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Mirza’s Story

By Sara McGeough

Mirza arrived at New Horizons in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic in January 2021. With no parents to protect her, she had been raped and sexually abused by a family member. Her first few months with us were very challenging, and she remained scared and distrustful of our staff and the other girls. Struggling to deal with her trauma she isolated herself, crying alone. 

Our team of counselors worked tirelessly with her, trying to provide her with the comfort and care she so desperately needed. She didn’t know how to read or write even at a very basic level, and so our teachers took small steps teaching her first in Telugu. Over time, she learned to respect the staff that were trying so hard to help her and little by little she has started to heal. 

In 2022, she turned 18 years old and moved on to our Transition House, happy to be continuing her journey with us. Here she learned tailoring, saree embroidery and domestic skills. In June 2023, she will start a new job working part-time as a janitor at a local school. She is thrilled to have found a dignified way to support herself financially as she continues her journey of restoration. We are so proud of her and how far she has come! Her name has been changed in order to protect her privacy.