Abraham

age 21

The region of Cheptais saw many young men forced to join the militia and were trained to kill, and sometimes engage in many other atrocities. Abraham was one of those young men. He was told if he didn’t, he would be hanged.

“I had to kill countless people and witnessed many die,” said Abraham.

First he was taken to the forest for training which was tough and continued for a month. “It was so cold in the mountains. After fifteen days most men died, or got sick. If you make a mistake your enemies kill you immediately. There were two options – die or stay alive.”

There were four SLDF militia groups. Abraham’s group fought enemies with spears, arrows and guns. The other groups had the task of raping, or looking for vegetables, food and cows. Finally there was the women’s group.

Abraham sought counselling in 2010. Since then there has been a remarkable change in him. “When you share your experience, it is a way of getting relieved in your heart. Men don’t speak out their problems – they rarely share.”

Abraham felt his life was useless, as he had “done bad things to my fellow Kenyans.” Volunteer counsellor Hellen Makoe has helped him to overcome the burden and the bitterness.

His life is still at risk. Abraham is now a target because he is a skilled soldier, but he steadfastly refuses to join fighting groups, even under threat of torture.

He would like a home and to learn skills to become a mechanic or an engineer, as well as a counsellor. His vision is to use his skills to counsel the community, then expand the teaching into the district, and later to teach throughout the country, for which he needs financial support.

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