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The Final Straw in a Saga of Abuse

Trigger Warning: The following narrative contains content related to experiences of Gender-Based Violence (SGBV).

Imaara stands as a beacon of resilience, founded by survivors of Sexual and Gender-Based Violence (SGBV) for survivors. Every aspect of our NGO is crafted with the deep understanding that only those who have endured the harrowing journey of survival truly comprehend its nuances. From our programs to our support networks, we are driven by the unwavering commitment to empower fellow survivors. Each story shared within our community is a testament to the strength and courage that resides within every survivor. Together, we create a safe space where voices silenced by fear and shame are given power. Our mission is not merely to offer aid but to ignite a spark of hope in the hearts of those who have felt the darkest depths of despair. In this sanctuary of understanding and solidarity, survivors find solace, healing, and the unwavering belief that they are not defined by their past traumas, but by the strength it took to survive them.

The Words of an Anonymous Survivor

2 years ago I found myself trapped in a tumultuous relationship, my dreams of escape

overshadowed by the looming threat of violence. I had gathered every penny I could to flee

with my son, but my ex partner’s volatile temper kept me ensnared in a cycle of fear and


One fateful night, he returned home intoxicated, seething with rage over a trivial matter.

Enraged that I hadn't consulted him before accepting money from her sister for a simple

hairdo, he lashed out at me violently. Gripping my braids tightly, he slammed my head

against the wall, his words cutting like knives as he accused me of disobedience and worse.

Then, without warning, he reached for a pair of scissors and mercilessly sheared off my hair,

(My sister’s wedding was the next morning) stripping me of my dignity and identity.

As I sat in the aftermath of his cruelty, contemplating my options, a storm of conflicting

emotions raged within me. The pain of betrayal and self-betrayal cut deep, overshadowing

the physical wounds inflicted upon me. Thoughts of revenge and escape warred in my mind,

each vying for dominance in my shattered psyche.

But amidst the chaos of my despair, a flicker of determination ignited within my soul. I

realized that I couldn't continue living in the shadow of his cruelty, that I deserved better

than the life of fear and degradation I had been forced to endure.

With trembling hands and a heart heavy with uncertainty, I made a choice. I would defy the

shackles of fear and codependency that bound me to him, and I would break free, no matter

the cost.

Summoning My courage, I waited until he left for work, then gathered My belongings and

fled into the unknown, my son strapped securely to her back. It was a leap into the abyss, a

leap of faith into an uncertain future, but it was a leap I knew I had to take.

And though the road ahead was fraught with challenges and obstacles, I knew that I had

finally taken the first step towards reclaiming my life and my dignity. For in that moment of

defiance, I had set myself on a path towards freedom, towards a future where I would no

longer be defined by the scars of her past.

To any woman who finds themselves trapped in a similar situation, know this: You are not

alone, and you are not powerless. With courage and determination, you can break free from

the chains that bind you, and you can carve out a new path for yourself, one filled with

hope, dignity, and the promise of a brighter tomorrow.


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