Mercy was beaten and thrown onto the streets. Now she has hope for the future.
After Mercy’s mother passed away, her father turned his back on her, leaving Mercy to live with her uncle and cousin. Mercy (14) found her new home cramped and stuffy, preferring to explore outside, rather than remain in the house. This behaviour was deemed suspicious and accusations of witchcraft soon followed. A local pastor confirmed that Mercy was a ‘witch’ and, as a result, her uncle began to beat her on a daily basis. Eventually, he threw Mercy out onto the streets to fend for herself.
Mercy sought sanctuary at various local care homes, but was subjected to further abuse and bullying when she told her story and revealed she’d been labelled a ‘witch’. The continuing abuse made it impossible for her to stay at any of these homes. She ended up back on the street. When Safe Child Africa’s local partner found Mercy at a police station, the officers were insulting her and spitting on her because she had been branded a ‘witch’.
When Mercy decided to trust someone to protect her, she was let down again and again.
It is heart–breaking that when Mercy finally decided to trust someone to care for her and protect her, she was let down again and again, all because of the stigma of having been accused of witchcraft.
Thankfully, Mercy is now living with a trusted guardian and is surrounded by friends in her new school. Her case is being followed up with the police, in an attempt to bring to justice those responsible for her mistreatment. Workers from Safe Child Africa have met with Mercy several times and are delighted to see the change in her and to know that she now has hope for the future.