Education sets women free

CHRISTINE TERINA
Posted March 8, 2021 from Kenya

The Sun is rising from the east as I prepare to go graze my mother's goats in lulu back in my younger days. I was the only girl in the village dressed differently because I was the only school going girl in my village 1980s. Many times the forest was not safe for girls because of  retrogressive culture and because of wildlife. Many times the sun was hitting so hard and with an empty stomach the family espected me to bring goats home safe and well fed or I might not get any pocket money for school. Hunger was a familiar friend and companion to me. Today am puzzled by where I got the strength to walk 60 kilometers every school opening and closing day from and to the village. My search for freedom and a safe space for women was so fresh in my mind every morning. 

After heading to New York and getting into an eoraplane for the first time, drilling a borehole in my village, introduced the first clean water to our village school and the Community, campaigned to end Female Genital Mutilation, I saw a dream come true. A dream of a rejected stone becoming the main stone for a safe spot for women in my village. I remembered the elders called for a meeting to bless me after drinking clean water the first time. It must have tested like heaven to them. 

Education is a game changer and I call upon members of our African continent to embrace education. Education frees women and children from danger and poverty. 

When you have been educated you know where to step and where not to step, you know how to make your voice count in a patriarchal system and when to save your head from the enemies of women's development. 

Education helps women to understand how to be healthy and create a healthy environment for their children. Education is a life changing tool. 

I boldly campaigned on social media in Community forums to end gender based violence as well as retrogressive culture in my Community. Many insulted and violated my freedom of speech but I never gave up. Today women and girls in my Community can boldly speak and campaign against gender based violence and FGM. Change can start from anyone. Remember being a change maker requires you to have a big and strong heart. Be psychologically prepared to have shock absorbers and pain absorbers. Be prepared to cross valleys, climb mountains, drawn in waters and leave foot steps of strength and success for other women to follow toward a safe world. 

Women and girls from pastoralist communities must step out of the grazing land and climb the hills of  education and development for a  better tomorrow. Every child must be a holder of a form of education that enables them access gender equality and development. 

We must create this change we want to see. Like gold,we must be prepared to be burnt and shaped by challenges we face in this process of creating a better world to allow current and future women and children to walk the path of change without much struggle. 

Comments 19

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Nini Mappo
Mar 08
Mar 08

Dear Christine,
Congratulations on your profound first post! I see that you have been in the hood for a while. You paint such a powerful picture of the value of education not only for the African girl child, but for her community both real and virtual.
Congratulations on getting an education, the doors it has opened for you, and the change you have been able to create because of it. I hope that other villagers see your story and are inspired by it to send their daughters to school.
You are an excellent role model, an esteemed change maker and a true World Pulse woman!
We look forward to reading more about your projects and exploits through your future stories.

CHRISTINE TERINA
Mar 08
Mar 08

Thank you. Together we can create a better world for human beings. Am humbled

Carine Fola fomduwir

Woe sister this is lovely.I celebrate you

Beth Lacey
Mar 08
Mar 08

Thank you for posting- so powerful!

Paulina Nayra
Mar 08
Mar 08

Dear Christine,
Your journey is inspiring Christine. Being the only girl who have the privilege of getting indication may have encouraged mothers to send their girls to school. You've come a long way from being a pastoralist girl to become a champion to end FGM. May there'll be more Christine who will follow the path you have created for girls and women.

Huggs.

CHRISTINE TERINA
Mar 08
Mar 08

Thank you sister

Paulina Nayra
Mar 21
Mar 21

Your welcome sister. I noticed the mistake. It's education not indication on the 2nd sentence. :-)

CHRISTINE TERINA
Mar 15
Mar 15

Hugs too dear sister

Dr Jackie
Mar 08
Mar 08

Christine!!!!!! There are so many beautiful things that you have mentioned here in a very compelling fashion. How wonderful to learn of your great story and what you are doing for your community. Thank you for being such a difference. We will keep doing what we can to light up the world for other young girls and women. Happy IWD 2021 to you!

Jackie

CHRISTINE TERINA
Mar 08
Mar 08

Thank you

Phinnie
Mar 08
Mar 08

Dear Christine--What a powerful post on International Women's Day! Congratulations to you for overcoming so many obstacles as you pursued your education and your determination for other girls to follow in your footsteps! You are truly an inspiration and thank-you for sharing your story with us!

CHRISTINE TERINA
Mar 15
Mar 15

Thank you dear

Aparna Sanjay
Mar 09
Mar 09

I'm humbled by how far you have come and how you have given back to your community in so many ways, using your education to campaign against practices that are detrimental to women and girls (and indeed, the entire community). May you and yours go from strength to strength.

CHRISTINE TERINA
Mar 15
Mar 15

Thank you sister

Juliana Imoisili
Mar 15
Mar 15

Wow,what a story,I hope one day I will cross this bridge and also use my life and story to inspire others, Education is a life changer, please Lord make ways for me to go back to school,this really touched me in so many ways.thanks for sharing.

CHRISTINE TERINA
Mar 15
Mar 15

You will sister. Your dreams are valid no matter where you are now. Don’t give up. A bright future awaits you

Juliana Imoisili
Mar 16
Mar 16

Amen sister, thanks so much for the encouraging words.

nilza costa
Mar 18
Mar 18

Hi Christine

Very nice your story. A story full of dignity and desire to give life to dreams. I got really excited. A big hug.

MariaJ Vargas
Apr 01
Apr 01

Thanks Christine for your words and bravery and encouragement. As you said I believe Education is the change-maker, is the one gate that can open opportunities and enable us to stand up and to be stronger when we face difficulties. Your story is so inspiring and thanks for not giving up and stay true to your values.