This is the story of Taonga & Margaret
Taonga is 15 years old & Margaret is 4 months old
Taonga lives with her daughter, her aunt and her cousins in a very remote area in Zambia. She stopped attending school during her pregnancy and doesn't know if she will be able to go back again because her family has no money.
I met Margaret’s father in school. He's older than me. He used to live nearby but now he's moved to another town. He came here when Margaret was born but now there isn’t any communication between us as I don’t have a phone and he doesn’t come to visit.
In school we only learned about periods. I didn’t think I would become pregnant. I've heard that you can have injections though, to prevent pregnancy.
I'm feeling good. I just wonder why I have my baby because it’s not easy for me. I enjoy looking at her but not the responsibility that's involved in taking care of a child. My stepmother helps me out but my baby cries a lot because she is still breastfeeding so I always need to be close by.
I wish I could go back to school or get married so that I can look after my baby better. I would love to be a teacher or work as a community worker. My wish is that one day, Margaret will be able to go to school.
INTERVIEW WITH TAONGA’S AUNT WHO HAS TAKEN CARE OF HER SINCE SHE WAS FIVE.
Taonga is very sad to have the baby. It’s also a lot of work for me since she had her. I’ve my own children to take care of. The father of Margaret once lived around here. He came here and she refused to see him. Then he came again. Taonga says they only had sex three times. I noticed one day that she was getting a big belly and that’s when I took her to the health clinic to take a pregnancy test. We went to the father’s house and told him that he should pay for it. He never paid. Instead he left and moved somewhere else.
“I wish I could go back to school or get married so I can look after my baby well in the future. I would love to become a teacher or a community worker. I hope that Margaret will be able to go to school one day.”