It’s difficult to imagine a life more bleak than Justutae’s.
After her husband became ill and died, the Ugandan woman was so desperate to shelter and feed her four children that she moved them into a broken-down hut. Justutae would care for children during the day, then give them some alcohol to make them sleep all night while she earned a living as a prostitute.
“I didn’t know where else to stay and I didn’t have money,” she says, noting her father had died and her mother wasn’t capable of housing her and the children.
Justutae was trapped in prostitution for 18 months before meeting one of the employees of the Sanyuka Women at Risk ministry, which is financially supported by Samaritan’s Purse through donations from Canadians like you.
Sanyuka employees walk the streets late at night in Jinja, near Uganda’s capital city of Kampala, offering women the opportunity to escape prostitution.
When Justutae learned Sanyuka was willing to house not only her but also her children, she leaped at the opportunity to be helped by the ministry.
“I thank God because He has changed me.”
Since she came to Sanyuka, “my life has changed,” Justutae, now 28, says. “I’m no longer the Justutae they (people on the street) used to know. I thank God because He has changed me. I am born again.”
Sanyuka’s live-in program includes Christian counseling and support, plus a wide range of skills training including weaving, tailoring, cooking, catering, and jewelry making.
Justutae and nine other women are midway through the 12-month program, which includes two years of follow-up support. The ministry has existed for 10 years and achieved a 90-per-cent success rate, says founding director Mary Zema.
Three of Justutae’s children are with her at Sanyuka. The eldest, a boy, is going to school elsewhere. She is struggling to pay his school costs, but not willing to resort to prostitution to meet expenses.
“I’m not willing to go back. Through God’s grace, I am rooted in His salvation. Despite any challenge that may come my way, I will overcome it.”
Please join us, through your donations and prayers, in transforming lives like Justutae’s through this ministry and through others like it that we also support worldwide.
The hardships women in the developing world face often leave them without hope. Through your generous gifts, Samaritan's Purse is working to restore the hope of women through programs aimed at increasing literacy, providing maternal health care, teaching livelihood skills, and stopping trafficking and prostitution.