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My Grand Mother Refused to Pay My School Fees Because I am a Girl-Teenage Mother


Raised by her paternal grandparents in Nakifuma, Mukono the Metropolitan side of Kampala, Felisha Nakanwagi (not her real name), an orphan and a teen mother did not find life worthy as she dropped out of school as early as senior two.

Unlike her siblings Nakanwagi found her luck with an Austrian resident who offered her a study sponsorship; unfortunately little did Nakanwagi know that with the end of the sponsor’s working contract in Uganda, it would be the end of her studies. 

At 17, optimistic Nakanwagu was kept in the dark by her grandparents about the sponsor’s whereabouts. She instead finds out the hard way when she and her two sisters were forced out of school to pave way for the other four siblings to also have an education.

Her grandmother, thought it otherwise as she insisted on having boys in school at the expense of the girls.

Nakanwagi could later be confined to a friend who recommended her for a book-making job in Mukono, the job that would require her and their workmates to move to different areas as per contract. 

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In this job she  earned at least shs, 100.000 a month which could help her rent off a house for the days they spent working at the different stations as well as sustain her life 

While on one of her working trips, Nakanwagi recalls getting in contact with her baby’s father, then a colleague at work who also happened to be a nephew to the manager.

She could then shift from where she and her elder sister were renting to a room settled into with her boyfriend.

Before the year could end, Nakanwagi noticed some rather strange changes in her menstrual cycle something that caused her panic.

Her boyfriend had since switched stations from Buikwe where they both were to Nakisunga in Mukono.

“While he was at Nkisunga, he sent me Shs5000 to go and have a pregnancy test, however, when l confirmed my pregnancy, my thoughts and prayer were that l abort the baby something that didn’t settle well with my boyfriend,” she said.

She would then secretly start her antenatal visits until when she was seven months pregnant when her sister and boyfriend convinced her to open up to her grandparents.

Two weeks after her birth in April 2022, she returned to her grandparents’ home but the situation was never satisfactory.

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“I would be left alone to myself at home with my baby, fetch for what to eat and also work on the house cores not until they returned home at 7 in the night,”

“In August, out of frustration, l set out to Soweto a slum  in Namuwongo with a friend who recommended him for a hairdressing training job but later realized that they were not in for training students”

At Soweto, she then settled at her friend’s house where she was later evicted by her friend’s aunt who happened to be the house landlord.

She was then introduced to the organization that would later teach her hairdressing, and stay with her child. Since then, Nakanwagi has never returned to her grandparents’ home.  

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