How the teenage mother and widows journey begun

Tendo
Posted May 15, 2020

Hi there am Esther Natukunda. I come from Jinja Uganda east Africa. Am a mother of 2 and I raise my children single handedly because we were abandoned while I was pregnant and with a one and two month old baby. Life was too hard and embarrassing because in my community you would rather loose your life than loosing your marriage, that's why women are abused a lot and children in communities.

All this happened in Kampala city and one day I watched news on television and pregnant women were dying in labour suites because midwives couldn't attend to them without out a mama kit ( it contains gloves, surgical blade, cotton wool, birth mat and other requirements used while a mother is giving birth). So I packed 100 mama kits to visit my community and to my surprise I saw young girls pregnant and they were very hungry and others didn't know what to do all they wanted was to go back to school they wanted to continue with education but unfortunately their parents lost hope in them and were mistreated and  neglected. They were between the age of 13 and 19 and the majority were 16 years.

I went back home restless and couldn't stop thinking about them, I begun by visiting 10 pregnant teens giving them basic needs and helping them go for antenatal check up.

 

After sometime they begun delivering and I would help them to the hospital in the community for if I left them to go on their own they would be neglected because they were too Uganda, I registered a community based organization to help them better.

 

I later on realised that most of them were orphans and lacked basic needs like food, shelter,medication and education.the number increased and their widowed mothers couldn't attend to their needs because of land grabbing which is a challenge in my community. Widows loose right of ownership of their husbands property while their husbands pass on.

 

So I want to help many teenage mothers and widows better by having a teen mother school, a skills training centre for women faced with challenges, a medical centre to provide free medical services to widows, orphans and teenage mothers and a home for teen moms that are mistreated in their homes and thrown out and I want to get land for widow's farming because they don't have where to plant food and women don't inherit property in my community and am trying to fight for them by engaging legal services which is now a challenge due to lack of resources So I became a voice of teenage mothers , widows, orphans, abused mothers and old people. I know one day they will raise up to support other vulnerable people.

The reason why my heart breaks and aches for such people is because they go through what I came out of and I believe they will also come out of such challenges to support other women and girls facing the same challenges.

 

 

This story was submitted in response to Dispatches from the COVID-19 Pandemic.

Comments 47

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Jill Langhus
May 15
May 15

Hi Esther,

How are you and your family doing, dear? Thanks so much for sharing your sad, but inspiring story with us. Do you have a website and/or social media page(s) for us to like/follow? I would love to follow your work. I'm looking forward to hearing more about your powerful work and initiatives.

Hope you're safe and well and that you have a good weekend.

Tendo
May 19
May 19

Am going to open up a facebook page soon. I didn't know I needed it until I joined world purse sister

Jill Langhus
May 20
May 20

Okay, great! Oh, you don't need one, but it would be great to learn more about your work and have others learn more about it, too.

Tendo
May 20
May 20

I really need one sister and thanks to you and world purse of course. Your comment triggered me to it. And the need to follow stories that I didn't know they are life changing to many sweet souls

Jill Langhus
May 21
May 21

Okay:-) Great to hear! Can't wait to see it!

XX

Tendo
May 28
May 28

Just opened Hope on the rock ministries Facebook page

Jill Langhus
May 29
May 29

Great job! I can't find it, though. Can you paste the link?

Thanks:-)

Tendo
Jun 20
Jun 20

My face book name is Esther Tendo and HOPE ON THE ROCK MINISTRIES is a page in there

Tendo
Jun 21
Jun 21

Yes that's it. Thank you for keeping in touch

Jill Langhus
Jun 22
Jun 22

Great! You're welcome:-)

Chi8629
May 15
May 15

Thank you for sharing.

Tendo
May 19
May 19

My pleasure. Thank you for loving my story sister

Leonida Odongo
May 15
May 15

You are strong Esther, keep doing the good deeds .

Tendo
May 19
May 19

Thank you, that's encouraging

Vanora.Lee
May 15
May 15

Great to hear that you are giving comforts who are in the trouble that you have successfully endured, it's so powerful and awesome. Really deomonstrating the empowering girls. Salute to you. Stay safe and well!

Tendo
May 19
May 19

Thank you

madison2308
May 16
May 16

Hello Esther,
You are such an inspiration. The work you are doing is so important and I am sure the women and girls you have helped are so appreciative. I believe you are right and they will look back at how you helped them and be inspired to help others in the future. I am very glad you were able to overcome the obstacles in your life and still have the kindness in your heart to help others.

Tendo
May 19
May 19

Thank you sister, your encouraging words have made me consider having a page for you to follow everything

Tendo
May 28
May 28

The Facebook page is on sister will begin sharing stories. Hope on the rock ministries

Tamarack Verrall
May 16
May 16

Hi Esther,
What a story, of coming through so much yourself, and turning around to help all these girls and women. All of the laws, written, retaught and passed on, that women cannot own their own land, too often made to work for free and pushed aside with nothing, are in place to keep us controlled, and pushed aside with nothing. "I went back home restless". The heart of a sister determined to create change. You show what a difference one woman can make. All the best with your work, and a big welcome to World Pulse!

Tendo
May 19
May 19

Thank you sister. And thanks to world purse I didn't know how important my work is untill joined world purse

Thelma obani 2020
May 17
May 17

Keep winning dear. Your initiative and work will continue to grow from strength to strength.

Tendo
May 19
May 19

Thank you

Julie Desai
May 18
May 18

We need women like you to share your stories to encourage others! Kudos!

Tendo
May 19
May 19

Thanks Julie an opening a facebook page for my organisation Soon. Hope on the rock ministries. I didn't know my stories are worth sharing. I have very many touching stories

Julie Desai
May 19
May 19

Keep sharing

muhorakeye esperance

courage to be the voice of the voiceless is necessary in the african community because women are victims of all kinds

Tendo
May 19
May 19

That's true sister

Beth Lacey
May 18
May 18

You are very strong and your giving back is remarkable

Tendo
May 19
May 19

Ohh thank you Beth

Catherine De Freitas

You are indeed a woman of substance! An inspiration for all. Continue making a difference. Blessings.

Tendo
May 19
May 19

Thank you beautiful Catherine

Ana Lozano
May 19
May 19

What you're doing, wonderful Esther, is no small endeavor. You're admirable because of your resilience, empathy and determination. Please keep us posted on this project of yours. I can't wait to hear and see more of what you're doing and how you're impacting your community and the world. I read on the comments that you're setting up a Facebook page. Please, do share that with us once it's ready and, of course, don't hesitate to ask for guidance or support on this if you need so.
Welcome to World Pulse!

Tendo
May 20
May 20

I will of course share once it's ready. Thank you so much Ana

Tendo
May 28
May 28

Hi Ana I have set up the Facebook page. It's hope on the rock ministries. I will begin posting stories and everything

Tendo
Jun 20
Jun 20

I think I need help on the page. Technical help

Harris Namutebi
May 22
May 22

Hi Esther,
Every contribution matters in the lives of young girls and women. These young mothers need hope to ensure they lead a better life with their children, Am sure together we can make lives of young girls and women better.
Regards
Harris

Tendo
May 22
May 22

Thank you sister

MUKABA ZAWADI
May 26
May 26

thank you for the sharing and solidarity you have in helping many teenage mothers and widows by having a school for teenage mothers, a training center for women facing challenges, a medical center to provide free medical services to widows, orphans and teenage mothers and a home for moms

Tendo
May 27
May 27

Hey sister I don't have those put in place yet I believe they Will exist one day

PrincessEkwi
May 31
May 31

wow! inspiring story. keep it up dear

Tendo
Jun 20
Jun 20

Thank you princess

Ironclay
Jun 01
Jun 01

Hello Esther, you're an inspiration to women, young girls and leaders alike. More power to you, your work and advocacies!

Tendo
Jun 20
Jun 20

Thank you

Oluwatoyin Olabisi
Jun 07
Jun 07

You are doing a fabulous work that requires courage,resilience and determination. The need for Sexual and Reproductive Health Services for young people cannot be overemphasized.It is a strategic tool for addressing and curbing Teenage Pregnancy.
I just followed you,

Tendo
Jun 20
Jun 20

Thank you