“'Something happened',” Amina Evangelista Swanepoel pauses. “It was always how they explained their pregnancy: ‘My parents were away and my boyfriend came over and something happened and now I’m pregnant’.”
Amina is talking about the female students of her mother, Susan Evangelista, and the reasons they gave her for dropping out of school.
It alarmed Susan so much that sometime in 2009, she called on her daughter Amina, who was then an unhappy consultant in a non-profit management firm in the US, to come home and together, they put up Roots of Health.
Roots of Health is a non-profit organization based in Puerto Princesa, Palawan that reaches out to women in marginalized communities to educate them on reproductive health and to give them access to reproductive healthcare.