Lagos, Nigeria, a city of 21 million has only a handful of rape crisis centres and the largest is in danger of closing. Started in 2013 by Partnership for Justice, the Mirabel Centre has helped hundreds of rape victims, many of them minors, adjust physically and mentally to the aftermath of assault. The centre is housed in a dim corridor in the Lagos State Teaching Hospital and has a small dedicated staff. These women have worked tirelessly with an underserved and often unacknowledged population. But after two years, their funding from the UK Department for International Development is due to come to an end and this vital and necessary organization is faced with shutting their doors on the rape survivors they desperately want to help. Survivors like Mercy :
“One day she returned from school with three friends. A 17-year-old male cousin had been harassing her, and that night he brought four other men to the house. For Mercy, everything from the moment he began to rape her is a blur.
Her next memory is of waking up in the hospital the following day, and being told what had happened.
All of the girls were raped, possibly multiple times by more than one of the attackers, but Mercy does not know for sure because she blacked out. One of her friends did not survive; another died last year as a result of the injuries she sustained on that night. Mercy and one other girl are now the only survivors.”
Their funding is coming to an end and securing financial backing has been fruitless as many corporate funders don’t want to be connected to a rape centre. The purpose of this gofundme campaign is to help keep the Mirabel Centre open for the foreseeable future while more permanent funding is secured. It costs about $50 to help one survivor. $5000 will serve 100 and every dollar counts to test, feed and counsel all who walk through the centre’s doors seeking support. The Mirabel Centre is essential to the ecosystem of such a large population and we cannot let it close. Help us #SaveMirabel.
Ms. Itoro Eze-Anaba of Partnership for Justice , which runs the Mirabel Centre, has given permission to raise funds on behalf of the centre. All funds (minus gofundme's cut) will be given to Partnership for Justice in it's entirety