When I was 13 years old, I was taken away from my family. I was trafficked through Northern African to London, to become a domestic slave for another African family. I didn’t know what was happening and I never expected this to be my life for the next eleven years.

My life was not my own anymore. I had to wake up at 5 am every day to prepare the family breakfast and would not stop working until at least 9 pm every evening.

I was not allowed to walk around the house unless it was to work. I had to stay in the room in which I was working, and had to sleep in the children’s room. I was also not allowed to eat my meals with the family. I had no friends and was not allowed to speak to anyone. I was only permitted to write to my mother occasionally at the control of the family who had enslaved me. If I refused to do the work that was given to me, I was threatened.

After ten years, I couldn’t take it anymore. It was when I was out food shopping for the family that I just slumped to the floor. I was desperate. A stranger stopped and asked what was wrong. I was scared to talk to her, as I was not allowed to talk to anyone that hadn’t been approved by my enslavers, but I was so depressed and isolated that I let the lady take me for a cup of tea. She was nice and became my only friend.

After one year, I decided that I could trust her and told her about my enslavement and long-term abuse. She gave me the courage to talk to the police and together we informed them of what had happened and I was finally rescued from my life of imprisonment.

I have been looked after by Migrant Help now for nearly a year and I am happy to say that my life has completely changed. This last Christmas was joyous. I had turkey and presents, and I went to church. I am now training to be an accountant and I spend all my free time at the library learning. I have a friend who wiped away my tears, prayed with me in the hard times and looks after me very well.

I have forgiven the traffickers for what they did to me. All the pain and anger has left me. I am happy now. I don’t cry anymore.

In fact, I have now recorded a song about my journey to freedom. The first time I performed it, my Migrant Help case-worker and her team came to support me.