Anna was a student at Chikumbuso. She lived with her father and stepmother in Ng’ombe. She often found herself at odds with her stepmother. Often when a new father or mother comes into the home, the stepchildren are mistreated. That abuse can be verbal, but more often it is physical. Stepchildren can often be made to eat old or rotten food, sleep separately from the ‘new’ family or become victims of sexual abuse. In Anna’s case, one evening after a disagreement, she was thrown out of the house in the middle of the night. As she wandered around looking for somewhere to sleep, she was attacked and raped. She became pregnant. Not knowing what to do, she turned to Chikumbuso for help. Anna’s trouble became the inspiration for the Safe Haven. She and her new baby were taken in by Chikumbuso and she was given a safe place to live, care for her child and an opportunity to continue her education in spite of the difficulties. Eventually, the widows of Chikumbuso worked with Anna’s family and they went to live with her sister and family in a different area of town. Getrude is still very attached to them and they try to communicate often.
*Not her real name to protect her privacy