This is a hard story and could be a trigger for those who have suffered violence.
We share these hard stories because it’s important to know that real people are being hurt, and helped. This is the story of Layla, who was raped and who is restored.
Layla is 18 years old. She has very little education and works in the fields with her family. They are a happy and tight-knit unit, but they are barely scraping by to stay alive.
Neither of her parents went to school past 5th grade. Layla made it to 8th grade, but her family’s need for the income she could earn outweighed the cost for her to remain in school. This is common for the very poor in India. The cost of food, meager shelter, and health emergencies force families to make hard decisions.
Layla lives in a village where ritualized prostitution is common. Her family never considered giving their daughter to those horrors. They believed she would be safe in the fields, picking vegetables alongside them in the hot Indian sun.
But they were wrong. Layla was raped. A few weeks later, she discovered she was pregnant.
You can imagine the heartache and anger. No one wants this for their daughter. Thankfully, her parents were not willing to let this sin go unpunished.
They turned to the DFN community health worker, Amita. Amita was well-known for helping neighbors with food packs and healthcare. She taught young girls in the village how to defend themselves and how to stand up for their dignity. She was a protector, shepherd, and a fierce friend.
Amita helped the family seek justice at the police station. Their report protected their daughter from suffering further violence from this man. She also provided them with monthly food packets to help stabilize their situation.
Most importantly, Amita is making sure Layla has the support she needs. In addition to counseling, Layla has prenatal care through DFN’s local clinic. Once the baby is born, Layla will enroll in a skills training program so that she can earn a dignified living for her daughter. In her culture, single moms suffer great shame. She may never marry. But she can be safe. She can earn a living wage, raise her child, and begin a whole new, beautiful life.
“She may never marry. But she can be safe. She can earn a living wage, raise her child, and begin a whole new, beautiful life.”
We call this whole care for the whole family. The best way you can provide this kind of whole family transformation is by becoming a Promise Partner. For as little as $35/mo, you can help protect and lift up families like Layla’s.
You can also provide immediate and tangible support through things like: