By Sayydah Garrett, Founder/President, PCF.
Girls' Empowerment Workshop - Lorubae Primary School, Archer's Post, Samburu County, Kenya.
We’re delighted to announce that the August, 2015 Girls’ Empowerment Workshop was a huge success!
We’re certain the girls’ hands were quite tired at the end of the three-day workshop.
They wrote and wrote and wrote so many notes.
It was a pleasure to see because we knew they were eager to share everything they learned with their peers, families, teachers and anybody who is willing to listen.
One of the reasons for the workshop’s success is that we covered more topics than ever before. The classes were very interactive.
Fifty girls, ages 12-17, were chosen from five different primary and secondary schools in Samburu County to attend the workshop.
It was a delightful, happy and smart group of girls who listened attentively to the facilitators and took many notes.
The curriculum included the following subjects:
- Self-awareness & Self-Esteem – Anastacia Leparporit
- Teen Pregnancy & Early Marriage – Elizabeth Lemoyog
- Gender Equality & Human Rights – Lekermui Josephat
- Sexual Reproductive Health & FGM/C and its effects – Elizabeth Lemoyog
- Beading of Young Girls – Lekermui Josephat
- Child Rights & Child Labour – George Guyo
- HIV/AIDS & Sexual Transmitted Diseases – Ali Njoroge
- Sex Education, Love & Relationships – Elizabeth Lemoyog
- Importance of Formal Education – Elizabeth Lemoyog, George Guyo
- Moringa Tree Planting – Sayydah Garrett
- Save the Elephants Presentation – Daud and Jerenimo
We encouraged the girls to always ask questions and contribute their ideas and opinions. We also wanted to make sure they understood every lesson.
Our youngest participant was 12 years old, and although it seemed at times she would fall behind during the fast-paced lessons, she kept up!
We’re so proud of Freda, and every single girl who attended. This was their school holiday and they chose to “go to school,” and for that, we offer our respect.
FGM, Child Marriage, Healthy Eating, and More...
Each lesson was chock full of vital, life-saving information. The mission of Pastoralist Child Foundation is to eradicate Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting (FGM/C) and forced early marriage. However, other critical issues are closely linked to our work and it’s absolutely necessary to address them.
We added two classes: planting Moringa seeds and a Save the Elephants presentation. The Moringa leaf is a highly nutritious food and the tree is easy to grow. Thanks to a donation of hundreds of seeds and instructional booklets from our friends at HOW Global, the girls planted the seeds in used water bottles and took them home to care for and watch grow into trees.
The presentation by Save the Elephants educators, Daud and Jerenimo, was excellent. They showed a documentary film about the plight of the elephants due to poaching for ivory tusks, and the importance of elephant conservation. We want our girls to care about their beautiful African wildlife and environment.
After serving as a facilitator for four of our workshops, Anastacia Leporporit reports encouraging feedback from girls who attended:
“Girls are telling us that they’re happy they attended our workshops. They now know that when they see a girl or woman who is experiencing pain during their periods or childbirth, it’s very likely due to the effects of FGM.
Girls are more self-confident as well and are not afraid to discuss “taboo” subjects such as FGM and early marriage – two factors that prevent many girls from completing primary school.
They are telling their parents/guardians that formal education is very important and are seeking their support to finish school.”
Makaki is a PCF sponsored student. She’s in grade 9 (Form 1) and a positive role model.
She’s a straight “A” student and ranks #2 in her class of 138!
Makaki wants to be a doctor.
Improving the Status of Girls Benefits Communities
Our next workshop will be in December 2015. We’re honored to serve the Samburu community where, for the most part, people are open-minded and welcoming. As difficult as it may be for some, they see the need for change in order to improve the status of girls which, ultimately, improves their communities.
The conversation is alive…girls are getting the support they need…they’re more optimistic and confident about their futures. Pastoralist Child Foundation will keep striving to make a positive difference.
We have renewed hope and commitment after every workshop! Our next workshop is in December, 2015.
It will be followed by an Alternative Rite of Passage celebration for 200 girls! Let us know if you’d like to be part of the festivities!! See you there!!
- Samuel Siriria Leadismo
- Anastacia Leparporit
- Elizabeth Lemoyog
- Sayydah Garrett
- Ali Njoroge
- Lekermui Josephat
- George Guyo