“You will never amount to anything,” her mother yelled.
“How could you be so stupid?” her father asked.
“You think you are ready to be a parent, Stella? You think it is easy caring for another human being?” her mother’s voice boomed.
She continued,” You still live in my house with me. What are you going to do with a baby? You just ruined your whole life. Get out of my sight.”
Participating in Hope and Dreams Initiative’s Sister’s becoming women initiative helped me overcome my insecurities and gain self-acceptance. The Sister’s Becoming Women Initiative’s meetings were a safe haven for me and other girls. We were able to talk about the challenges we faced at home as teen mothers. I learned that I was not alone – other girls were also dealing with the same issues. Barrister Nguzo was instrumental in helping me develop a positive self-image. She taught me to make affirmations because there is power in what we say and think about ourselves. Every day I affirm that “I am beautiful,” “Everything is going to be okay,” and “Others’ words will not affect me.” Today, I have a positive attitude about myself and my son. I embrace and love everything about myself. I’m currently at a Bakery/Pastry school, thanks to Hope and Dreams Initiative, and I know the future because I can start my own baking business and support myself and my son.
“The Hope and Dreams Initiative’s Sisters Becoming Women programs showed me it’s important to speak up and read to my son because without an education he would struggle more. They taught me to put my son and school as my first priorities,” she says.
“Knowing that you have to be an adult and be responsible, a mother, growing up really fast, and still wishing I got the teen experiences, it’s a battle.” She says. “What keeps me going is coming to the safe space and meeting other teen mothers like me, who are going through similar issues but getting help and support from Barrister Nguzo. If it wasn’t for her and how she has taught us to be bold, fierce, and always negotiate for our lives but with a humble attitude and respectfully. I may not have been alive till now if not for the program. Thank you, Barrister Nguzo, may God bless you.”
Society makes it seem as though having a baby as a teenager stops you from living your dreams but that isn’t the case. Elizabeth is due to graduate with a certificate in Fashion design from a Fashion school. “The sister’s becoming women Initiative has made my life that was troubled better, I can now negotiate for my life squarely” I can now look people in their eyes and tell them about my son, before coming to the program, I was so ashamed of talking about him. Everyone needs to be part of this program.