“I never dreamed I’d be a street Walker”
“I never dreamed I’d be a street walker in the red light district of Nairobi, But believe it or not, that was the assignment I was given when I signed on to be part of the Full Circle Ministry of our church. Mamlaka Hill Chapel sits right next to the campus of Nairobi University and very close to the large tourist hotels and clubs in the city. As we looked around us, we realized these were our neighbours, and we needed to love them. University girls and women in need gravitate to the lucrative earnings of the sex worker.
I went to an extensive training program run by the church and became more and more interested as I heard success stories, and even met some of the women who had broken free from their addiction to selling their bodies for sex. As some of the women admitted, ‘You can earn hundreds of times more selling your body than selling tomatoes or onions.’”
Now, just to clear the air, Alice is a student at Africa International University. She walks the streets to look for young women and rescue them from the broken and desperate life they have found themselves in. She goes with a team, which includes a guy, who is a protection, and who meets the girls, invites them to “talk only” for the same pay they would make in an hour. Alice says that “when we sit in a club and talk with the girls they are almost always very quick to be open and tell their stories and admit that they feel trapped; often because of economics.”
That is when we introduce them to our Full Circle Program, which has many similarities to the 12 Step programs run by Alcoholics Anonymous. It can be a long and hard process, with victories and defeats.
When a woman signs on for the program we find her a sponsor in the church who will walk with her through the process of getting rid of the “addiction,” The women tell us that it doesn’t start that way, but often turns into a physical addiction. The sponsor helps them find a job and a new place to live. The Full Circle ministry has a halfway house the girls can live in while they are making the transition.
Alice says, “There is nothing as rewarding as seeing one of these women turn her life around, get free from that life and go on to succeed in her career and family. It makes it all worthwhile.
It is discouraging when women have a poverty of the mind that keeps them from believing there is hope – but one life changed and freed is all I need to keep me going.”