17 March 2021

"Social work is my path" 

Drucila Mereiles
Drucila Mereiles

Drucila Meireles, pictured here on the right, is a strong woman with an eventful history. As a technical advisor of terre des hommes switzerland in Mozambique, she supports and accompanies the activities of our local partners on sexual violence, empowerment and psycho-social support. Drucila Meireles used to seek help herself in a terre des hommes switzerland youth project in Mozambique. Today she has a particularly good rapport with the young people in the projects. She explains why social work with young people is so important to her.

My name is Drucila Meireles. I am 33 years old and I live with my family in Maputo, the capital of Mozambique. I have some experience working with grassroots organizations in the field of social work, which is my path. From 2009 I have worked at LeMuSiCathe partner organisation of terre des hommes in the province of Manica. In 2017, I was hired by terre des hommes switzerland as a technical advisor in Mozambique.

My work as a technical consultant
As a technical consultant I support our partners in Mozambique with best practice methods and tools in the implementation of their activities. We have from our office in Maputo from daily Contact with the people in charge of terre of hommes switzerland in Switzerlandwho give me support. 

In Mozambique I support and advise our partners whenever they need it. need. We plan their activities together. We find the best way for the needs in their communities and contexts. Twice a year I visit our local partners and see what they do. I talk with Adolescents and also adults, which is from the Projectwork profitenRegularssig I get the Accountability Bhe reports of our partners. I read and comment on them, and I also advise them on writing their Motions and Reports. 

Giving my own life a new chance
It's no problem for me to talk about my Private life to talk about. I have three children in total. I have two girls who are now grown up. My first daughter is fourteen years old and my second is ten. They are from a first marriage I had. It was a forced marriage and I experienced a lot of violence, so I divorced them. 

Me was then for a few years alone with my girls, until three years ago I met someone, fell in love again and decided to give myself another chance. And so far it's good. I am happy, my husband respects me and we have a son together who is now nine months old. We are a happy family, my husband takes good care of the girls. They know that he is not their biological father. 

My childhood and the caesura in my life
As a child, I and my siblings lived with my parents in Zimbabwe. My father came from Chimoio in Mozambique and my mother from Zimbabwe, they both worked in Zimbabwe. Me and my siblings went to Mozambique when I was sixteen years old. Both our parents had died and we were now orphans, so we went to live with my aunt in Chimoio. There I was at the age of nineteen pregnant. My aunt sent me away Sync and corrections by n17t01 my so-called husband - we weren't officially married. It was at all not good and then I also had noI brought my brothers and sisters. 

How I LeMuSica met
When I started in 2009 with LeMuSiCa I was still with my first husband. I was with LeMuSiCa because I had heard that she had a volunteer in a kindergarten searched. At first I did not have a permanent job with LeMuSiCabut I still did my best. I volunteered four hours a day and had I had a little job on the side, because I had to earn money, too.

When I saw the good work that LeMuSiCa I fell in love with social work. I thought: Wow, now I understand what already at my aunt's had been through, even before I got together with my first husband, who treated me badly...e. 

As the oldest child, it had been very hard for me when I had to take over my siblings after the early death of my parents. I had never had the opportunity to experience a place like LeMuSiCa to see where they also Orphans help. So when I was there from 2009, I thought: If only I had known this before! 

But it wasn't too late for me. I now had a place to talk, a place where I could share my experiences with other people, learn of their own experiences, and also, how they managed to get back up. Ausshe was LeMuSiCa a safe place for my siblings, they got support for their school and everything else. That's why I got involved from LeMuSiCa in love. 

What I did at LeMuSiCa worked
The kindergarten, where I started at LeMuSiCa workedwas also my first job with Children. That was not easy, but I learnedto deal with it. With time I learned other activities of LeMuSiCa know. I started with a senior employee at LeMuSiCa named Cecilia. She showed me welche Methods they in empowerment work with girls and boys Apply. 

Suddenly I learned how to do outreach and also counseling. What happened to mer on this kind of social work especially likes, is that others People be of helpwho were also going through the same things I was. It made me feel like I was the best person for the job.n Job am, the means more to me than just making a buck. 

Why I am in social work
To this day, I can see myself in the youngsters ...and put them in their place... v...because I... similar gone through and I've seen violence. I can sympathize with them and that's why they talk to me. I tell the girls and young Women: I, too, have gone through such things. Se'm still here and have a life of my own and now work for LeMuSiCa. You can do it too! 

As a child I always wanted AnwOLDER TOGETHER ...to become... When I was at LeMuSiCa was working, I thought, okay, maybe that's what I should do. The social Awork has done it to me until today, even if it also needs the administrative and coordinating work. Whenever I see the office in Maputo and leave our partner organisations in Mozambique visit and see what's really happening on the groundI'm happy.

Interview: Anna Wegelin

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