In the evening of 05 February 2013, an officer of the Youth Welfare Office paid us an unexpected visit. With him was a 13 years old girl who had to be rescued from a forced marriage. Regina had contacted her headmaster with a request for help, and the headmaster informed the Youth Welfare Office. Since it had to be feared that the father would withhold his daughter even through violence, the only option was to collect her directly from the school.
Without hesitation we have admitted Regina in Nice View.
Regina tells her story:
I come from the village Magojoni and went there to the Naserian Primary School. I lived together with my family from the Masai tribe. My father has 3 wives, his first one is my mother. I have 4 sisters and 4 brothers. Two of my sisters are younger than I, one oft the older ones is married and one goes to Primary School. The 2nd wife of my father has 7 children, the 3rd 6 children. My mother told me that my father wants to marry me off and that he would get 10 cows and a sum of money in return. But I am still young, 13 years old, and still want to study. I don’t want to marry. I do not know the man and do not even know how old he is. I want to go to school as long as possible. My mother did not want to marry me off. She told me about my father’s plans. She and my aunt told me to write my teachers a letter and to ask them to help me. I wrote a letter to my class teacher and to my headmaster and informed them that my father wants to marry me off against my will and asked them to help me. After that some people came to school and spoke with me. I went to take lunch and after that they were still there. They told me that they would help me and took me with them in the car. They brought me to Nice View. I like it in Nice View. I am happy and thankful for everything I am provided with. I go again to school and want to graduate. Thereafter I want to study and become a physician. Only then I will return to my parents. They can come to Nice View if they want to see me. I am also grateful for the food I get. Therefore I eat everything.
Regina is a hardworking, helpful and friendly girl and has integrated well into the Nice View family. However, she is still somewhat reserved. She visits now class 5 and gets on well with the other children. If you ask her if she has already made friends she immediately names Mwanajuma. Soley our Naomi fears Regina, what is completely unexplainable. Perhaps the stigmas in Regina’s face frighten her?
October 2013: Regina is a happy girl which has fitted in and adapted very well. She is always positive, has a good attitude and is now in class 7.
January 2016: Regina is in class 7 with Mickey, Sarah, Mary and Juma. She's an average learner, but has been able to improve and could even be a good student according to her class teacher. Regina is a friendly, open-minded and helpful girl who likes singing. She's also a good drummer and guitar player.
At the end of 2015 she was hit by a heavy blow of fate: Her mother died unexpectedly. After talking to the youth welfare office, she was allowed to attend the funeral in company of several employees. This is where she me her stepfather, a Maasai. She herself doesn't belong to the Maasai people as she has told us a while ago. Her mother was half Luo and half Somali. We don't know anything about her natural father.
November 2018: Regina finished primary school end of last year and has started her training in January to become a cosmetician and hairdresser. She attends a Christian vocational training centre in Ukunda, but still lives at the children’s village and goes to Ukunda every day.