Posts Tagged ‘Kibera slum’
St Clare Girls Centre continues to receive young girls from all over Kenya. During my last visit to St Clare in February and March 2012, I again had the opportunity and privilege to speak with several young girls from different villages and cities in Kenya. They shared their stories and again I was amazed and inspired by the incredible courage and resilience of these young women.
We begin with two girls from Kibera. Kibera is located near Nairobi,and is the largest slum in Africa. The living conditions there are horrible with sewage strewn through the streets. The children in Kibera wear only tattered clothing, have no shoes, and have not bathed in some time. The area is characterized by a terrible stench, and mud and more mud.
Mary (not her real name) age 14 came to St Clare from Kibera, a slum outside of Nairobi, where she lived with her grandmother in a tin hut after both of her parents died. She recalls that there was no plumbing, waste was thrown on the streets and there was little food. “In order to assist my grandmother with a few shillings, I washed people’s clothes. If I made an error in my work, I was often beaten by these people.” Sister Marianna, an Italian sister living and working with the slum people, rescued Mary. Mary continues “ I know if Sister had not brought me to St. Clare I would have been raped in the slum.” Nancy is very happy at St Clare where she loves to dance, study and spend time with the other girls. “When my education is complete, I want to return to Kibera where I will build a school for other slum girls.”
Elizabeth (not her real name) is 13 years old and spent her young years also living in the Nairobi slum of Kibera. She too was rescued by Sister Marianna who lives and works there with the slum dwellers. Cynthia recounts “My father was a gangster who was murdered and my mother became very stressed out so could not care for me. I was left all alone with only my aunt who tried to care for me. My aunt also was a slum dweller who had no work. There was really no one to help me but I was blessed as Sister Marianna knew of St Clare and brought me here where I am so happy to have friends and a very good school.”