Jessie Jaggernath, 31, a mother of six, yesterday appealed to Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar to save her children from a life of continued hardship.
Jaggernath, a CEPEP employee, came to Express House yesterday to tell her sad life's story with the hope that someone in authority could help her.
With nowhere to live, seven months ago, Jaggernath and her children moved into a Housing Development Corporation (HDC) home at Oropune Gardens, 4th Avenue building, apartment 6K.
Her children are Emmanuel, 15, Justin, 14, Sarah, 11, Dinesh, 2, and baby twins Sita and Gita, seven months.
Jaggernath said her first two children were fathered by a man who was a drug dealer and who was imprisoned. Her second two children were fathered by a man who was abusive, forcing her to flee and the father of her twin girls left because his family did not approve of her race.
She said she stayed with a friend in the same HDC site and when it was discovered that the apartment was empty, she moved in with her children out of desperation.
The HDC apartment has no electricity or running water. Jaggernath and her six children sleep on the floor on a mattress.
"I want the Prime Minister to know that I am a single mother and I just want a place for my children. If it was me alone I don't care but my children are innocent," said an emotional Jaggernath yesterday in tears.
She said HDC officials told her yesterday that she and her children must vacate the premises immediately as they were occupying the place illegally.
She was given until Monday to move after she pleaded for the sake of her children.
Jaggernath said she went for help on numerous occasions to the Social Development Ministry as well as HDC but to no avail.
"I cannot even get a food card because I do not have a permanent address," she lamented.
She said she received vouchers for food and pampers from Social Welfare.
Jaggernath said she had a hard life growing up, "I don't even know who my mother is, I have brothers and sisters but everybody went their own way."
Jaggernath said her main worry is for her children because come Monday she does not know what will happen.
The Express told Minister of the People Dr Glenn Ramadharsingh of Jaggernath's plight yesterday following the post-Cabinet press conference.
He promised to assist her saying if she is able to find a place to rent for $2,000 a month, there is a grant at the Ministry that will pay this for up to three months.
Ramadharsingh said he and Housing Minister Dr Roodal Moonilal only yesterday discussed the way forward in terms of dealing with persons who occupy HDC houses illegally.