YOUNG GIRLS EMPOWERMENT FORUM ON EARLY MARRIAGES, PREGNANCIES AND SEXUAL EDUCATION
· To enable participants acquire knowledge on the consequences of early marriages, early sexual activities and resultant early pregnancies
Song and dance prevailed TYSA sporting center as the organisation raised a red flag on early pregnancies, early marriages and school drop out
In a research outcome from the Empowering Rural Girls through Sports project being implemented by TYSA - on problems affecting rural girls, early pregnancies, marriages and school dropout which toped the list were found to be emerging at an alarming rate within four villages
It emerged from the forum that girls are missing vital information on Adolescent Sexual Reproductive Health, lack of protection from community and its institutions, violation of children Rights with impunity, and lack of safety nets for vulnerable girls. We don’t report cases of abuse, rape or pregnancies to the local chiefs because they are compromised a student
What needs to be done?
When asked how they thought these problems could be dealt with, they gave the following responses among many others:-
· In the case of harsh parents, the girls requested that time be found and a session organized to talk to their parents about their plight.
· As for poverty, it could be tackled by approaching organizations like TYSA and others who can either organise for bursaries or link them up with those who could help them get scholarships for education.
· We encouraged them that education is good and cited examples of people in the community who have made it in life and are successful after working hard in school.
· Being married off against their wishes and harassment by male teachers was quite a sad story. One girl stood up and said “When we report to the Chiefs, they are bribed into silencing us, our teachers are also bribed, the police are bribed, we have nowhere to report our cases.”
With scuh forums on the community, girls have unique opportunities to develop resilience.
Our project has become a beckon of hope for these girls who the community had neglected and condemned just because they had become mothers at the tender age of 15 years or below. ‘I did not know that to do with my life after I discovered that I was pregnant. I knew my life is now wasted and my dream shuttered. Thanks to TYSA for counseling me’. Ms Rehema Over the last two years, we have touched and transformed lives of over 200 teenage mothers, vulnerable and at risk girls by increasing their educational opportunities through school fees support, school placement, guiding and counseling, school uniform support and exposure for learning. Irene is one such girl whose dream was almost shuttered. When Irene did her primary school examinations, she got good grade to take her to secondary school. However, her family background is poor and she could not continue with her education. ‘I was so devastated by the fact that I had passed by primary examinations and could not proceed to secondary education. Today I am very happy as Iam in school and more so the Assistant Head Girl in my school’ Irene It’s March! Do you know what that means? It’s time for GlobalGiving’s first Bonus Day of the year! Starting at 12:00 am EDT on March 14th, GlobalGiving will be matching all donations made through www.globalgiving.org /2161 up to $1,000 per donor at 30%. Globalgiving has $50,000 available in matching funds. Matching will last until funds run out or until 11:59 pm EDT. So, we are encouraging you to make your donation early before the available match funds are over. TYSA depends on monthly donations from our GlobalGiving supporters. We count on your donations to help us transform lives of teenage mothers, their children and at risk girls. By donating on this matching day, you will help us pay examination fees for 25 girls who will be seating for the Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education this year. Each of these teenage mother students require US$ 50 to register for this very important National examination. If they do not register they will not be able to do the examination and their four years of study would go to waste.
16th February 2012, will remain a memorable day for Centrine Nafula . This is the day she finally carried her school bag in school uniform to Join Geta Secondary School. Centrine is the only girl in a family of six the rest are boys all who are being brought up by a single mother. She is 17 years old. More priorities have been directed towards the boys. Has not deterred her from pursuing her dream. She sat for her Kenya Certificate of Primary Education last year and scored 254 marks out of 500. Centrine has worked hard and hope to one day support her family.
Centrine is a talented footballer who has played at the primary school level to the provincials. Before Centrine joined TYSA, she was disappointed with life. She was feeling abandoned by the world. She was frustrated. I am very grateful to having joined TYSA which has natured my football talent and mentored me through my primary school.
Today Centrine is at her dream school where she hopes to develop her football talent and her education. The Principal of the school was confident that Centrine will contribute to the school prowess in football and education.
TYSA want to acknowledge that your continued support in school fees has enabled such girls like Centrine access education. There are 10 girls in Geta Secondary school whom you are supporting with school fees. Centrine is the 11th Girl. For the next four years, Centrine will depend on the kind donations to support her education.
We at TYSA are very grateful for the continued support that you have continually offered to the girls in the community. We asked them to define their best moments in 2011 and we report it as they said it:
Felister Akirapa- Am happy that Ojilo has helped me to know soccer and now am a good player.
Betty Caudencia-I didn't new that I could go to school but through this organization am happy that am in school.
Irene Amutabi-I thank God we are all ok with no injury. I have been in school without paying anything. Am also happy that I have gone to Nairobi
Rose Apiyo-Am happy that am back to school after a small mess but I promise not to do that again and I advice all to keep discipline of your self
Ann Asubila - I worked with people with no quarrel this year. I have done my KCPE, pray for me to get good marks
June Chepkoech- If it were not this organization I could have not been where I am. I have gone to Mombasa and trained as a referee, I can now confidently officiate any game.
We at TYSA management want to share our gratitude to what you have done to the girls. It is our desire that you will find this year another opportunity to support the girls. The project was featured in the GG Thank you Video, http://www.globalgiving.org/thank-you-2011/ , have a look and share it with your friends. We are proud of YOU!
As shared in our last report, we did organize the December Holiday Play sessions which was to mark the 10th anniversary of our organization. This brought all the programs, stakeholders and partners together. This was one of the most exciting activities that TYSA has organized in the recent past. It was an event that lasted for 10 days with all excitements. Over 1500 youth and community members participated in the celebrations.
As outlined; December Holiday Play and Mentorship Activities, junior mentorship Camp for under 14 years children including those with disability, Keeping My Dream Alive camp for vulnerable girls, and Play and learn Tournament for youth above 15 years and computer sessions were all organized. Junior mentorship camp brought together 110 children under 14 years from across the country. Teams came from Amani Kibera in Nairobi, ASTEP in Eldoret, SOET in Mt Elgon and the host community in Trans-nzoia County.
The children had assorted activities including life-skill sessions and health. They played 7 asi9de soccer games in a league format where each team played more than 4 games. The final league was for 11 aside where Amani Kibera Nairobi emerged triumph and carried the trophy. There was lots of fun as all children including those with disability participated in different way. Music and dance was in plenty.
One of the most memorable moments was the fact that the children who came from different ethnic communities in Kenya were hosted by families where TYSA works. This is the first time this is happening in the local community.
' I am so excited and happy that I stayed in a family who take care of me like one of their child. I will come again to visit them' Master Nyagah from Eldoret 120 girls from five organizations in Kenya that is Suba Lakers from Mbita, SEP from Oyugis, KYFA from Kisumu, Diocese of Lodwar from Turkana and TYSA.
The girls who were hosted by St. Teresa's Secondary School Sinyereri organized the training sessions and participated in the TYSA Girls We Can Soccer tournament. In the morning the girls held sessions in the school where they shared on keeping their Dreams Alive. In the afternoon, they participated in the soccer competitions which was eventually won by SEP Girls form Oyugis. The girls were so inspired during the camp. They shared freely amongst themselves. Mss Onyango Florence said from KYFA 'I would like to be a neurosurgeon so that I can help people with mental disabilities so that they can also be accepted in society where they are stigmatized' The computer classes were offered during this period and it is still ongoing for the community youth.
40 youth enrolled into the training session. They are learning basic skills to help them become more marketable in the market. The project will as form January 2012 include children under 14 years to gain the computer literacy skills at early age.
The December Holiday play brought in the senior youths aged 15 and above. 4 community teams participated in the play and learn tournament which was eventually won by Samba Boys. The youth learnt basic skills in starting business.
TYSA staff, children, youth, parents and stakeholders want to share their sincere gratitude to the donation that you made towards ensuring the celebration was a success.'On behalf of the parent committee and community council, want to thank you for your kind donation. It has made us proud in fulfilling our mandate. Your donation plus our donation ensured the children and youth get food, drink and medication during their stay here' Mr Waasare, Chairperson Community council. ' We are humbled by your kind donation and ask that you continue with this good gesture into 2012' Mss Atieno Oduor, a Girl leader and beneficiary 'We take this opportunity to wish you a successful 2012 in your endeavors. We hope you will remember and continue to make your donations to support us continue with school, computer, child protection and participation and football programs' Master Alex & Meshack, the Speaker of Youth Assembly and Junior assembly respectively
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