Orphans & Vulnerable Children
Off the Streets Forever
Néné Mputu was born in Lubumbashi in southern DRC. Although her grandfather was a high-ranking government official, her parents separated when she was young. She lived with her father until 2003 when her mother called her to come to Kinshasa. Her mother had been diagnosed with AIDS and later died in her arms. No longer receiving support from either side of her family, Néné was alone and struggled to support herself; she eventually resorted to prostitution to survive. One of her clients eventually took her in, and she gave birth to a son, Mardoché, but the father later abandoned them both.
Néné desperately wanted to avoid a return to prostitution and sought help at Africare’s local partner, Christ Secours de Faible (Christ’s Help for the Weak), where Africare supplies sewing machines for classroom training. There she completed seamstress training and was also selected to be part of a group receiving micro-grants from Africare-DRC for workshop start-ups. Together the women have established the “New Fashion” sewing workshop in Bumbu Commune of Kinshasa.
Now 23, Néné still struggles to make ends meet for herself and her son, but she has never since returned to prostitution. Néné credits Africare’s support for changing her life.