Napeyok had to stop her education in primary six at the age of 15 because of poverty. She migrated to Nairobi to work and hopefully build a better life, but her experience there turned horrific. She was overworked by her employer at a young age and when she couldn’t take it anymore, she ran to the streets. Her survival on the streets turned out to be tougher than she thought. Luckily, she was repatriated back home, safely reintegrated in her family and currently being supported to set up her salon business.
Napeyok was safely repatriated and reintegrated into her family in August 2021 by Dwelling Places in partnership with Terre des Hommes Netherlands. She currently lives with her parents in Napak, Uganda and depends on them for support —her mother sells charcoal whereas the father works as a teacher.
“I have just graduated and received a certificate in hairdressing. The course was for four and a half months. I felt good about it. I looked forward to every lesson because I have a passion for hairdressing. Even before the course, I would make trials by plaiting my friends' hair because I enjoyed it,” Napeyok said happily. After completing and graduating from her training, Napeyok is empowered to open her own hair salon and inspire other children who’ve had a similar experience.
Apart from the hairdressing training, Napeyok was also supported to acquire other skills such as psychosocial competency, problem solving, critical thinking, empathy and building healthy relationships. “This has helped me align my life better than before. I used to depend on information that I received from my peers of which some of it was misleading,” she said. Having been brought back home and supported to acquire skills in her area of passion, is the biggest change Napeyok affirmed to have received. Her advice to other children is that they should listen to their parents as long as they are leading them in the right direction. She added that they should avoid peer pressure, which often misleads them. She’s also calling upon community leaders to protect children from child trafficking and sexual exploitation.
Napeyok continues to show resilience at home due to the support she has received. She is now an advocate for children who are still being exploited in Nairobi and those that have been trafficked to other parts of the country. She is being supported and monitored by the project team. Napeyok received her items in April 2022 to start her hair dressing business in Lorengecora.