A quarter of the world’s population is made up of rural women! Forced early marriages, female genital mutilation, scarcity of essential resources and gender-based violence are a fraction of the challenge rural women face every day.
Thursday, July 25th was a celebration of intelligence, determination, empowerment and elevated potential for girls from hard to reach rural regions of West and East Pokot counties, Kenya. Proud relatives, board members, and special guests gathered on the pleasant July day to celebrate the graduation of 37 beneficiaries from the Global Give Back Circle’s HER Lab, in Morpus, West Pokot County, Kenya.
All those in attendance dressed in traditional regalia, its vibrant and bright colors reflecting the joy in faces of the elated graduates. Powerful speeches reminded the girls of their newly discovered potential and amazing possibilities ahead. Shirleen Kasmeri, a beneficiary of HER Lab, thanked the parents for joining the fight against FGM and Early Marriage. She spoke of how she has benefitted from being at HER Lab, highlighting her increased confidence and eloquence. Guest speaker Dinah Endoo, a former teacher at St Elizabeth Morpus, gave an inspiring speech. She encouraged the girls to be the change that their community needs. She emphasized that the girls are the pride of Pokot and that they should take advantage of the great opportunity they’ve received to go out and make a difference.
Over a post-graduation bonfire and dance, the graduates spoke about their plans for the future, powered by new-found self-confidence and skills. After 6 special months of digital literacy and life skills training, the girls shared their aspirations to be accepted to college and certificate courses. The graduates’ excitement to use their skills to impact the Pokot community was evident. All were glad for their improved income-generating capacity to support their families.
Global Give Back Circle’s HER Lab is an economic empowerment incubator for at-risk girls who have completed secondary school with a desire to obtain additional life, livelihood and leadership skills. Beneficiaries of HER Lab receive training in Digital Literacy and Coding, Hairdressing, Reproductive Health, Entrepreneurship, Beadwork, Agriculture and life skills workshops. HER Lab is designed to support girls rescued from FGM & Early Marriages to transition into economic independence and social empowerment.
Six months ago, 37 at-risk girls began their journey at Global Give Back Circle’s HER Lab in Morpus, West Pokot County, Kenya. Today, Global Give Back Circle and our partner organizations congratulate these once at-risk girls on their graduation. We look forward to seeing their successful transition to educated, economically independent women who will be leaders of change in their communities.