shoes by Shaherazad. She hopes to become a nurse once she gets a stable job to support her fees in a nursing school. She happily tells us that “NIGEE has given me hope and a second chance to become the person I’ve always wanted to be. I hope that in my lifetime I will also be able to empower someone else.”
This story was kindly supplied by NIGEE member of staff Godfrey Ochieng.