Rehema, a Congolese refugee, had recently arrived at the Kyangwali refugee camp in western Uganda when she went to collect firewood with her aunt. Alone in a forest, two men confronted them.
“They told my aunt, if you want your life [to be spared], you have to leave this girl for us. My aunt said … ‘I’d rather you kill me,’” Rehema says.
The men physically assaulted Rehema’s aunt before sexually assaulting Rehema, who was 18 years old at the time. Strangers found her and helped her return to the refugee camp.
“When that happened to me… we had just arrived,” Rehema says. “We didn’t know the laws of Uganda. It was as if we were in darkness.”
Rehema, now 21, says it was one of the most difficult moments in her life.