Anne told her abortion story to SAAF – Safe Abortion Action Fund, who gave us permission to share Anne’s story.
I recently went to the health centre for post-abortion care. I was referred there by VODA* and I was helped by the mid-wife, her name was Grace. The VODA community volunteers found me at my grandmother's house. They brought me to the health centre.
I was on my way to visit my grandmother, when a man raped me. After he finished with me he told me to go back home and never to tell anyone about it. I went back home to my parents. I realised I was pregnant because I found out I had missed my periods. Then I told my mother.
So, then I had to go back to my grandmother's house. She said we were going to the hospital, but it wasn't like the one where Grace works, where I finally got my post-abortion treatment. She took me to a place where a woman gave me some herbs. Then we went home and the thing came out. I was bleeding. Then the VODA counselor came to my home and suggested to my grandmother that I should be taken in for treatment.
I had learnt about how girls can get pregnant but I didn't know anything about safe abortion. In Luwero, where I come from, many girls use herbs to abort but I had not tried it because I had not had any sex until that man forced me.
I am telling my friends about safe abortion and contraceptive services but I also need to be given more information about it because I was not taught about most of what the midwife was telling me. I know that women can take precautions for family planning like pills, but my mum told me it's only for married people.
I am very thankful to VODA, I maybe could have died if the counselors hadn't asked to rush me to the health centre for post-abortion care.
* VODA Uganda is a grassroots organization. Their 'Strengthening Community Response against Unsafe Abortion' is a project to empower young people as change-makers in their schools and communities.