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Friday, 15 July 2016 00:00

Samburu anti Beading Project Campaign

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Greetings from the Coexist Initiative in Nairobi Kenya. Please allow us to share with you a story about a practice that is destroying the lives of thousands of Samburu girls in northern Kenya. Beads are a part and parcel of Samburu community life for generations.  The practice is normally initiated by parents around puberty, but possibly earlier but exploited by Morans (warriors) who use the practice to cause numerous vulnerabilities to girls as young as ten.

Beading allows a Moran (warrior) to buy a girl he fancies from his clan, basically a family member and places beads on her neck. This acts as a sign of ‘engagement’. He is allowed to have sex with her. However, he cannot marry her, and they must not have a child. When the girl gets pregnant, her mother and fellow clan women conduct crude abortions. The women press the girl’s abdomen with their elbows until the foetus dies. The young mothers to be almost always die, or they get life threatening complications like excessive bleeding, sepsis, and fistula. Others never conceive again. When they carry the pregnancy to term and give birth, the child is killed using a concoction of tobacco and dangerous herbs.

Summary
The archaic cultural practice of beading among the Samburu remains one of the most dreadful exercises that recurrently exposes girls as young as ten to death and life threatening complications including excessive bleeding, sepsis, fistula, segregation and expulsion from society. We propose to increase knowledge and understanding around the dangers of the beading by targeting and working with Moran’s, men, women, boys and communities in Samburu County

What is the issue, problem, or challenge?

Beading allows a Moran to buy a girl he fancies from his clan, basically a family member and places beads on her neck. This acts as a sign of 'engagement'. He is allowed to have sex with her. However, he cannot marry her, and they must not have a child. When the girl gets pregnant, her mother and fellow clan women conduct crude abortions. The women press the girl's abdomen with their elbows until the foetus dies. Girls get life threatening complications like excessive bleeding, sepsis, and fistula. The practice leads to unwanted pregnancies, causes girls to drop out of school, enhances the transmission of STDs including HIV, escalates maternal deaths and sustains the vicious circle of poverty and want in the community.

Download the Samburu Beads of Death Report here

How will this project solve this problem?

  • Promotegirls school enrolment and retention as one of the main deterrents of early and forced marriage.
  • In order to determine on attitudes and perceptions on beading in the target communities, we shall conduct ten focus group discussions within the target locations.
  • Community outreach and awareness-raising. To design and develop a poster that will be used to raise awareness about beading and its implications.
  • Encourage to artistically express and illustrate their fears, attitudes, ideas, experiences and encounters with special regards to prevention and eradication.
  • Education-entertainment: Use songs, art, recitations, illustrations, poems and cartoons to raise awareness and cause behaviour change about beading in the community.
  • Target and engage and local and civil leadership in Samburu against beading and other harmful traditions and cultures directed at girls and women

What your help will do

1.      $20 will help produce 50 posters in the local language

2.      $30 will help produce 100 handbills in local languages

3.      $40 will help host a focus group discussion with 10 Moran’s

4.      $50 will help a local group come with a song or dance against beading

5.      $100 will help print 50 T-shirts with imprints against the vice

6.      $200 will help organize a community outdoor event against the practice

We are counting on your support

Potential Long Term Impact

  • % involvement of Morans in anti-beading activities.
  •  % increased level of community awareness about the negative social and health consequences of beading
  • Results of the FGDs tabulated and published.
  • No. of entries submitted as a result of the speak out contest
  • A standard anti- Beading poster designed and distributed

 

Read 4413 times Last modified on Friday, 19 August 2016 07:52

Awards Won by Coexist Initiative

  1.   Global Inter-Cultural Innovation Award - 2016 in Baku (Azerbaijan)

  2.  Avon Global Communications Award  - 2015 in USA

  3. The European / Global Intecultural Achivement Award - 2014 in Vienna

  4. Africans International Achievers Award - 2013  in London

  5. UNHCR recognition for best Practice 2015/2016

  6. Kenyatta University shield of honour 2015

  7. Commonwealth Anchor resource organization 2015

  8.  The African union technical committee member

 

 

 

 

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