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I THOUGHT I COULD NOT SEE THE LIGHT AGAIN, BUT MUSIC CHANGED THAT FOR ME. (story from a member at EYDC )

Elgon Youth Development Centre Uganda

It was 23nd December 2009 when I left home in Tororo and came to live on the streets of Mbale Eastern Uganda; I lost both my parents, who died of Aids. First it was my mother who died in 2007 and later my father in 2009 and this is when my life started shattering down, it made me believe that I could not see the light again. I stayed with my uncle for sometime but life was hard with him after the passing of my parents. At my uncle’s, the wife was never happy with my staying in the house and i believe this is why she made me a slave with the aim of making me hate living at home so that she could get led of me and it worked. She made me do a lot of work before going to school and this affected my studying, never gave me food during day, only supper when my uncle was around which really hurt me. It become worse when she started beating me every evening after school accusing me of coming back late! Calling me names and reminding me of my dead parents, you do not have a family, am not your mother and you are the reason why your parents died she said. This made me feel useless to everyone and left home to live on the streets.

 

Reaching Mbale was not easy because I had to walk for four hours from Tororo. I started carrying heavy loads for passengers in a bus park and earned $1 food a day, I did other things like grabbing hand bags from women and begging for money too.

 

 One-morning , locals arrested me after breaking of one shop at a bus park and I was among the suspects, I was beaten badly when they asked me to speak the other people behind the breaking and took me to police later. Afterwards, the authorities realized that I was not among the thieves; the coordinator of Elgon Youth Development Centre was at the police by that time when he saw me in a very bad situation after I was left to go crying without help on the street. When he approached me he felt sorry for me and asked me what happened, which I explained, asked weather I had a home and parents and answered no. He then told me to follow him which I did without asking him questions and later we reached at a place where there were lots of smiling boys and girls who were playing brass band music and dancing too.

 

  I was welcomed by the young boys and the matron, later i was presented to the director who asked me lots of questions and promised me that thing would be fine at Elgon. I was embraced for trials and he realized that i had potential and skill in music. I got registered to join Elgon and am playing trombone and still learning more instruments. Music has made me somebody, when I look at my past and now, I see a brighter future ahead of me and have changed for the betterness of my life and country. I have learnt how to respect, confidence and a skill I believe will bring food at my table in future.

 

At Elgon, I found my mother, father, uncle, sisters, brothers etc Am 14 years old and growing stronger.

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