Florence’s Story of Redemption

When Florence finally returned to her land, her story made national headlines.

When Florence’s* first husband was violently murdered in 2010, her late husband’s younger brother married her—as is often the custom in that part of Uganda—and took possession of the land his brother had left for her.  

Florence and her new husband had a child to add to the seven children she had from her previous marriage. Shortly after the birth of their daughter, Florence’s new husband approached a buyer to sell off the land. When Florence confronted him about the sale, he chased her and her children—including his own child—out of their home and into the bush.  

Since then, Florence and her children lived in temporary shelters, relying on handouts and odd jobs to survive. Desperate to get her family back to their land, Florence asked her 18-year-old daughter and her new husband’s son from a prior marriage to petition her new husband to let Florence grow some food on the land to feed her family. In response, he gathered a group of people to brutally assault them, assaulting his step-daughter and gashing his own son’s face in three places. 

Florence’s daughter and son-in-law reported their injuries to the police, but Florence’s new husband fled the town and evaded arrest. Florence contacted Redeem in early 2022, and we took her on as a client. Our investigators tracked him down, and assisted Florence and her family through the process of pursuing justice. 

In August of 2022, Florence’s new husband was arrested and charged with the assault. In April 2023, while still awaiting trial for assault, he agreed in writing to allow Florence and her children to return to their original land. The Gulu Team partnered with local officials to hold an official ceremony in August of 2023 marking the boundaries of her land. Florence has already begun to farm on the land, and plans to move her family onto the land in the near future. 

Florence shared her story at an International Widow’s Day event co-organized by our Gulu Team. New Vision, a national newspaper of Uganda, covered the event and dedicated an entire article to Florence’s story.

*Name changed for privacy

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