From shaking hands with the President, to her first job at ECM – No longer a ‘ghost’

10 years ago when Madina Mutesi joined the ECM Child sponsorship Program, she had no idea that her first job in life would be with the same organization. Madinah’s light colored hair, eye brows and eye lashes set her apart, but to the majority who are not exposed, her uniqueness is an item of ridicule.

“I grew up in a homestead with five aunties, who had several other children to take care of. It was not easy to have me in school, a situation worsened by the fact that I was an Albino Child”, says Madina.

Now 19years old, Madinah was born in the slums of Kamwokya, Kampala city where people live by the jungle law – “survival for the fittest”. Being a Child with Albinism, she often had insults and derogatory comments hurled at her.

Madina narrates that, “People often called me a ghost. They said I was not fit to leave in the community”.

However, as is the practice with several children born with Albinism, she was not confined in a house. This enabled Madinah to build confidence in herself. She says she would always stand her ground, something that didn’t give her aggressors an upper hand and that she greatly loved herself especially the color of her hair.

For Madinah, growing up in a world where her kindred, Persons With Albinism are considered to be ghosts, pigs and viewed by others as either curses or demi gods that bring wealth, did not make it easy to thrive, but also did not deter her from pursuing her goals in life.

The presidential Initiative for skilling the youth was a stitch in time for Madinah. After completing Senior six, Madinah chose to enroll for a six months’ Confectionary Course under this initiative. She says that she was motivated by the love she had for cakes and the fact that she fell in love with baking.  During the course, she had an outstanding performance and the overall Manager for the Presidential Initiative chose her to give a speech before the President on behalf of over 8,000 other graduates at Kololo Airstrip, where the graduation took place. It was her first time to speak in front of thousands of people and her nerves were not at ease either. The presidential handshake that followed is one Madinah says she will remember for life.

On her appointment with ECM, Madina says that, “I didn’t expect this. I never thought that ECM could employ me some day but It’s now my opportunity to give back”. Madinah will be working under the Special Needs and Albinism Program, the same Program under which she was identified and given a future 10years ago.

Madina is just but one of the over 500 children that Every Child Ministries has given hope in life for the past 10 years. The Education and Child Sponsorship Program is the core of the work of ECM, alongside providing health support, agricultural support, rescue and rehabilitation, among others.

 

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