In December 2011, we held another successful Health and Leadership Camp for 65 girls aged 13 and 14. The participants were a mix of KCE students and girls from the surrounding community. Each Kakenya Center student was paired with a girl from another school for the duration of the camp to encourage the participants to make new friends. Each day had a different theme, such as Health and Hygiene or Leadership and Life Skills. On the Health and Hygiene day, our knowledgeable trainers gave the girls information on health issues ranging from how to properly wash their hands to facts about sexually transmitted diseases. The girls also learned about the harmful effects of female genital cutting -- from a trainer who is also Maasai. On the Leadership and Life Skills day, they participated in group games and activities, discussed qualities of a good leader, and were educated about their rights by the district children’s rights officer.
Evenings were filled with fun activities such as story-telling by local grandmothers, a movie night, and a talent show. While at the beginning of the week many of the girls were timid and afraid to speak up, by the end of the camp almost every girl was eager to answer the trainers’ questions and to participate. During dinner time on the final night, all the girls sat together and spoke and laughed energetically - an amazing sight to see after the dinner on the first day where girls from different schools sat far apart and whispered quietly amongst themselves. By the end of the week, everyone had made new friends and acquired lots of new knowledge. The girls did not want to go home when the camp was over!
Altogether in 2011, our Health and Leadership camps reached over 120 girls. In 2012, we hope to increase this number to 200. We want to extend our heartfelt thanks to all of you who have supported our project and our vision to empower young Maasai girls with knowledge and leadership skills! Together, we are changing the lives of girls in Enoosaen.
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