Gender discrimination is recognized by Kenya’s government and other organizations as the number one cause of persistent poverty among the Maasai, causing a higher than average rate of illiteracy, as well as preventing economic development in the area. Government agency reports also attribute illiteracy among women as the primary cause of malnutrition and poor health in the area.
The Voices of Hope Project seeks to over-come this discrimination by providing education to young Maasai girls/women who will take on leadership roles in their communities to bring about positive change and fight against gender discrimination and violent practices that destroy the hopes and dreams of girsl/women.
Finding and collecting water is a major problem in the Kajiado district. A Maasai woman may walk five, ten or even twenty miles a day to collect water on her back for her family. It can take 10 hrs for a single trip.Voices of Hope has drilled a borehole on property that has been donated to the project with the goal of serving 350 families in the nearby villages and also one elementary school with 233 students. We currently have a small garden on the property and hope to install an irrigation system so we are able to expand the garden, providing food to our students and those in need in the community.
We are currently striving to raise funds to build a safe house on the property that will hold at least 40 young women. We plan tohave a small computer center for short-term training, a library, study area, and a house mother’s living quarters within the building. The purpose of this safehome/learning center is to provide safety and short-term training to post-high school age girls in danger of FGM and forced marriages.