This is the heart touching story of Elizabeth, one of our 2021 courageous refugees students who has cross 5 countries, fighting for her dreams...
"My name is Elizabeth N Davies, I’m from a sub-Saharan nation in West Africa called Liberia.
It is bordered by Sierra Leone to the northwest, Guinea to the north, Cote d’Ivoire to the east and the Atlantic Ocean to the South and West. The climate is tropical, hot and humid all year round, with a rainy season from May to October due to the African monsoon, and pretty frequent rains in the other months except in the short dry season that runs from December to February, which is more marked in the north. The natural resources that are found in Liberia include iron ore, timber, diamond, gold and hydropower.
Despite of all its natural resources, the economy of Liberia is extremely underdeveloped, largely due to the First Liberian Civil war from 1989 – 1996. After that there were series of war that broke up. Liberia was the First African Nation to have a female president. Ellen Johnson Sirleaf who served as the 24th president of Liberia from 2006 to 2018. Liberia got its independence on July 26, 1847.
I left Liberia by foot during the civil war with my parents to seek refugee in Sierra Leone where we stayed as a refugee for a year and half until the Sierra Leone war broke up. We ran to Guinea by foot through the jungle surviving on eatable plants and fruits in the forest.
Drinking water from rivers that had dead bodies floating over. The option we had is to push the bodies in the middle of the water with stick and drink. And continue moving. We stayed in Guinea for a year in the jungle because we couldn’t walk any more. Everyone feet had sore. One night rebels broke out in our camp looking for men power to join them and women to cook for them. We had to run with our aunty leaving our mom and Dad behind. We managed to enter the capital city of Guinea, Conakry. Where boarded a truck that was transporting Cows to cote d’Ivoire.
I stayed in Ivory Coast for 12 years as a refugee but didn’t benefited anything from the refugee program. My aunty refused to register my siblings and me as her children or nieces and nephew. She said she didn’t want us to be resettle with her and becomes her lability. She later got resettle to America by UNITED NATION (UN) leaving us to survive on our own. We were kicked out of the house because we couldn’t afford the rent. We slept at the bus station for a long time. We were forced into child labor, had to work for people in exchanged for food. I became a single mother out of Rape and the perpetrators went scout free because I had no one to bring them to justice.
When the war broke up in Ivory Coast in 2002, we had no choice but to run back to a country that was stay unstable (Liberia.) We walked from Danane a city in Ivory Coast to Liberia border. I lost my oldest sister in the cote d’Ivoire war. She got hit by straight bullet while we were running for our lives. We tried carry her to seek help, but she later gives up. And we lay her by the roadside and kept moving. Since then, I don’t really know what happened to her body. If she was buried, got crush by cars, or eaten by animals. Hoping to go back one day and find that spot where I left her laying down.
We were in Liberia for few months another rebel war broke out again, and we were blessed to get on a fishing boat to GHANA.
I got in Ghana; we register as a refugee. Stated getting support from UNHCR things were moving on well. Going for interviews hoping that one day we will be resettled to another country. One day, I when for my monthly food supply during the distribution and I was told our names are no longer on the list.
I went to the refugee office and I was asked what am I doing in Ghana, that my son and I have been relocated to America. I was in shock! My son and I identity were stolen and sold to a Ghanaian family and they went to America.
My son and I were back to square one. the struggle continues. Living as a refugee but can’t get any benefit anymore. I had to drop at of College to send my son to school. Because I couldn’t afford both of us fees.
I later found my parents 2013 travel to Liberia to see them leaving my son with a friend because he was stay in school. And then EBOLA broke out couldn’t go back to Ghana. I lost my father during the EBOLA crises. My mom out of frustration, got stroke till now still can’t do anything by herself. She can’t even remember her own children names. After the EBOLA, I went back to Ghana got in contact with someone who promised to bring me to Jordan to study and work. That will enable me take care of my son in Ghana and my sick. I was so happy, sold all my little valuable items pay the money he asked for. When my visa came out left my son with a friend and came to Jordan.
When I got in Jordan, my passport and return ticket, and other documents were taken from me by the person who brought me to Jordan including my phone.
I was given two options: 1. To work for him as a sex worker 2. Work as a house help in people houses and give the money to him, and on weekends, I will go to people houses to braid their hair or their children hair.
I took the second option and I worked for 2 and the half giving the money to him. He only gives me $50 dollars every month to send to my son out of all money I was working for. And I was only allowed to speak to my son 3 times in the month. On the 1st, 15th, and 30th.and on the 30th was when I was allowed to do video call with my son. One faithful day, I call it my day of freedom! I was allowed to go alone to braid a lady hair. I took that opportunity to explain my challenges. She couldn’t believe that such things like that was happening in Jordan. She was in shock. Immediately, she contacted a friend, who called the person that brought me to Jordan to give my documents back to me and set me free or he will call the police for him. That’s how I was set free. But I was kicked out of his house and he stopped me from going to any of the houses I worked in. he gives the job to other girls.
Out of his own fear he left Jordan and told me never to back Liberia till I hear he’s dead. Or else my body will be found in the street if I dare. He went and told his family that I made him leave Jordan they called and threatening my life if I go back to Liberia. That’s how I’m stuck in Jordan. My only survival in Jordan is waiting for someone to call me to get their hair braided or weave. Which doesn’t happen often. My days I sleep hungry.in other to save money. To pay Bills and take care of my responsibilities.
My education background, I dropped out of collage in my 2nd year because I couldn’t afford my son and I school fees at the same time.so I dropped out in other for him to go, but that didn’t stop me from learning. I went to the beauty school, became a professional beautician, specialize if African braids, I got a Diploma in Christian Counseling, and a certificate of Achievement in Trauma Healing & Peace Education. My son finished high school over a year now haven’t been able to get him in to college can’t afford the college fees.
My short term goal is to explore myself in all the courses offer by Chams, and follow the course that relate and conform to my passion. I want to make my best efforts in to succeed in becoming a professional software developer and cyber security expert.
The nature of the job I would like to do is, working as a Software Developer or cyber security expert.
My dream is to work in companies that develop software or IT Security Company.
During my study and research, I found out as much as possible about Chams approach to learning. From that research, and also from speaking to others who are familiar with the school, the department’s approach to learning makes me feel confident that I will be given the best support during my time of study that will enable me to realize my dream."
Elizabeth N Davies