From home chores to school, the tale of a young mother
Joyce Sadrack and her child sells locally baked mandazi by the road side near her home in Hai Seminary (Photo by Kitab):
By Kitab A Unango
The occurrence of early pregnancy is prevalent in the country despite government and international organisations’ efforts to eradicate early pregnancy.
Child motherhood has consequently led to high rate of school dropout among young girls, thus limiting their chances of achieving their dreams.
However, some school going age young mothers have chosen to go back to school despite challenges they often face at home and in school.
Joyce Sadrack, a young mother who has been abandoned by her father because she had given birth at a teenage decided to continue with her studies. The journey is however hard and she is already thinking of giving up school if nobody comes out to support her.
“I provide for myself, my child and my old mum,” Joyce Sadrack said. “If I fail to get support from any well-wishers, the only option for me is to stop studying,” she said.
The 18 year old senior three student got pregnant at the age of 16. Consequently her father abandoned her and refused to support her in school.
Joyce revealed that the man who got her pregnant vanished on hearing she was pregnant, and never thought of her and the baby.
“I bear responsibility of taking care of the child alone. The father ran away because of the responsibility,” Joyce stated.
Joyce has resorted to doing small scale business to sustain herself, her baby and her old “ever sick mother.”
“No one is helping me at all, she said. “My mum is always sick I provide everything myself including food, medication and my school requirements through selling local baked mandazi.”
Despite all the challenges, Joyce remains thankful to God because her business is doing well. “I have many customers who buy the mandazi,” Joyce said.
Joyce’s plan is to expand her business to include manufacturing local laundry soap in which she acquired training two years ago but lacked capital to start the business.
“I have been trained in making soap two years back and I want to start the business but I have no money to buy materials. I always pray to God that I get some money so that I can start the business because that is the only thing I think will help me with my child and mum,” she said.
Another young mother, a 17-year old Sarah David dropped out of school in 2017. She was forced to stop studying because of pregnancy but she still has the hope of returning back to school when she stops breastfeeding her child.
“I got pregnant when I was in senior one at 16 years and I had to stop attending classes. Since then I am just at home taking care of my child but I hope by the end of this year when the child stops breastfeeding, I will go back to school if my father accepts to pay my school fees again,” Sarah revealed.
She said she regretted getting pregnant because now there are chances that even if she returns to school she might not complete it.
To keep her busy, Sarah enrolled in a computer course.
“I am doing a computer course to keep me busy till time comes for me to go back to school,” Sarah added.
She urged young ladies in school to be careful with their studies adding that what she has experienced should not happen to other school going girls.
“I had to cut my studies short just because of one day scene which I don’t want to happen to my fellow girls in school. I call upon them to take serious care to avoid destroying their future dreams,” she advised.