Youth Anti FGM Network Kenya (YANK) launches new chapter in Samburu County

Samburu Youth dance during YANK Samburu County chapter launch

By  Collins Orono

Youth Anti FGM Network Kenya has launched a new chapter in Samburu County in a bid to amplify the voices of young people in ending Female Genital Mutilation in Kenya

Gender Chief Administrative Secretary Prof. Linah Jebii  Kilimo applauded youths for the move urging them to expect rebellion from the communities.

 “Today we are putting you on the fire so that you can come out as gold, “The fire that we are putting you into is the community because it’s going to be tough there” Said CAS Jebii Kilimo

From Left: Anti FGM Board chair Agnes Pareiyo, Gender CAS Linah Jebii Kilimo and Samburu County deputy governor Julius Leseeto

She also highlighted that the current campaigns against FGM were easy compared to their time saying that currently youths have the blessings of both the president and the law as well as social media which is also immensely contributing in the fight against FGM unlike the past times. She also urged the youth to share stories that abandoning harmful cultural practices is possible.

“You are the people to do the cost busting because you are tech savvy, you can go back and tell our Communities what you are doing isn’t right” She noted.

Samburu is the fourth network to be launched after West pokot, Narok and Isiolo

“This is a network of Young activists and youth led CBOs and NGO’s, today we are here in Samburu to launch the Samburu Youth Anti FGM NetworkSaid Macharia Karanja National Co-ordinator Youth Anti FGM Network (YANK)

Macharia Karanja National Co-ordinator Youth Anti FGM Network (YANK)

Migori based youth Anti FGM Activist Vincent Mwita also expressed his gratitude joining his Samburu colleagues in the launch.

 “As the youth of the Anti FGM Network (YANK) we are here in Samburu to build a network and a movement of young people, we’ve been saying that we want to end FGM, but it’s a collective responsibility, we need the men, we need the women, the girls themselves and the youth”, “We need to ensure that it’s a leave no one behind”.  Said Mr. Mwita

“This is to tell the Samburu chapter that we want you to become the voice, pass the message and take charge. It’s not about us here but about everyone here”. He added

SUSA President and a Student at Catholic University of East Africa Ms. Sarafina challenged her colleagues to cause change in the Samburu community. She stated that she was inspired to bring change and take the challenge because youths are the ones who can bring change to the communities.

Newly elected Samburu chapter focal person representing the County at the local level Ms. Naisiaye promised to engage girls and empower them to speak up against FGM.

“The reason why I never underwent FGM was because I had a voice in my family I told them that I don’t want to be cut and I was not cut. When you speak in your family and you are doing the right things your parents will listen to you, I would like to engage the young girls first, you have a right to say no to anything that is harmful to your life and that thing that will torture your psychology”. Said Naisiaye

Grassroots GFM Activists dance during YANK Samburu County launch

The launch took place a head of the President’s visit in the County for the Samburu elders declaration event to end FGM and child marriage which took place on Friday.

Present was gender CAS Linah Jebii Kilimo, Samburu County deputy governor Julius Leseeto, Anti FGM Board chair Agnes Pareiyo, CEO Bernadette Resian Loloju, National Youth Council CEO Roy Sasaka and representatives of Amref, UNFPA, World Vision, and UNICEF

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