It has been about two weeks since the attempted rape in my village. I have offered my phone up to her to use however she wants, such as call family or call Victim Support Services, and it was only used once.
The teenage boy who committed the crime received no percussions for his actions. He still goes about his day, hanging around the village doing whatever he pleases. It appears as though everyone in the village knows about it, but no one seems to want to do anything about him, or even care. This is the second time this boy has committed this crime, and each time nothing has happened to him. This frustrates me, but what is happening to the girl frustrates me even more.
She is struggling, which is completely normal, but no one seems to know how to handle her. I feel what they are doing is inappropriate from a different outlook on life, but it is normal life here in Samoa. I have seen her break down into tears several times, and one of those times her mother saw her, and hit her for acting so vulnerable. Her peers around the village tease her for what happened and call her a liar. I feel so bad for her for going through such a traumatic experience. I am trying to be here, but I am always wondering if it is enough.
In the other island of Upolu another rape incident occurred in a volunteers village. The man who committed a crime was charged a fine by his village, but that was all.
Samoa is really trying to work hard towards its, “No to Rape and Indecent Acts” campaign, but Ii guess campaigns don’t always hit everyone that they were hoping for.
Don't get discouraged, I do feel safe where I am, things can just happen anywhere.