Alinafe Botha | TEDxYouth@Lilongwe
In Malawi, only 18% of girls attend secundary school. Alninafe asks ‘why’ and finds two main reasons.
Alinafe Botha was born to the third wife of a polygamous family. Her mother had separated from her father during the pregnancy after the prospect of him marrying a fourth wife. Alinafe spent her early years with her grandparents until the death of her biological father at age 4. Her mother remarried and she bore two other girls. Unfortunately the stepfather had contracted HIV/AIDS and did not disclose this to the family, consequently the last child was born with the virus.
The mother died in 2008 due to a HIV related illness and with the aid of an ailing grandmother, Alinafe was left to fend for herself and her two siblings.
Her uncle took her to town in the promise of paying for her education, but after a year he, along with the rest of family, began pressuring her to marry at the age of twelve. As per their customs, Alinafe’s sisters from the polygamous families had dropped out of school and were married when they were in standard six and seven respectively.