by Alfred Otieno Otieno

Support Story

Alfred Otieno  is a 16 year old boy who  hails from Katieno village in Migori County. He goes to Chunge Primary School and is in grade six. Alfred is doing well in school but that was not always the case. His father passed on and he and his two siblings continued living with their mother, Alice. Unfortunately due to pressure from the extended family to fulfill cultural demands, his mother succumbed to the pressure of widow inheritance. she gave birth to one more child and immediately started ailing. She was diagnosed  with HIV. The new  husband fled and left the family more destitute than before. As his mother became weak due to constant ailments, she could no longer provide for the family  and Alfred had to step in to take care of the other siblings . This marked the turning point for Alfred, since he was the first born in the family and there was no one willing to support them. 

He decided to leave school and find ways of generating some income to support his ill mother, the baby and his two other younger siblings. He was only 10 years when he drop out of school and went to work at the Macalder gold mines.

His  family was enrolled by Caritas Homabay and this presented the family with light at the end tunnel. His mother underwent counseling and testing and was put on ARV together with the baby. Alfred however continued working at the mines. The Child Behind with the support of Officers from Department of Children’s Services stepped in took him back to school.  Even after Alfred was successfully rescued from the mines, he could  sneak back because he felt obligated to support his family. He was counsel led and with frequent home visits for follow up, Alfred saw the need of concentrating in his studies as he assisted his mother with simple house chores. Successfully, he managed to fully settle back in school and his mother; through Support Group and SILC activities is now able to support the family without engaging her children in child labour anymore.

My appreciation goes to TCB because my family is stable and I’m back to school. I can’t forget about  the Children’s Office,they made  me realize that My Education was more important  than the money and the vices I was being exposed to at the mines. I am grateful for all those who believed in me’