Friday, December 14, 2012


10-13TH DECEMBER 2012
Day 1- 10/12/12   Facilitated by Jayoung Naphtalie Margaret
Ja Young providing guidance
Nine  girls reported for the workshop, which is limited to girls who have completed school and are hoping to work for the Girl Power Clubs next year, eight of whom brought with them their ‘’letter of motivation’’  which was required of them upon reporting.
Of all attendance;
> 1 was from Malezi Primary, Noela Akinyi,
>4 from Nazarene Primary,; Dorcas,  Akinyi, Arnnette Anyango, Sally Akinyi, Dinah Osebe
>3 from Karen ‘’C’’ Secondary ; Vellectar Ndevani, Petronila Mutheu and Philemona Gathoni
> 1 from St. Aloysius  Bella Achieng’
We adapted ‘’The River Of Life’’ Story telling format where the girls told and shared their stories…shocking and very personal. From their sharing
Ø  At 8 years old one of them underwent FGM . She is now 14 years. The rite was done secretly and she had to be taken to stay alone at a ‘’customs hut’’ and have no contact with anyone for a week only her aunt allowed to visit her and bring food. She was required not to cry, complain or talk about it outside their community. On the last day, she was required to bath at the river before sun rise, shave her head clean and is then considered clean to return to her community.  There after came to Nairobi and school continued and so did life! Some girls  she said, they suffer terribly and nothing can be is secret and no one talks about it but you must go through it.
Ø  At 12years another girl in the group, was  raped. Until this workshop she never has spoken publicly or shared about it..she wanted to share because she felt it might help another girl and no one will tell on her. One time she visits the country side for 2 weeks with her aunt who at some point feels like she needed to relieve herself at a nearby bush while they walked to the village early evening. She is left on the pathway and a man that claimed to be a police man questions her as to why she is alone at that hour and that he has power over her and could arrest her…getting scared, he grabs her to the bush, rapes her  and quickly disappears threatening her to even try to act and never to walk alone. Her aunt who thinks she has walked ahead finds her in pain, she explains and is taken to hospital . Lucky no infections or any serious physical injury. She instructs her to shut up as it is going to be a shame and act normal. On return to Nairobi she  sees the man, as they approached he quickly turned to disappear and she points him out to her aunt who tells her there is nothing to be done now she wasn’t hurt, Be a good girl and shut up. Never told the mother or anyone else..the river of life…she wrote the things that have brought her here and she shared for the first time. She cannot tell her mother because …’’if I tell her I  know how she will think..she might not understand or believe me..i needed help and I needed to talk about it I cannot do it with her and so I shared here,….i feel better now.’’
Ø  One other girl almost fell into similar trap ..had been cheated by a neighbour who always played the good one to send her to the shop and make her bring the item into his house and she remembered being told that that is a compromising situation and having learnt to say NO from Girl Power discussions in their club she figured she should leave the things at his door and run as he had previously been showing unusual interest in her and praising her more than usual.
Ø  The rest had more or less common stories…struggle through life, being raised by single parents, some passed on along the way others born and do not know who their father is…the need to belong and the reality that one has to live with it. Struggle through  school and do their best.
This stories, the first two especially were most was able to bring out how powerful creative story telling methods can be such as ‘’the river of life’’.
The rest of day flowed as shown in the programme.

Day 2- 11/12/12   Facilitated by Jayoung Naphtalie Margaret
As in the programme, the girls did have some time to play in the football pitch and later identify aspects of team work and leadership from the game as well as ‘’know yourself task’’ with Hazel May for 15 minutes followed by a movie session.
The movie we decided on ‘’Freedom Writers’’  is  based on  true story of Erin Gruwel who began her teaching task in a very difficult environment. Back in 1994.  She had to make  room 203 her home, the students that hated her more than each other because she is white and they know what whites can do..make them her friends and students.  A group of teenagers that are racist, belong to gangs, carry automatic weapons and believed to be way below average thinkers…she brings a huge transformation at huge risks….and finally they wrote  ‘’freedom writers diaries’’ as a class in 1997.
With questionnaires that were developed with the help of Evelyne Guchura, the girls were able to;
Ø  Identify leadership qualities in Ms. Gruwel
Ø  Identify challenges in Leadership
Ø  Indentify the need for innovation and creativity
Ø  Understand leadership is a risk  that requires determination, consistency, sacrifice, time, a heart, courage, authority, knowledge, fairness, self- reliance, optimism, wisdom, passion in what one does, understanding and intelligence, innovation
Ø  Point out their favourite characters and why
Ø  Why the story is a success
Ø  The role of the rest of team players..colleagues, group members
Ø  Indentify lessons they can apply it their own lives

Day 3- 12/12/12   Facilitated by Evelyne Guchura
The girls were taken through communication and communication skills, how to present themselves, what language to use and where, why communicate.
They also had time to play frees bees  and be taken through career paths where Evelyne was able to share her story with them.
This day was entirely taken by Evelyne as the main facilitator and the girls that attended reported to have enjoyed it.
Evelyne (right) preparing for the workshop
Day 4- 13/12/12   Facilitated by Jayoung Naphtalie Margaret
As shown in the programme, the girls opened the day with a questionnaire where they had to write what they thought a community meant, challenges in their own, what solutions they intended to offer.
They all agreed that a community is a group of people in a society that stay together in a particular geographical location, have similar rituals and believes and sometimes same taboos and ancestral descent. However we also looked into a town setting where some of the points raised will not apply for example a school for instance not all come from the same descent but the common thing would be
Ø  Composed of people
Ø  In a geographical area
Ø  Live together
Ø  Similar life styles
Ø  Understand each other
Ø  Are bound by rules that might or not be common, both written and unwritten…we looked at different examples, settings and situations
A discussion group
They pointed out some challenges being poverty, lack of unity, crime, cultural activities, religion, communication barrier government bureaucracy, the media, age, drug abuse ,and change. We discussed these challenges at length each with examples from our own ‘communities’’ and places we have been to. We all agreed that most of the problems could be solved by personal commitment for changing the attitudes of youth.
We also discussed the second part which is community outreach. Having known what a community is and its challenges and the intended ‘’solutions’’ we had to challenge ourselves as leaders who are going to be the agents of change in the communities sometimes very much unfamiliar to our own bringing up the issue of culture shock , how to deal with it while remembering to respect community culture while seeking dialogue and to bring a change. We agreed that we must have know our surroundings well enough and be flexible enough to adapt without necessarily losing ourselves and our intended purpose.
We ended the session with a ‘’tour’’ around Sadili after which they all wrote reports in form of reviews on Trip Advisor.

Issued raised
Ø  When will they hear from us again?
Ø  Will they get a certificate from the workshop and when do they come for them?
Ø  Most of the things are taught are what they have always been. However we explained that the dimension in which they are receiving  the lessons is not from the student view but rather the leaders/volunteer’s view who will later train others from a student view. The four that attended the last day each received Girl Power note books  which they were happy about but still mentioned they will be waiting for certificates.

Out of all attendants we only had two consistent girls Vellectar Ndevani and Petronila Mutheu , both from Karen ‘’C’’. We have been looking at both over the week after the workshop, if we are to pick one person from the group we had settled on Vellectar. Her courage, enthusiasm , she is more ‘’contained’’, is more bold  and is less likely that type that would quite when anything seems to be tough. She seems more open and able to take on challenges.  We also saw one girl Bella, from St. Aloysius, unfortunately she wasn’t able to come for all days we therefore cannot make any conclusion about whether she can work for Girl Power next term, as she is also new and also communicated previously through FaceBook.

Ø  There had not been any serious challenges except the inconsistency of a few participants  which showed lack of seriousness on their part which also made it easier to eliminate in the selection process.
Ø  Most participants at beginning had just completed primary school and the challenge becomes how to make a follow up on them when they join high school as they seem a promising group of girls.
Ø  The girls had hoped to get certificates at the end unfortunately, they were not ready by the time we were done as shops were off for Christmas break. The certificates will be granted in January 2013, when print shops are open.

Report Compiled by,
Jayoung Naphtalie Margaret,
Project Assistant,
Girl Power Clubs Africa