A steady stream of urine dripped down Neema’s legs and soiled the ground wherever she went. People shunned her — she stank and couldn’t control one of her body’s most basic functions. She closed her business. She received abusive treatment from those around her.
Married at 21, Neema lived happily with her husband and her first 3 children whom she delivered successfully at home with a Traditional Birth Attendant. At 33, Neema conceived her fourth child.
She was to endure four days of excruciating pain as her body strained to deliver the baby. Neema was finally taken to Lira Regional Referral Hospital where she underwent a caesarian section. The baby had died during labor, and a tear had developed between Neema’s vagina and bladder, resulting in an obstetric fistula.
Fistula survivors like Neema often become outcasts because of the smell and shame. There are 140,000 to 200,000 women living with the condition in Uganda alone.
Neema suffered with a fistula for 3 months before a community member heard on the radio that women with Neema’s condition could receive free surgery at TERREWODE, WFF’s partner in Uganda.
Neema received life-changing surgery, transportation, literacy education and entrepreneurial training at TERREWODE!
Neema has reopened the brew business she was forced to close in Uganda after she developed a fistula! She recently became a wholesale seller supplying the rest of Lango sub-region and is expanding to other regions as well. She’s even introduced new products, having added items in baking and cooking to her portfolio!
TERREWODE has helped shape my life. I’m now a responsible woman, first through enabling me to get free fistula treatment and later on equipping me with financial skills and knowledge that have enabled me to run my business.