Shukrani with one of her children
Thanks to your support we are able to be there for children and young people when they have no-one else to turn to. Children like Shukrani, we want to share with you her incredible story, which simply wouldn't have been possible without people like you.
Alone, hungry, beaten and abused
Shukrani lost her father when she was just five and her mother struggled to provide for her and her siblings. Desperate and hungry she took to the streets at the age of 14. She had no choice but to earn money through sex work. Shukrani started to use drugs and alcohol, stole food and money and fought every day to survive. At 15 she found herself pregnant and was forced to marry an older, abusive man. He often made her and her baby sleep outside with no food and no covers.
Eventually Shukrani escaped from him, deciding instead to take her chances back on the streets. But this was even worse and one night she was beaten so badly she ended up in hospital for three days. The police arrested the man responsible and Shukrani slowly recovered but once out of hospital she felt completely alone with her baby, no support, and constantly in fear. Her use of drugs and alcohol worsened and she lost all hope. Luckily, that’s when we met her and our teams have been working with her for 10 years now
A decade of repair and recovery
Our teams enrolled Shukrani with our youth association, and helped her access life skills and basic education training as well as counselling and therapy to try and help her recover from her trauma. Once she had studied hard and learnt a trade and business skills, we helped her with a grant to set up her own small shop.
As Tanzania recovers from Covid and its impact, we caught up with some of the young people who have followed our youth association programme and found Shukrani to be thriving - she now supports herself and her children by selling tea and groceries at the bus terminal in Mwanza..
She pays her own rent and has even saved enough to buy some land south of Mwanza where she plans to build a house. The skills we armed Shukrani with through the youth association enabled her to survive the recent challenges and face problems with confidence and determination. She is both content and capable - a far cry from the desperate, fragile girl we met struggling to survive all those years ago.
Thanks to you we can continue to be there for children at risk on the streets when they need us most, for as long as they need us.