At 15 Alinafe lived in the Dowa district and was attending the local high school on a scholarship. She was very intelligent, had a beautiful smile, and dreamed of becoming a nurse. She was also an orphan who lived with her aunt and uncle.
Sadly, at 16 her dreams of becoming a nurse were lost. Alinafe was forced to marry a man when she was just a girl. Her aunt and uncle arranged the marriage to alleviate the financial strain of having an extra person in the house to feed and clothe. Her bride price was about $26 USD. Her dreams of becoming a nurse were lost.
Now in her early 20’s, she still has the same beautiful smile but does not seem to have the same life and energy that she had as a teenager. She was full of life and energy when she was able to go to school and had dreams of becoming a nurse.
Instead, life has been difficult for her. She is still married and has a young daughter. Her husband sells used shoes by the roadside. They live day to day, never knowing if they will have enough money to survive another week.
Alinafe would like to go back to school and finish her education. But that is just a dream. She and her husband are stuck in a cycle of poverty. Selling used shoes does not bring in enough money for either her or her husband to afford to finish their education. It barely brings in enough money to survive.
They know that they do not want this cycle to continue with their daughter. They have decided that their daughter will get an education. Alinafe says, “My husband wants our daughter to go to school and be educated. He does not want our daughter to marry early and struggle with life like I did. That is why he is trying his best to send her to school even though we don’t have enough.”
Alinafe Girls Rescue Center is one way to help change the culture. You are invited to join these Malawians and help them change the culture of their country. Help them to provide safe places for girls to go when they are released from a forced marriage. Help them to provide skills training for these girls so they can support themselves.
Donate today to be a part of changing girl’s and women’s lives in Malawi.