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Family Digest Magazine

Habaswein is one of the most remote areas in Kenya.Other than being demographically and terrain challenged, it is an area where infibulation, the worst form of Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) is highly practiced. Members of this community in North Eastern Kenya cited that the chief reason, that FGM is practiced is because:It is a Somali tradition as well as an Islamic requirement (even though the majority of Muslims globally do not practice FGM)
It is on this basis,that the African Family Health organization together with the Population Council decided to celebrate women in a different way by organizing an anti FGM crusade in Habaswein with the aim of delinking Female genital Mutilation to Islamic religion.
On this day, we mobilized reputable Islam scholars like Sheikh Siyaat and Sheikh Ibrahim Lethome (Population Council Consultant) who recited different verses of the Quran and Hadith that prooved that the community's argument on practicing FGM is baseless and  unfounded.
Other invited guests were:Mr Gedi Abdi Dawey-DACEO , Mr Robert Sirya-World Vision,Mr Ramadhan Juma-AFH representative, Mrs Winnie Osula-Population Council Representative,Area member  of Parliament represented by Mr.Mohamed ismail, DC-Represented by DO1, Mr. Joel Kosgei

Kenya broadcasting Corporation (KBC)
covered the event and aired recorded interviews with local leaders.  Among those who were interviewed were:
  1. Ustadha Fatma Mohamed Dahir, a women elder
  2. Asst. Chief Amina Mohamet Sirat 
  3. Sheikh Ibrahim Lethome, Population Council Consultant
  4. DO1, Mr. Joel Kosgei, in place of the District Commissioner 
Community members indicated that they were ready to listen to religious scholars and would be
prepared to stop any practices that are not in line with Islamic teachings.

    In the effort of bridging the gap between the boy and girl child, World Vision built a boarding school  in the area,but it  is such a pity that the facility is largely under utilized since parents are not sending  their girls to that school! unfortunately in the region,boys are given preference and sent to school at the expense of the girl child! The parents however were encouraged to take deliberate efforts to rescue the situation.

    All is not lost in this part of North Eastern Kenya.With the help of Maendeleo ya Wanawake Women Organization, the women have come up with an  income generating project, whereby they create energy saving charcoal burners and other artefacts.The biggest challenge they face though is to find market for their products.

    Tremendous leadership and communication skills being exhibited by the great women of Habaswein during the workshop.

    At the end of  the day,as we left this small underutilized town,We couldn't help but marvel at the rich potential in such a  remote area.It is very true what they usually say,"There is a drop of greatness in every man". All these women need is a platform of training and exposure.If you have any ideas or support on how to go along with this cause.Please post a comment or visit our website http://www.africanfamilyhealth.org 
    Watch this space for more news and updates.

    To help save women's lives today;
    visit :http://www.africanfamilyhealth.org/
    The African family Health Organization partnering
    with other key individuals and organizations, facilitated
    a 16 days global campaign against gender based violence
    in Runyenjes. The series of events including a 4 days
    medical camp, ran from 25th November to10th December.

    In the four medical camps women received free HIV testing,
    Cervical and Breast cancer screening.500 women were found
    terminally ill and were not aware. This was followed by
    intense counseling sessions to help these mothers and daughters
    to take it a day at a time.
    The women were also informed on the support systems around
    for more medical care. AFH would love to go an extra mile and
    aid their medication and therapy; By so doing, these women will
    receive proper medical care at a subsidized fee or even free.

    We salute all the service providers who were dedicated to
    serve their community, and all our partners who made this
    day a success.

    National leaders addressing the women.

    For more information or to support this cause, please visit;

    There was also a candle light vigil to commemorate all the unsung
    heroes who have lost their lives or are survivors of Gender Based Violence.
    Thank you all for your continued support...
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