The Lasting Impact of Education
Meet Napir — an English and Science teacher at Endamaghai Primary School, and a supervisor of our Keeping Girls in School project.
Keeping Girls in School exists to educate girls and their families on the importance of education for girls. The project provides guiding and counselling sessions on performance improvement, distribution of sanitary towels and psychosocial support to build self confidence. It also raises awareness of the health risks of Female Genital Cutting (FGC), a cultural practice that continues in many of the communities we work with in East Africa, in particular in the Maasai tribes.
Napir is a Maasai girl and her tribe continues to perform FGC on their girls. When she was at primary school, she was facing a similar fate until one day a non-Maasai female teacher spoke to her about the risks of FGC; she learned that FGC increased complications in pregnancy, often leading to severe loss of blood and death. With this information, Napir made the brave decision to refuse FGC.
Every holy day, which is when FGC is typically performed, Napir would escape from her family and hide. Her mother was furious with her, as she worried that if Napir didn’t go ahead with FGC, it would mean that she would never marry or have a child. But Napir stood her ground. As the eldest of her siblings, this meant that she was also protecting 9 other girls, as her Maasai tribe must perform FGC on a family in descending age order.
Now, Napir is committed to helping other women and girls make informed decisions and stand up against this cultural practice. She proudly participates in education forums with families and runs reflection sessions with So They Can’s Champion Mothers to help get the message out to the wider community.
Napir knows that knowledge is power and she is passionate about sharing that knowledge so that she can protect more girls from the risks of FGC.
Keeping Girls in School is generously funded by So They Can’s community of donors. As always, we are so grateful for your support.