When Thama was told she would be appearing before the magistrate (judge), tears of joy streamed down her cheeks as she yelled, “Thank you Jesus. I have been praying for this day—even at school I felt it in my spirit that something good was coming my way! I really thank you, Jesus!”
Thama was abused when she was younger. As a result, she had been in and out of care facilities throughout her life. In 2019, she was brought to the Beautiful Dream Society Shelter for Victims of Human Trafficking for protection and to guarantee that her testimony about her abuse would not be tampered with by her perpetrator trying to contact her. Shortly after Thama first came to BDS, she appeared before the courts. However, she could not testify since she was not mentally ready because of the trauma she had suffered. At that time, she was so anxious that she could not even say her name in court, so the trial of her perpetrator was postponed.
In the meantime, BDS social workers, staff, and counselors cared for Thama and helped her understand she had value. She was also moved into our Children’s Homes program when she was ready, where she benefitted from the customized homeschool program for victims and attended public school.
Recently, she had to appear again before the magistrate to give her statement. This time, in her narrative, she bravely pointed out who abused her, how she was abused, and how she was rescued. She needed help here and there to clarify her points, but she went beyond what she thought was her ability. The perpetrator cross-examined her, and she politely answered him. Understandably, this process has been challenging for Thama, but she experienced a significant victory in facing her perpetrator. We thank God she overcame her fear and spoke the truth in court.
Thama is grateful for her BDS family, who will remain with her each step of the way until the trial is done. Her BDS family will work with her to ensure she can move forward effectively into the next phase of the life that stretches before her. We believe that good things are in store for Thama.