16th October 2012
Today we travelled with Stella and Susan (driven by Henry) to visit Stella’s Grandmother in her village. Stella was so excited and seemed to be really pleased we were coming with her too. Stella actually lived in the orphanage behind her grandmother’s house for years as she was too old and frail to care for her. Her Grandmother, known in Lugandan as Jaja was so sweet, we’d taken her some basic foods like flour, sugar etc and she was so touched she gave Mum a gift too, a basket she had woven herself. She told us about Stella’s Mum and Susan translated for us. Stella’s Mum abandoned her on Jaja when she was newborn, and even said if they didn’t want her then to throw her in the river. So sad, she has since tried to abandon another child on Jaja but Jaja said no. Her Aunt confirmed for us that Stella was born in 1998 so is in fact 14, she just seems younger from living with young children in the orphanage and playing like them. She isn’t as developed as her peers of the same age too… it is often a challenge pinpointing ages of the girls at Wakisa.
We met with one of her local church’s youth team members who explained that the community actually threatened Jaja as a mob because they blame Stella for the man who raped he being in jail and in fact reintroducing Stella to the community once her baby is born will take time. We walked up to the orphanage too, it was lovely and clean, the smallest little girl was scared of us Muzungus and the others giggled at her as she tried to hide. Mum and I have decided to donate some clothing to them as there were some children’s clothes in the M&S bundle from Helen, so glad we can see exactly where they are going.
It was quite an emotional morning, Stella even pointed out on our way home where she was attacked. She dozed on my shoulder on and off until we got back to Wakisa.
In the afternoon we set up a maternity clothes shop for the girls and let them each choose something before counting the remainder into stock. We dished out some new knickers to them too.
We were fortunate to be around for a session of them having a good sing, I did film some but didn’t have the tripod so hoping to try again another time!! (jittery is an understatement!)
Tomorrow we are taking a load of the girls to the Zoo for a day trip! Should be fun!