Teenage pregnancy: She is 14 years and pregnant.

Sarah is 14 years and already six months pregnant. She lives with her mother, a tea vendor who is out of business due to COVID 19 because she used to work at night. Five miles from the capital city is Kawempe where Sarah stays with her mother in a two roomed house. As I toured the dusty congested place, I find Sarah crying and I get closer to find out why. She tells me, she is worried about her state after receiving information that she does not have enough blood. “They have just told me that I lack blood”. On inquiring more about why she badly needs blood, she tells me she is pregnant. It’s here that I find out that Sarah has never attended any antenatal visits. “My mum told me to wait until July when I will be seven months. We don’t have the money to attend the visits. My mum is still looking for money”. Here I pick interest in finding out about the father of the baby. “He ran away. We only had sexual intercourse twice and he ran away because they wanted to arrest him”. This leaves Sarah at the mercy of only her mum who is no longer working. Sarah’s mother who breaks down while narrating the story to me says her daughter conceived and never told her and she is worried about her life and how to look after her in such tough times. “She just sat her primary seven and conceived during holidays. I didn’t know until recently. I no longer work so I don’t even know what to do”. Sarah is one of the 25% Ugandan teenagers that become pregnant by the age of 19 according to the ministry of health. According to the country’s 2011 demographic and health survey, nearly a quarter of girls aged 15 to 19 have had a baby or are pregnant and many drop out as a result. In an interview with High Sound for Children, Dr. Josephine Lovine, said Sarah needs to start her antenatal visits as soon as possible because she needs special attention. “She should be taken to Kawempe Mulago, they will attend to her. She needs immediate care” She says. The executive Director Kayden International, Harriet Kobusingye who was reaching out to vulnerable mothers and pregnant women extended a financial hand to have Sarah start her antenatal visits and called upon everyone who can help Sarah to do so. “We have given her transport to go to the hospital on Monday. I believe it is not too late. We can save, Sarah’s future”. Mrs. Kobusingye said.

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