Feb 27 2024

She Can Do It: Jane’s Journey to Redefine the Roles of Girls in Kenya


Girls deserve a childhood free from exploitation and violence. But every year, at least 12 million girls around the world are forced to marry before the age of 18. In Kenya, where 23% of girls fall victim to child marriage, 15-year-old Jane is fighting for the rights and dignity of girls to be respected. 

Girls can create a better world: a world where no child has to marry before she’s had the chance to pursue her dreams. In honor of International Women’s Day, we’re celebrating the girls who are creating a better world for women: Girls like Jane, who escaped child marriage and advocates for others to have the same opportunity. 

Read Jane’s inspiring story below, and tune into our virtual girl-led dialogue on March 15 to hear Jane and other Global G.LO.W. girl delegates speak out for girls’ rights at the 68th annual Commission on the Status of Women

“I Am a Survivor”

In the heart of Kajiado, where tradition tightly clings to the fabric of daily life, I, Jane, have emerged as a beacon of change. At the age of 15, I found myself challenging the foundations that dictated the roles of women in my community. 

I am a survivor, a young girl who was rescued from the clutches of early marriage, a practice that continues to affect our society. 

I have witnessed first-hand the devastating effects of child marriage. In a place where girls were raised to believe they were destined for a life confined to the roles of wife and mother, I discovered a world beyond the limitations of my upbringing. 

Girls deserve to be girls. GLOW Club, provides them with a safe space to learn from each other while learning to navigate the barriers that hinder their success.

My awakening came through a device foreign to my community—a smartphone. On this magical screen, I stumbled upon a film that would alter the course of my life forever: A Maasai woman, resolute and unyielding, spoke of the rights of girls, the urgency to break free from the chains of Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) and the pervasive specter of Gender-Based Violence (GBV). 

It was a revelation, a glimpse into a reality that had been concealed from me and my peers. 

Jane can create a world free of child marriage. Invest in her advocacy by donating to our “She Can Do It” campaign by March 15! 

Fueled by newfound knowledge and armed with unwavering determination, I sought refuge and guidance from an organization called Cara Projects, which introduced me to GLOW Club. Here, I found kindred spirits who believed in the transformative power of education and empowerment. 

“A Living Embodiment of Empowerment”

GLOW Club provided me with the tools I needed to navigate the complexities of my community and equipped me with the skills and courage to advocate for change.

“In a place where girls were raised to believe they were destined for a life confined to the roles of wife and mother, I discovered a world beyond the limitations of my upbringing.”

Now, I stand at the forefront of a movement, a testament to the resilience of the human spirit when confronted with adversity. I have become a living embodiment of empowerment, challenging the status quo that confined girls in my community to predefined roles. 

Through my journey, I have discovered the importance of amplifying the voices of those who have been silenced for generations. I have recognized the vital role that government leaders, policymakers, and communities play in supporting girls. I envision a future where these entities collaborate to dismantle the barriers that impede the progress of young girls. For me, the key lies in education — a tool that has the power to shatter the chains of ignorance and prejudice.

I believe that government leaders can implement policies that prioritize education for girls, ensuring equal opportunities and resources are allocated. By addressing the root causes of gender inequality and challenging harmful cultural practices, leaders can pave the way for a more inclusive and progressive society. 

Hear Jane advocate for girls’ rights at our virtual, girl-led dialogue. Register today!

There is a need for communities to actively participate in dismantling the oppressive structures that confine girls. By fostering an environment that encourages dialogue and challenges outdated norms, communities can become catalysts for change. It is a call for unity, a collective effort to redefine the narrative surrounding the role of girls in society.

“I will continue to advocate for the creation of safe spaces where girls can express themselves without fear of judgment, fostering a sense of self-worth and empowerment.”

I envision a comprehensive support system as a critical resource that girls need to reach their goals, such as accessible education, mentorship programs, and healthcare facilities tailored to the needs of girls are essential components. I will continue to advocate for the creation of safe spaces where girls can express themselves without fear of judgment, fostering a sense of self-worth and empowerment.

I am an advocate for change. I will not tolerate child marriage being thought of as a norm. It is a thief of childhood, education, and dreams. It continues the cycle of poverty, inequality, and gender discrimination. 

I am here today to break that cycle and to be a voice for the millions of girls who are still trapped in this injustice. I am determined to be a girl advocate, to raise awareness, and to fight for the rights of every young girl who deserves a chance at a better life.

Girls like Jane can create a better world. Will you invest in them? Help us reach our $5,000 fundraising goal by making a gift and sharing our digital campaign toolkit with the hashtag #SheCanDoIt. $5,000 provides a year of our signature program, GLOW Club, where girls like Jane develop the skills to advocate for themselves and others. 

Global G.L.O.W. mentors girls around the world to become powerful advocates and confident leaders. Special thanks to Cara Projects, who have continuously supported girls’ involvement in the Global G.L.O.W. Girl Advocacy Committee over the past three years.

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