My name is Nelson Njoroge. I am 19 years old. I live in Nairobi, Kenya.
I have been brought up in a deeply religious Christian household. My dad is a Reverend and my mom is a pastor. I have not been my dad's favorite for my 'girlish' tendencies in how I do things. Since I was a child he has been abusive towards me, both physical and mentally. His defence is that he was toughening me up and making me a man. I have suffered since I was a child. I have been seriously beaten for something as petty as putting on lip gloss. I have been beaten because of how I do things, how I walk, how I talk, etc. Apparently I have never been man enough. My love for the kitchen has landed me in trouble more times than I could remember. In an African household, kitchen duties are feminine. My mom has always defended me. She has always loved me or so I thought.
On 6th October, as we were having dinner, I decided to come out to my family. I made the choice to tell them I was gay. Looking back, I shouldn't have done that. That decision has completely changed my life for the worse. I just hoped maybe they would accept me. I was just tired of being in the closet. I was tired of hiding who I am.
That night, all hell broke loose. I was scolded and insulted. Things I heard that night still make me cry. Despite all, I love my dad but he told me he wishes I died when I was little because all I have done is bring shame to the family. I was disowned and IMMEDIATELY chased out of the house at around 9:00 PM. I cried and begged but my dad literally said he would not live with a devil's advocate. I cried to my mom, but she would not hear any of it. Yes, I know she fears my dad but she should have said something. But no, she just stood there and watched. I was told to look for other parents and another home. My dad said he would kill me if I ever decided to come back home. Apparently, they don't want me to "spoil" my little brother and make him gay. At Least I was allowed to take my backpack in which I carried a pair of jeans and 3 tee shirts. All I had was savings of $20.
That night I slept on the roadside. I spread my jacket down and lay there crying and very scared. The morning after, I tried calling my mom but she never answered. I called my dad and he told me never to call him again.So once again, I slept on the streets. My savings slowly depleted as I bought food and water. Am 19.All my friends are basically the same age. All of them live with their parents and most are from low income families, taking up another mouth to feed is out of the question. Furthermore, no body can accommodate a gay guy. So I am all on my own with no one to run to. I can't go to the authorities. Being gay in Kenya is a crime and people are actually imprisoned for the offence.
Two days later, I was scared , desperate and suicidal. So I shared my feeling on Reddit's LGBT community. At Least there I felt some love. A random redditor saw my story and sent me some money to help me get started. She sent $100 through pay pal. With this, I went to another town where I intend to start afresh. Nobody knows me.Nobody knows my shame. I got a room where I can stay. The room is a storage room for market traders. I rented the room for 15 days at $2 a day. It has no electricity, no water. It is just a dusty room. I bought a second hand mattress at $35, some old bed sheets at $5 and 10 litres of water at $1. The remaining amount I saved it up for food. That is how my life started. A pic of this set up is included. [the attached pic pic]. Unfortunately, I don't have any blankets as I can't afford them.So I just use my blue jacket as a blanket. That redditor saved me from suicide. She saved me from harsh rainy conditions been experienced right now. I will be forever grateful to her for giving me hope.
Currently, I have no one in my life.Nobody wants anything to do with me. So I am on my own in the streets at 19 years. I had a whole life ahead of me, I wanted to get into college and maybe get a job and have a good simple life but my crime was been gay.
At the moment, I have no money on me. Not even a single shilling. I am scared of starving.I am scared of being chased out of my room which is now home.I am just scared. I work at a small local food place cleaning dishes and wiping the tables. I am not paid. The payment is 2 glasses of water and food at night. Sometimes, food is not left over so I go hungry. Again my "girlish" nature doesn't sit well with the owner.
I am in a very desperate situation.I really need any help that comes my way.
My target is $2500. Yes, I know this is a lot of money. I will use the money to survive.Which is basically the rent, food and water. I want to enroll in a catering school. The fees will come from the donation. I know how to bake cakes but I want to be better and also learn some business skills. Once I finish the classes, I want to rent a shop, buy an oven and basic equipment to help me start baking. This is what I intend to do with my life. I can't feel sorry forever, I can't ask for donations forever so I will use every penny to help me stand on my feet. I can not repay everyone who will help me but I will ensure that anyone who comes to me for help, I will always be there for them. Your kindness can only be repaid by kindness to another.