Keeping Children safe

Nature: Physical Abuse

Location: Nairobi
Age: 7

A case involving 7-year-old *Jessica was reported to the helpline by a concerned neighbour. Jessica lived with her mother and stepfather and had a younger sister who was 3 years old. Jessica’s step father had been beating her and inflicting bruises on her head, face, buttocks making it hard for her to move around. This had been happening almost daily for about five weeks. Since the step father works as a medical practitioner, he would bring her medicine to heal the wounds. Jessica’s mother was afraid of her husband and chose not to report the case. The helpline took up the case and offered play and art therapy to Jessica through the school and was willing to testify in court against her father. Her mother however, refused to prefer charges against her husband. She refused to write her statement and coached Jessica to deny any allegations of the abuse. The family then relocated to an unknown location and have since not been traced. It is very unfortunate that Jessica’s safety net was not available to provide her with the safety she required to thrive as a child.