The Democratic Republic of the Congo - "Maison Marguerite" and "Foyer Annuarite": places of rebirth for mothers and babies

22 May 2017

(ANS - Goma) - Plagued by a guerrilla that has lasted over twenty years, the Northern Kivu region, although being rich in natural resources, is marked by the most extreme poverty, raids and violence. The girls are the first victims of this dramatic situation. They become mothers even before they become adults, not infrequently as a result of an abuse. They are lonely and helpless, slightly older than their children. The Salesians of Goma have opened two structures dedicated especially to them: the “Maison Marguerite” and the “Foyer Annuarite”.

These are two centers born in order to offer hospitality, protection, and support to the single mothers and young vulnerable women. Educators, voluntary workers, social and psychological assistants work there and provide the girls with:

• Psychological support;

• Educational-motivational paths for self-awareness and self-esteem;

• Research, mediation and family reunion;

• Vocational education and training;

• Recreational and sporting moments;

• Micro-credit for the development of small businesses;

It is thanks to the work of the Salesians and their many collaborators and women collaborators if today Safari, a 17-years-old girl, has hopes for herself and her baby. Abandoned by her father at an early age and with a conflicting relationship with her stepfather, Safari has ended up living on the street. There she has met a man who, after having courted her, abandoned her when he found out that she was pregnant. At the 6th month of pregnancy, Safari returned to live in the street, and then ended up in jail, following a cruel and indiscriminate police operation against the street children.

The mediation of the Salesians of Goma was then essential, who were able to get by the Juvenile Court the custody of many children. Thus, on August 18, at "Maison Marguerite", was born “Baraka (blessing) Moise”.

Justine, instead in just 16 years, has already suffered so much. After the separation of her parents, the girl found herself contested between her father and mother and forced to move several times; at the end, escaped from her mother, while she was trying to reach her father, she was kidnapped by a soldier of the rebel troops that for years have been fighting with the army and she was raped for two months. Being pregnant, through the help of a local civilian group and the Social Affairs Division, she is guided to the “Maison Marguerite”. It is only at that point that Justine's sufferings end, because the center takes care of her and her little baby.

For more information visit the website: Missioni Don Bosco



ANS - “Agenzia iNfo Salesiana” is a on-line almost daily publication, the communication agency of the Salesian Congregation enrolled in the Press Register of the Tibunal of Rome as n 153/2007.

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