FROM THE FIELD, Women at Risk

One Woman’s Story

One of the best ways in which we can communicate our gratitude to you, our members, is by sharing with you positive stories and changes that have come out of the Mocha Club project’s in Africa.

  Anna*, a woman from Arsi Robe in the Oromiya region in Africa, is currently enrolled in the Ellilta Women at Risk program in Adama. Up until just a little while ago, Anna struggled with a very difficult life. She suffered a very unstable upbringing, living under multiple different caretakers, and ultimately setting out on her own when she was not much older than 11.  Anna met a man in one of the first jobs she took after she began living on her own, whom she married, and she began living with him and his child. Anna became pregnant with her own child, and she and her husband sought medical care in in Addis Ababa. Unfortunately, during her prenatal check-ups, it was discovered that Anna was HIV positive, and that she had contracted the disease from her husband. Anna was of course very angry with her husband for not informing her that he had HIV, but she continued to live with him, because she had no other options.

  After Anna gave birth to her child, she left her in the care of her aunt, and went back to Adama to find work as a day laborer. Anna found and worked day jobs such as washing clothes and cooking for people, but she ultimately fell under the influence of some women who told her that becoming a prostitute would help her to make more money. Anna unfortunately fell into prostitution for nearly ten years, until finally she was approached by one of the counselors from the Ellillta Women at Risk program. Anna became one of 22 women who were selected to join the rehabilitation clinic. Today, Anna is still enrolled in the rehabilitation clinic at Ellilta Women At Risk, and is partaking in a structured counseling program. She said, “One of the reasons I decided to join E-WAR was that I had the fear that if I don’t stop prostitution, my daughter who is 14 years-old may follow in my steps and start prostitution.” It is hard not to admire Anna’s true courage and strength.

  It is because of the help from our members that stories like Anna’s exist. It is through your participation in the Mocha Club that we are able to give women the assistance and the bravery they need to accept help and change the course of their lives. Our hope is that through our collaborations with you, we will continue to see more positive changes like this one.

Support women like Anna!

*Out of respect & safety of our partners, names have been changed.

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