Missing Girls Return Home After 7 Years

Teagan Harbour

February 3, 2021

Boko Haram, a terrorist group located in northern Nigeria, took almost 300 girls from their school in 2014. Now, 7 years later, many return home and share their stories.

In April 2014, exactly 276 girls were taken from their dormitory school in Chibok, Nigeria during the night. The girls were frightened by the Boko Haram group and many eventually escaped after a seven year captivity. Some of the girls have come out to the public and shared their stories and how they escaped. Many report that they escaped by running through the woods by themselves, or being rescued by police in a raid. Lawal Zannah, a parent of a kidnapped child spoke out in January 2021 saying, "We heard that some of our girls have escaped from the forest, but we are yet to get the detail about their number,” when asked her thoughts the night some girls escaped. Another parent, Mala Madu Mutta, adds, “We were told they are currently with the security operatives. We are yet to know the numbers, but we are happy that some of them escaped”. Additionally, Rebbeca, a kidnapping survivor, said her captivity time was filled with starvation and eating grass to survive. With this, she also experienced occasional bombs, and at one point, Rebbeca was injured by the debris as a result of one. Fortunately, after Rebecca's interview in 2019, she returned to school. Rebbeca was asked by a reporter if she thinks her act of going back to school is courageous, and she comments, “Even what happened with me will not stop me doing what I already desire in my mind”. Another victim, Lesley Stahl, came forward about her hardships while hostage. She claims that the girls united together and became family during her three year period. In order to keep one another happy and away from illnesses, you had to keep everyone in one unit. For example, Grace, a victim who was injured when kidnapped, was filled with support by the other girls. Grace states, “They are taking care of me. They are fetching water. They are washing me, my clothes, and everything”. The girls believe that the positive attitudes and constant support kept them alive. Given these points, officials are still looking for other girls, yet they are happy that many have safely returned home. Bravely, The girls are continuing life normally despite the difficulty life threw at them.