Expanding Opportunities has been working with girls in Kipsing Academy for a few years. The head teacher, Maina Kiboi, is a hardworking advocate for girl child education. He collaborates with local officials to rescue girls from FGM and Early Forced Marriage and place them in school.
This young girl, Teresa, was rescued by the chief and taken to Kipsing Academy to attend school. Maina sought a sponsor for her and Expanding Opportunities stepped in to assist. It is a joyous day when we can say, Maina, we have her covered. Thanks to your donations we are able to assist in these emergency situations and accept a new girl without hesitation.
School is closed for 2013. A recent trip to Kipsing Academy revealed at least 9 girls needing sponsorship for school for 2014. The dormitories at Kipsing Academy are full of pastoralist girls. As long as they can stay in school they are relatively safe from FGM and Early Forced Mariage. Both practices are illegal in Kenya and school is mandatory. But pastoralist families often carry on their traditional beliefs in spite of Kenyan law. These girls have been in school and are known by the headmaster. He follows them after the holiday to ensure their return to school. Mary, Ntsawa, Sarah, Winnie, Francesca, Dela, Jukuliza, Leengo and Eliza are all in need of sponsors for 2014. It is $125.00 to sponsor a girl in the dormitory. These girls have at least one parent and that parent makes a contribution as well. The Catholic Church sponsors the dormitory, the $125.00 is a contribution towards this subsidized fee and the cost of money transfer. Consider the gift of education for a pastoralist girl in Kenya during this holiday season.
Kipsing is a small rural village 78 km from Isiolo, Kenya. Many years ago the Catholic Church established a mission in this pastoralist community and built a school. Now, many years later, the school has been turned over to the government and the Catholic Church continues to manage the dormitories.
The Headteacher of Kipsing Academy is extremely active in the community. He works hard to ensure education for the girl child. Girls will run away from home to the school. He works with families to help them understand the importance of education for the girl child and the laws of Kenya which forbid FGM and Early Forced Marriage. The biggest barrier to his work is locating assistance to keep the girls in the dormitory while they attend school and during holidays when insistent fathers will marry off the girls. The Catholic Church subsidizes the dormitory but requests a family contribution.
Thanks to your assistance, Expanding Opportunities is assisting four girls to receive an education at Kipsing Academy. There are many more on the waiting list.
"Despite the condemnation of FGM, internationally often seen as a violation of a woman’s rights, the Pokot community have continued to embrace this ritual whose long-term physiological effects include septicaemia, genital malformation and even death."
This is an excerpt from an article published in the Standard Digital, June 6, 2013. The full article entitled,
"Going under the knife destroyed innocent young student’s life", is here, http://www.standardmedia.co.ke/?articleID=2000085346&story_title=going-under-the-knife-destroyed-innocent-young-student-s-life&pageNo=4Though outlawed long ago, the traditional tribes continue this ritual. Isolation, lack of education, love of culture all contribute to the persistence of these harmful practices. Leadership from within is rising. Women are receiving educaiton and returning to their tribes to lead and educate.Expanding Opportunities seeks to assist these leaders to eradicate these harmful practices with education and sensitivithy to culture.
MEET Elisa : Elisa is a new teen in her last year of primary school. Her mother died leaving her father with the four girls and three boys. It is the Samburu tradition to perform FGM and marry girls young which ends their formal education.
With the help of sponsors, the father will allow his girls to receive education before marriage. Elisa is in the top ten of her class. Because of her sponsor, for the last three years, Elisa has been able to stay in school. Her sponsor is forced to end her sponsorship at the end of 2013. We trust that a donor will step forward and continue her sponsorship.
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