Danielle* is a 25-year-old single mother of 2 who lives in Bugomoka on the outskirts of Bujumbura, the capital.
Every morning, Danielle carries her baby on her back with a load of vegetables, hoping to make ends meet for herself and her two children.
With the little she makes, she is very proud that she no longer has to beg in the streets.
Danielle grew up as an orphan and never had a chance to attend school. The only job she could get was to become a housemaid.
She’d been working for three years when she got pregnant. She hid her pregnancy from her employees for months but was fired when her bump started showing.
It was 2015, during the Burundi political crisis. She searched for shelter, but no one was willing to host her. At nine months pregnant, Danielle was alone. She slept in ravines and on the sidewalks of the streets of Bujumbura.
She had to deliver her baby alone at 2am and waited for someone passing by to cut the umbilical cord. It was a desperate start in life for her little one, and Danielle was conscious of the risks to herself and her child at this particularly vulnerable point in her life. She didn’t want to raise her baby in the streets, so she moved in with a man who was an alcoholic. She hoped he would be a father to her child and a good husband, but he turned out to be very abusive.
She decided to move out despite knowing she would return to the street, this time with two young children. During that time, she met someone who connected her to the Green Land Alliance (GLA) and has helped her since.
She is now part of a savings and loans group. She no longer has to struggle to get capital for her small vegetable business because whenever she needs it, they lend her money, and as soon as there’s a profit, she promptly repays the loan.
The GLA team praise God for Danielle for overcoming all the hardships she’s passed through. Please continue to pray and support GLA’s work through these solidarity groups that come alongside many women in situations like Danielle, providing immediate aid and ongoing support to lift them out of the cycle of poverty. The groups also allow the women to build friendships and encourage one another, bringing hope amidst much despair.