A women’s shelter shared the touching way they were able to help a teenage girl from going through an unimaginable experience. In a TikTok video, Asiyah Women’s Center, located in New York City and New Jersey, shared the amazing way that they were able to help a 17-year-old girl who had recently escaped an abusive and frightening situation.
The women’s shelter threw a Barbie-themed party for the teenage girl after she was rescued from being married off.
Asiyah Women’s Center, a women’s emergency center that focuses on providing temporary housing for victims of domestic violence and women facing eviction, and/or homelessness, shared in a video one of the “worst calls” they had ever gotten.
“In April (2023, the Asiyah Women’s Center received one of the worst calls we’ve ever received from a 17-year-old girl,” the shelter, which offers help and safety for Arab, Middle-Eastern, Muslim, South Asian, and/or the Black, Indigenous, People of Color (BIPOC) population, wrote in overlay text in their video.
The center was told by the teenage girl that she was in danger and was being forced by her parents to travel to a different country and enter an arranged marriage with a 40-year-old man. The teenage girl told the shelter that she had no desire to be married and that she wanted to go to college instead and become a doctor.
“She felt like her girlhood and dreams were being robbed,” they continued. The women’s center immediately launched into action to rescue the teenage girl from her parents and the fate of being in a forced marriage. “While her parents loaded the car with bags to take her to the airport, we waited for her to meet us at a secure location nearby to take her to our shelter.”
The teenage girl was able to make it out of her situation safely, and now, three months later, the women’s center decided to surprise her with something special after she managed to keep her dreams alive and get accepted into a prestigious university.
“We are throwing her a surprise Barbie-themed party,” they announced, showing all of the decorations and gifts they had gotten for her, along with the number of women helping put the party together. “We also want to make sure she has everything she needs for college this fall. We are also raising funds for her to go to college and accomplish her dreams of becoming a doctor.”
The women’s center shared a GoFundMe campaign, where all the funds collected will go toward helping the 17-year-old girl be able to afford all of the supplies and other necessities that she will need for college.
The women’s shelter providing a community full of love and support for this teenage girl highlights the importance of togetherness.
According to Unicef, more than 650 million women alive today are married as children, and every year, at least 12 million girls are married before they reach the age of 18. Many of these young girls who are forced into arranged marriages are also placed at high risk of experiencing domestic violence at the hands of their much older partners.
It’s an incredible feat that the Asiyah Women’s Center was able to save this 17-year-old from a devastating fate and provide her with a community of love after being rescued from her own parents. It’s equally as important for abuse survivors and women who have gone through unimaginable trauma to receive empowerment and validation.
Sharing their stories and experiences with others who understand what they’ve been through helps survivors realize that they are not alone, that their feelings are valid, and that their experiences are not their fault.
In the comments section, many people shared the same sentiment and expressed gratitude that the teenage girl was given a chance to make her own path.
“Seeing the ’18’ candles on the cake broke my heart. Too young to be dealing with issues like that. Congratulations to this bright young woman!” one TikTok user wrote.