These children are members of the extremely vulnerable street children found in Kabale Municipality, Southern West of Uganda. All born from one mother, Watergate, but from different unknown fathers looking homeless, malnourished with big bellies; you found them jigger infested, very dirty with torn clothes and barefoot, loitering at the dust bins of Kabale City Streets scavenging and eating food leftovers and the thrown hard layers scooped from the bottom of saucepans, which they term as “chapatis”.
Their mother, an alcohol addicted woman with mental health disorders problems, with her aforementioned four children stay in a house without latrine or any furniture (e.g. no mattress or anything to lay on while asleep), which a sympathiser had given her to keep after the former occupant had been discovered dead mysteriously in Rwamukundi cell, Nyakambu, Kabale municipality.
When you ask her what plans does she have for her children or how do they survive; she raised her arms in frustration; “I have no plans. Do you expect me to steal just to get money to send my children to school or feed them? It is everyone for himself or herself!’’ she replied. How far this family will go on given the deplorable living conditions. Dark clouds around the horizon are foreseen if nothing is done! Where is hope for their future?? Only time will tell.
The situation must be horrible in this family. At night their door is ever wide open; because each member (young and old) move out and return at their own wish. It can be the children home first or the mother depending on how the day goes. Moreover the children, young as they are, are notorious for hurling obscenities to all who care to listen! It’s only ‘Watergate’ – the mother (We wonder what her real name is!)- who takes care of them.
These children have been routinely sexually abused; the girls by some boys – usually much older – who often spend a night in their house in the absence of their mother. The children also narrated that they usually listen to their mother in passionate acts. What a life!!!