© Priscilla Kampi, text and illustrations
Mentored by Frederick Tebigwayo, Director, Tenda Junior School, near Jinja, Uganda, Africa
Inspiration by Felicity Keats Morrison and Nicola Rodda
Featured Image (cover) © Nicola Rodda (Illustration by Priscilla Kampi, additional artwork courtesy of Pixabay)
All rights reserved
Once upon a time, in a village called Kagoma in Uganda, there lived a girl called Saida. She was so disobedient that she wouldn’t listen to anyone. She didn’t realise that the rules that her parents and other grown-ups made for children were meant to keep them safe.
One day, Saida wanted to go alone to collect firewood in the forest. Her mother refused, but she didn’t listen. She decided to go the forest alone, anyway.
While she was collecting firewood, she saw a big, tall man. He told her to come to where he was. When Saida refused, he started chasing her through the forest. She kept running and running until she reached a nearby road. She cried for help, but it looked like nobody heard her. She kept on running as fast as her legs could carry her, but still the man chased her.
When she saw people coming from a distance, she called for help again, while she was still running. As soon the people saw her running and heard her calling, they knew that something was very wrong. They came and started chasing the man. But he was too fast for them to catch him, so he got away.
The people came to Saida and carried her home, telling her about the forest and that she should not go there alone. When they reached her home, Saida’s parents asked what was wrong. The people told her parents what they had seen with their own eyes. So, Saida’s parents thanked them for bringing her back home.
As the people went back to their own homes, Saida explained everything to her parents. Then she asked for their forgiveness. She said she realised now that their rules were meant to protect her from the bad people in the world outside her home, and she promised that she would never be disobedient towards them from then onwards.
These days she obeys her parents and is glad that they are trying to keep her safe. Her parents are proud of her and say she is a good girl.
Priscilla’s message to all young girls:
If you are a girl, please do not go to the forest alone because there are many problems in forests. Bad people, who want to catch girls, hide there. You can be raped, kidnapped or killed, so please learn from Saida and stop going to the forest alone.
A message from Nicola Rodda to all young girls:
Remember that if you are attacked by a bad person in the forest or anywhere else, it is not your fault, even if you have been disobedient. Children are young and often don’t know what is best for them. It is the grown-ups who hurt children that are bad, because they know that what they are doing is a very bad thing. So, if you are ever hurt by a grown-up, tell another grown-up you can trust straight away. It can be your parents or your teacher or a policeman. The good grown-ups in your life will work hard to help you feel better and to feel safe again.
About the author:
My name is Priscillah Sarah Kampi. I am 13 years old and am in Primary 7 at Tenda Junior School. I live in Kyabirwa Village with my mother and my father. I have five brothers and three sisters. Both my father and mother do not have fixed jobs so they must dig deep to find school fees for me and my brothers and sisters. When I grow up, I want to become a doctor. My intention is to make my father and mother happy.
These are the children of the Brain Power Writing Club that Mr Frederick Tebigwayo started at our school. This photo shows the first meeting of the club. I am third from the right.
Assertion of copyright of the author:
Notwithstanding the fact that this publication is initially being made available free of charge on specific electronic platforms, no part of it may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means other than saving the original electronic/digital file for personal (single person) use only. Printing the electronic file (other than for personal use, as defined), producing a sound or video recording of its content, or any other means of reproduction are prohibited under international copyright laws, except if done so with the written permission of the author herself.
If you enjoyed the story and want to pass it on to others in any format whatsoever, please respect the rights of the author by acknowledging copyright and, if you would like, making a contribution to the further education of Priscilla Kampi or to the further development of the Brain Power Writing Club at Tenda Junior School. You can do so by contacting:
Nicola Rodda by email on , or
Frederick Tebigwayo telephonically or by Whatsapp on +256 758 252115 (Ugandan rates apply).