Uwimana Angela Soki
- Born: 1992
- Country: Refugee from DR Congo
- Lives at Kyangwali Refugee Settlement, Uganda
BIOGRAPHY: This document was written in 2010 and has not been edited.
I am a female Congolese refugee age 18, caring for 7 children, currently living in the Kyangwali refugee settlement.
My father died of torture during the war in DRC. We separated with our mother trying to escape during the killing of the father. I escaped with 3 children to Goma town in North Kivu province where I thought to find my mother. This time I began the suffering life with my young brother and sisters. We failed to get food, water and shelter during the search of our mother. Very hungry, my young brother and sisters cried always asking food because I was their available parent. We passed nights in bushes and on veranda. We didn’t find our mother in Goma and we were told that she went to a the camp in Uganda.
In 2008 I came from Goma back to Rutshuru and fled to Uganda with other refugees.
We crossed the border from DRC to Uganda on 7th July 2009 because we had hoped to meet our mother. UNHCR picked us near the border and provided transport to Kyangwali refugee camp. On our way, we passed in the hills, steep slopes, many corners and high rocky banks on the road sides. One of the refugee woman whom I didn’t know before took her head out through a window her head was mashed against the rock of the hill. She died instantly. All buses stopped after the accident. The dead woman had a very young kid of around 2 weeks old. All people were confused on what to do. Everybody refused to pick up the kid. There were other women that had kids but all refused to pick up the baby from the dead mother. No other relative or the father that was with us on the trip, she was alone.
As I looked to the young innocent baby, I could see her eyes only tears would flow on my cheeks. I could only see her suffering and passing through what I am passing through. All of us had no parents to take care of us. By relating her life story to mine I felt that she should belong to my family. The voice kept telling me, pick her, pick her, pick her, God is the father of orphans. He will use his people to feed you and the baby. By picking her I found out that her legs were fractured during the accident. I was admitted in Hoima hospital for 2 weeks where the plaster was put on her legs.
I have never seen my mother again up to now instead I found 3 children of my uncle who were added to 4 children I had, to make a family of 7 children.
Today I work for people to get milk for the baby. Sometimes I become a beggar when I fail to get casual work. I leave children alone, our shelter has little difference from the outside, sometimes the children get sick and I fail to know what to do. We are exposed to all dangers of life because we are helpless.
I thank PeopleWeaver and Jeanne Ratzloff who visited me. Jeanne helped me with some money that I have been using for baby milk and medication.* She is a parent and only God will pay her back. Live long please!
*I gave her 60,000sh ($30). Later we gave Angela money to start a small business (raising goats).
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Months later Angela's uncle came and now mostly looks after his children.