Kayitesi Esther “mama Kenny”
Mama Kenny is a mother of 6 who lives in the neighborhood of KangondoNyrutarama (A slum commonly known as Banyahe). Which means, “Where do you go to the bathroom ?
She got married when she was 18 and moved to Rwanda. She was widowed with one kid. That child, her oldest, is named Kenneth. She then remarried and now she has 5 kids with her new husband. The husband is absent. He is rarely ever home except to sleep. He is known as the drunkard of the slum. When he is home he is abusive to her and the kids. George paid the house I am in now for me. I lived on the streets with all of my kids for two weeks before coming to George for help. Two of her kids left the house because they could not eat. She misses them dearly and doesn’t know where they are. She began to cry as she told me this. She still takes care of the remaining 4 kids. She hears rumors that he has another wife. Living without a husband in the situation is the hardest part. Trying to feed 4 kids and herself is nearly impossible. Even the kids who are still with her sometimes disappear because of their hunger. Occasionally her family can get a job washing someone’s clothes, but for very little. Her kids were supported by another man who paid for them to go to school, but he has now stopped and her kids no longer attend school.
Mama Kenny is a Christian. She prays that God will keep her children safe. Her house is 80 dollars per month. There is no power. There is no water. She has no education. Finding a job is nearly impossible. Today is the second day that her family has not eaten. She wants what any mother wants. She just wants to feed her children.