Brendah A Neumbe
My name is Neumbe Brendah, a former beneﬁciary of CONCERN FOR THE GIRL CHILD and a member of the BIG SISTERS foundation that was set up by old beneﬁciaries that are committed to giving back to CGC’s interventions through mentorship and sponsorship of the younger girls.
I am a fourth born out of 5 girls profoundly raised by a single mum. Being a young mother, my 16year old school dropout mother by then had ﬂed the rural area to raise her daughters in the middle of Kampala. With no job or qualiﬁcations, she had to fend for her children since her husband (my dad) was always drinking and sleeping, as I had observed. I had witnessed a number of ﬁghts going on between our drunkard dad before mum decided to walk away and raised us on her own claiming that dad was useless since he wouldn’t provide.
Our safety as children had been compromised as our mum was always out looking for money. She had to work extremely hard for so little. While I was about 3 years old, three of my sisters were sent to stay in the village and I remained with my mum and little sister in Kampala. With me witnessing so many uncles at our house came the sexual abuse as a child and I couldn’t tell what was right and what wasn’t at a very tender age. Meanwhile, I had a chance to get sponsorship from ‘compassion international’ who took me through my primary school. I noticed how my little sister was frequently sent from school and moved from school to school all because there wasn’t money to keep her in school. When my primary sponsorship had ended I was lucky to get another sponsorship from Concern for the Girl child that helped me join secondary school. Somehow, God provided through my school fees miracle and staying in school became my refuge. Meanwhile, I was struggling a lot as a sexually abused child at home but nevertheless I had to excel through school. With Concern for the Girl child came counseling and guidance and a few lessons were learned. Regardless, I always blamed myself for all that had happened and couldn’t stop wondering why I was the way I was sexually.
When I got pregnant before joining university, CGC decided to give me a chance to complete school since I had excelled. I was able to graduate with a Bachelor’s degree in Information Technology and Computing and got a job with CGC as a Resource Center Attendant. With this job came mentorship responsibilities for the girls on the program. Deep down I knew many girls were struggling with issues which were probably greater than mine but how could I help them? Could sharing my experience help the girls excel? I wondered! I remember our girls having several issues ranging from low self-esteem to dropping out of school with the biggest problem being teenage pregnancy! We were being overwhelmed each term with new cases of girls getting pregnant or simply running away and deliberately refusing to go to school. Much as the fees was readily available; the girls seemed not to be interested. CGC gave me an opportunity to attend the EAST African leadership girls’ training in Kenya and I believe that was a turning point. I was inspired to be the great leader that I am. I got a chance to appreciate and embrace the opportunities I had to better myself personally, spiritually, mentally, emotionally and intellectually - the sky was the limit. I must confess that ever since I learned to work on myself I have become the better version as a mentor, a mother and as a worker generally.
I also committed myself to taking a vital decision to ﬂee an abusive relationship which I identiﬁed after going through the EAGLEs training and G4G programs. Once I deﬁned the kind of relationship I wanted to see, I wouldn’t settle for anything less and that’s a story for next time. My mental, physical and emotional wellbeing is key for me to thrive. As a mother of two, my dream is to become the best mother that inspires my children and brings out the best in them”. My personal growth has been tremendous! I now redeﬁne my goal in regards to what I really want to do to see a change in the girls’ lives. I have started working intently with my talent, the things I love such as singing, dancing and especially Art. Together with my colleagues, we run girls’ clubs to better mentor them. I aspire to inspire girls ﬁnd their passion and build whatever it is that they have passion for while they reach for their careers as well. CGC not only paid my fees to keep me in school but catered for my wellbeing as a whole by exposing me to spaces where I received healing and grew my networks. Indeed, _Concern for the Girl child empowers the Girl child.