This story hit the headlines in Zimbabwe twice this year. In the interests of child protection, we have not used real names.
Thembi is a 17 year old orphan who was referred to Trinity Project by the local Child Protection Committee. Just over two years ago, Thembi was raped by her uncle and fell pregnant as a result. She is now mother to an 18 month old baby boy.
Thembi reported the rape to the police; her uncle was successfully prosecuted and is now in jail. However, as a result of this brave decision, Thembi received death threats from her extended family. Some of these family members illegally occupied the house which had belonged to Thembi’s late parents, making Thembi homeless for a time. Through mediation with the family, Trinity Project was able to find a family member to speak up on behalf of the girl. This enabled us to take the case to a Magistrate, who appointed Trinity Project as the executors of the deceased estate. As a result, it was then possible to evict the family members who were squatting in Thembi’s home. However, Thembi’s family left the house without paying utility bills, leaving her with crippling debts as well as mounting legal fees. To compound matters, Thembi recently discovered she has cervical cancer, possibly resulting from the sexual abuse she suffered as a child, so is also having to find money to pay medical bills.
Thembi was always at the top of her class at school, but the traumas she has suffered over the past 2 years have forced her to drop out of education. She is now determined to find the money to pay for her school fees so she can return to education and fulfil her ambition of becoming a solicitor.
With the guidance of Trinity Project’s expert staff, ZET has supported Thembi as she seeks to overcome the challenges she faces. This summer, over $1,000 was raised in a special appeal which paid all of Thembi’s court costs and a large percentage of her debts. On 6th November, a magistrate officially authorised the transfer of the house into Thembi’s name.
Thembi thanks you for your support:
First and foremost I would like to thank you for your efforts in supporting me in my legal cases and my financial crisis. Three quarters of my debts in electricity and water bills have been paid off through the donated US$1000. These debts were a burden to me, and I used to find it difficult to concentrate on my life.
Ever since Trinity Project started assisting me, my life has been shaping up. Now I am able to concentrate on my studies with no worries of debts.
I sincerely appreciate and I am grateful for all your help and support. May God be with you and bless you all.