Smiling women on Mission

Added: Tanequa Majors - Date: 10.01.2022 20:17 - Views: 10854 - Clicks: 2575

Bringing change one girl at a time: young mentors from the Wise Choices for Life programme co-founded by mission partner Heather Sharland have helped raise the age of first pregnancy from 14 to 16 All photos: David and Heather Sharland.

Smiling women on Mission

At the time these words were spoken at a local clinic, the average age of first pregnancy in Arua, north west Uganda, was In these rural communities in Uganda, teenage pregnancies happen all too easily. The issue is a complex one.

Smiling women on Mission

Quite apart from a lack of sex education, girls have very low self-esteem and are desperate to earn some money. Poverty is widespread, and young girls struggle to afford food and their school fees. In the evening when young girls go out to collect water, boys are waiting at the water pumps.

Smiling women on Mission

They know girls are easily won over with a few kind words. Older men are also waiting for these girls. Having left their families behind to get work in this part of the country, they are out looking for young virgins. They know girls will sleep with them for as little as 10, Ugandan shillings Smiling women on Mission two pounds.

When a girl gets pregnant at 14 or 15 years old, she drops out of school. Pregnancy shuts down future opportunities that an education would have made possible, and every teen pregnancy contributes to passing on the poverty cycle to the next generation. Many girls in this part of Uganda see teenage pregnancy as inevitable. Why would their life take a different path from that of their mothers and older sisters?

Her impoverished family are likely keen to marry her off, as they will receive a bride price for her. Therefore you need to produce children, you do the work that I want you to do. When she reaches menopause, her value as a wife is diminished, and her husband may buy another 14 or year-old girl to satisfy his desires while his first wife sleeps in the kitchen.

CMS mission partner Heather Sharland, a midwife by profession, has a heart to show these young girls the love of Jesus, and show them what love really is. She has a passion for giving these girls a chance at a different future. Heather started a youth programme called Wise Choices for Life, which gives girls in these communities options through a mixture of education, peer encouragement and mentoring. Heather teaches the girls that each one of them is a beloved daughter of God and that he has good things in store for them.

Heather linked her up with a mentor, who walked alongside her and encouraged her in her education. Now this same girl is in her third year of secondary school, with a bright future ahead of her. As well as addressing hopelessness, sex education and low self-esteem, Heather talks to the girls about goals. They talk about how to set them and what kind of goals they might already have, or like to have.

Smiling women on Mission

As a group they discussed what might prevent her reaching the goal and what seemed to get in the way of goals. The Wise Choices programme is a space to learn about the opportunities education can open up: becoming a nurse or a doctor or a teacher, and earning your own money.

They talk about the things that might stop them reaching their goals, such as distraction by boys and getting pregnant, and how to hold each other able and focus on their goals instead. Heather and her husband David have never had any children.

Throw this one away. Gradually, the of young girls avoiding pregnancy and going on to secondary school is increasing. Since Heather and Cindy Okollo started this youth programme inthe average age of first pregnancy in the area has increased from 14 to By helping girls to make wise choices, the culture is being changed from the inside out, one girl at a time. Pray for these young women and their families. Please pray also for the region where Heather and David work, facing locusts and the danger of coronavirus on top of the challenges that already existed.

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Smiling women on Mission

They are set by third party content providers, such as video players and maps. If disabled, these content providers will not be loaded. A young mum and baby The issue is a complex one. Heather Sharland helps girls to understand how their bodies work — a first step to a different future Her impoverished family are likely keen to marry her off, as they will receive a bride price for her.

Beginning to dream CMS mission partner Heather Sharland, a midwife by profession, has a heart to show these young girls the love of Jesus, and show them what love really is. A brighter tomorrow Gradually, the of young girls avoiding pregnancy and going on to secondary school is increasing. Back to all stories. Please take a very short survey and help us improve our website No thanks Sure.

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Smiling women on Mission

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