Author: Upendo Daud, Site Coordinator Temeke Youth Centre
Nuru Ally a girl of 24 years is the last born in the family of Ally Mohamed comprised of four children. His father was the bus driver while his mother was a stay home mother. But his father died in the year 2002.
When she was 10 years of age, she started her Primary education in 2002 and completed her education in 2008 but he was not successful to join to Secondary education.
Fortunately, Nuru was attending Madrasa where she got support from Iran people and she was able to join a secondary school in 2010. In form three she got pregnant and this was mostly a consequence of the fact that she had no information and education on sexual and reproductive health. The school she was attending was catered to religious studies and information on sexual reproductive health and rights was frowned upon and not accessible. Nuru met the father of her baby Ally Abbasi in her hometown streets and life difficulties during her secondary education made her fall victim to early sexual relations with him.
Nuru missed her periods for two months before sensing that she was pregnant, realization of this came when she took her boyfriend’s advice to purchase and undergo a UPT test. She decided to stop going to school when she was seven months into her pregnancy due to the fact that she got scared of frequent dizzy spells.
This was when she decided to tell her mother, who lost hope on Nuru’s future. Ally Abbasi took responsibility for his unborn baby but unfortunately Nuru had a miscarriage at nine months into her pregnancy when she slipped and fell.
After delivery some of her teachers wanted Nuru to go back to school and continue her education, she was however adamant about it because of the words of other teachers who were calling her a murderer. The fact that she had stayed with her pregnancy for seven months without telling anyone made them say that she can put poison in your drink without any hesitations, hence the stigma made her opt against school. Luckily a one of her neighbours had heard about mama wadogo and she encouraged Nuru to join and she did.
Nuru began attending sewing lessons at UMATI in 2012 at the age of 21. She was also taught mathematics, Swahili, English and last but not least information and education on sexual and reproductive health and rights. After six months of studying and graduation, she was given a sewing machine as an aid and this is when she officially started the sewing business.
Currently, Nuru is now married and a mother of one baby. She is a renowned seamstress in Charambe district where her daily profit ranges from 7,000 to 10,000 Tanzanian shillings.
Her dream is to one day be able to provide job opportunities to other women and girls who are facing difficult situations as a result of stigma and most especially teenage mothers.