Educate girls and fight poverty in Kenya

 
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$46,805
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Members of our adult literacy program in Kenya
Members of our adult literacy program in Kenya

Thank you for your continued support and commitment to Women’s Global Education Project. We have an exciting program to share with you! As part of our scholarship program, we also provide complementary interventions such as tutoring, mentoring, health workshops and community outreach. These interventions are part of WGEP’s holistic approach to dismantling the barriers to girls’ access to and success in school. One of our community outreach programs is a women’s literacy program. Women join this program in order to gain reading and writing skills to help their daughters with their homework in addition to improving their own lot in life. With literacy skills, these mothers become mentors for their daughters, not only helping them with their homework, but also acting as good examples and demonstrating the power and importance of education.

An offshoot of our women’s literacy program is the “Merry-go-round” program, a micro finance group that allows the women to pool their money together and then, once a month, one of the women receives the entire pot. With this large sum of money, the woman is able to purchase things she would be unable to otherwise, such as the space for a new business or a plot of land. This program supports women by keeping them in control.

Since its start, the women in the Merry-go-round program have found ways to give back to their communities. For instance, they were able to buy three goats, multiple tables, dishes, lamps and litter tanks to retrieve rainwater. In these ways, the program has greatly benefited the women involved, their families and the wider community.

Thank you for helping to support Sisters to School and its complementary activities such as the Merry-go-round program!

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ARP participants on the final day of the program
ARP participants on the final day of the program

Our Alternative Rite of Passage program (ARP) is a week-long event that is held each December with our Kenyan partner organization, Tharaka Women’s Welfare Project (TWWP). Called “Circumcision with Words”, this program seeks to combat the practice of female genital mutilation (FGM) by addressing its cultural and social underpinnings on multiple levels.

In December 2014, 250 girls participated in our program! Since its initial implementation by WGEP in 2007, the ARP program has helped over 1,300 rural Kenyan girls and their families abandon the harmful and deeply rooted tradition of FGM.

Moreover, due to its great popularity and increasing demand, WGEP also included 58 boys in an ARP-like retreat program. Participants discussed safe male circumcision and publicly supported their sisters, cousins and female friends in standing up against FGM. This boys program was initiated in 2013 with 32 male participants.

Thank you to all of our donors and supporters who make this work possible!

We are excited to see how both our boys and girls programs expand and grow together!

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Kenyan Students in the Classroom
Kenyan Students in the Classroom

Thank you for supporting Women's Global Education Project and our Sisters to School program in Kenya! Your support helps WGEP provide critical scholarships to girls like Vivan in rural Kenya who otherwise lack the opportunity to go to school.

Here is a letter we received from Vivian in which she describes how the program has impacted her life: 

 I am a ninth grade and I am writing to you in acceptance of the aid that you give me. It is of great and wonderful assistance to me. It is enabling me to run through my education smoothly with no disturbances, as opposed to what was happening before. In the past, I was often sent out of school due to lack of funds, but with your support I was able to stay in school throughout the duration of the term. Thank you very much for that support.

I promise that I will utilise this opportunity effectively so that at the end of it all I will be a useful person in society.

Again, I am very grateful for the provision of personal effects such as sanitary pads so that I can sit in class comfortably during the time of my menses. I also enjoy you guidance and counselling very much.

Thank you very much and may you be blessed.

Yours faithfully,

Vivian

Ikawa High School

Thank you for partnering with us in this important, life-changing work! Your supports allows us to provide critcial interventions to girls like Vivian so that they may go to school and thrive. 

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WGEP graduate Fridah
WGEP graduate Fridah

Thank you for supporting Women's Global Education Project and our Sisters-to-School program in Kenya! Your support helps WGEP provide critical scholarships to girls like Fridah in rural Kenya who otherwise lack the opportunity to go to school. Thank you for partnering with us in this critical, life-changing work!

With your help, Fridah was able to graduate and is now pursuing a university degree in education. This is her story:

Because her mother passed away and her elderly father can no longer work, balancing school and helping her family has always been hard for Fridah. Through perseverance and sheer determination, she managed to pass her primary school exams, but she didn’t know if she would be able to keep her studies going or if her family would be able to send her to secondary school. In 2007, a WGEP scholarship allowed then 15-year-old Fridah to continue her studies at Kenya’s Mukothima Girls Secondary School. During the school holidays she often took manual work to help provide for her family. Now a graduate, Fridah hopes to become the principal of a secondary school so she can help other girls in need. She is currently pursuing a diploma in Education at Mt. Kenya University and is a mentor to younger girls in our program. Fridah says, ‘’My dream is to be self-reliant and assist my community.’’

WGEP works in 12 rural Kenyan villages providing programs for scholarships, tutoring, mentoring, adult literacy instruction, scholar family support, community awareness, and an alternative rite of passage program to combat genital cutting and early marriage.

Thank you for your support and for helping make the dreams of girls like Fridah into a reality!

Links:

WGEP Kenya partner Aniceta Kiriga
WGEP Kenya partner Aniceta Kiriga

This past May, Mothers' Day was celebrated in the United States, and it brought to our minds the vital impact maternal figures--mothers, grandmothers, sisters, aunts, teachers, and mentors--have on girls' education and on fighting global poverty. Without the support of these women, girls would not be able to go to school.

Your support of our program allowed us to create an innovative literacy training program for the mothers of our scholars so they can better support their daughters in school. These moms never had the chance to go to school themselves, and our program helps them gain basic literacy skills. They know what a gift education is, and they are committed to helping their daughters succeed in school. These women know what a gift motherhood is; they simply want to delay it a bit for their daughters. They know that each year of education that their daughters receive lowers their risk of dying in childbirth and reduces child mortality by 10 percent. They know that educated women have better access to the resources to care for their families, leading to lower rates of malnutrition and increased health outcomes overall.

Thank you for making these outcomes possible for our scholars and their moms!

We also want to share that our colleague Aniceta Kiriga, director of WGEP Kenya’s in-country partner Tharaka Women’s Welfare Project, was recently honored by the Kenyan government for her work with women and girls. Aniceta was one of the recipients of Kenya’s inaugural “Inspirational Women of the Year” awards, given by the Ministry of Gender to one woman from each of Kenya’s 47 counties. Aniceta was recognized for her work with WGEP in Tharaka, particularly her work to advance girls’ education and combat female genital mutilation. Thank you for partnering with us and with Aniceta in this work!

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Project Leader

Amy Maglio

Founder
Oak Park, IL United States

Where is this project located?