When did it become ok for a 4 year old to witness her mother taking her own life and then be cast off into a life of child labor?
When did it become ok for a young mother to hand over her daughter to a shelter home in hopes that her daughter would not be sexually assaulted by the drunks coming to purchase home made alcohol from her crippled husband in their 1 room, dirt floor shack?
These stories are heartbreaking and they are the stories of our Unatti girls. But, these are not the stories of their futures. If you met any of them today, you would never know!
Over the past 18 years Unatti Foundation has changed the lives of young girls who have experienced loss, neglect, abandon and abuse.
Saraswoti spent 16 years living at the Unatti Group Home for Girls. As she grew through the years, she became a mentor for her younger sisters and a model citizen in our home. She was always top of her class in school, so when she asked to go to college and become a lab technician, we fully supported her! Upon graduating she knew she would return to Pokhara to care take her mother, crippled alcoholic father and younger sister who live in the slums adjacent to the airport. She has a younger bother as well but his whereabouts are unknown for the past 2 years. He fell into a life of drinking and street drugs at a very young age..
Earlier this year, one of our founding Board of Directors joined me for my annual trip to Nepal. During the trip we hopped a quick flight to Pokhara, a beautiful lake side town just north of Kathmandu to spend time with Saroswoti. It was a tearful and joyous reunion. Upon seeing Saraswoti, with explosive excitement, she burst out, “Ama, you will not believe what has happened, I got 2 jobs in 2 local hospitals where I am an x-ray technician.” Her smile beaming with immense pride. “I don’t know which to choose so I took them both!”
Our Unatti girls have courage, they engage, and they are fierce. They do not shy away and they are not the circumstances that they were born into. With your support they become nurses, medical technicians, social workers, green leaders, or whatever they choose to be. They give back to those less fortunate than they are and they care deeply about the world.
We’re excited to bring you another HERstory, a series featuring our Unatti Girls as we aim to give each of them empowering opportunities to use their voice and become leaders within their community. This month we’re celebrating Saraswoti.