INFORMATION IS POWER
Information is power. During our weekly meetings with rural women in vulnerable communities, we have heard the story of what they did when they were young, and usually the cause of the mistake was lack of information. Information is a crucial aspect in our daily to day decision making.
In Baringo county, most girls and women do not have any access to sexual education. Early marriage and early pregnancies are not something that used to happened in the past, since it is still happening nowadays to many women. We decided to start a Reproductive and Sexual Health Rights Club in a Secondary School where the situation was extremely alarming after the gap academic year caused by the pandemic.
When we went to visit this Secondary school to organise a special training for child girls with early pregnancies still in school, we got the numbers: 51 girls out of 180 enrolled in the school were pregnant.
We organised special sessions in prenatal and postnatal care for the pregnant child girls, but we also started a Club that is covering all the classes in the school, to reach every and each girl there.
During the Club sessions, the experience with the girls has been extremely amazing. The day we started the club with Form 3s, they wanted to leave the class because they were tired from a long meeting hold at the school that day. During the sessions, they became more and more open with us, motivated and confident. And when we reached what it had to be our last session with them, to start the Club sessions with the Form 1s, the girls even joined the new club because they did not want to stop attending the sessions.
We have been covering reproductive health, menstrual hygiene management, sexual education, sexual abuse, peer pressure and self-esteem. At the end of the sessions, we were pleased to see the way they were more aware of themselves, and their determination to push through the obstacles that life presents before them. In their own words, they were “empowered, informed and confident!”
We look forward seeing the same trust they have given us, to keep expanding in their inner selves.