Jacinta's Story

“Now that I have been treated I hope that I can go back and work with my community to gain access to the loans that will help me to grow my business."

The birth of Jacinta’s second child was very difficult. The labour was long and painful, and resulted in Jacinta, who was 21 at the time, developing a fistula. The impact this has had upon her life is unimaginable. “I was my husband’s first wife. We were very happy together before I developed this condition. But as soon as it happened he left me. He is now married again with two other wives.”

Jacinta lived with chronic incontinence and the discomfort, shame and pain associated with it for 8 years despite seeking treatment from different facilities in her local area. Nobody was able to help her or provide successful treatment to alleviate her pain. “My father always supported me, he used to look for treatments for me. But when he passed away there was nobody left to help me.”

Fistula has had a huge impact upon Jacinta’s ability to earn a living. “I was a small scale farmer. There is a group in my village that distributes small loans to people to help them to grow their business but I wasn’t able to get involved. I couldn’t socialise with them, and so I couldn’t access the financial support I needed.”

When Jacinta heard about free fistula treatment on the radio she couldn’t believe her ears. After almost a decade of suffering there was a way for her pain to end, and for her dignity to be restored. “I have been very well received since my arrival at CCBRT. I am receiving all of my treatment for free, just like the ambassador told me. He gave me my bus fare and pocket money for the journey. My surgery went well, and I am recovering quickly.”

Jacinta is one of nearly 2,000 women whose dignity has been restored by the treatment provided at CCBRT. After surgery Jacinta hopes to return to her community and build her farming business. “Now that I have been treated I hope that I can go back and work with my community to gain access to the loans that will help me to grow my business. I will be able to travel to markets to sell my produce, and I will have a better relationship with the people in my community.”