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Gender and Violence

SALAMMALEKUM,
Today I have been given a strength of a woman raising her voice!!! I have a' Vocal Contributor Badge.'Thank you so much for choosing me among many voices,may the Spirit of God continue guiding you in all you do at the front desk.I am a baby girl born in a very deep rural part of Kenya,nobody here value a girl child;;I am growing up in a family of men and I hear an echo each an every second/-Anyango,you have not fetch fire wood,you have not fetch water,you have not cooked,you have not finished your work.Anyango;sit well,do not argue with your brother and so many others.In this home,it is a rule from my grand mother that a girl child can only be taken to school if there is surplus of money,if the budget is tight then the boy gets it.I am today a teen-age in this home and in this community,I am growing with so much mental torture with trauma;I am tired.In school,I am a number 1 student in academic,Social and sports,but who recognizes this in the village?Back here I am a village girl.I thank my father for taking me to school,though he had preassure from his mother,he went a head and took me to a missionary boarding school,this school was a Dutch mission school,the leading team in this school were from Holland and I thank them so much because they have contributed to who I am today.LANG ZAL ZE LIVEN.Today I am a young beautiful Luo Lady!!!I I am the talk of the village,men are flopping into my Father's compound,;old and young,;I am in Auction'here is my Father,sitting under his guava tree thinking deeply;,what is wrong with this people?I want my daughter to learn and have a Profession,she has a potential.He calls me and share with me,we have an agreement that I be in school even during holidays.Now I am a child of the Convent,I attend prayers in the morning,in the afternoon and every evening,I am obedient and spiritual child of God.My Father,Mother and my siblings only see in school.Back in the village,people think I am a visitor in my home,some say she is Anyango.They are wondering;;'I have done so well in my exams and now I am to join a Medical Training Center.I am in this college for 4 years,but very bitter at what girls and women are experiencing in my village and country.I have graduated and posted to the Rift Valley Province,the girl child is treated the same way to my Province.Here I meet a man from my tribe,I am in love,I share with my Daddy,he says 'Yes' A wonderful wedding is in the village,Anyango is getting married,my Community are now proud of their learned girl' Anyango' I am now in marriage and working in a hospital,I thought that I could be happy mother,but where?My husband is a man brought up in a village with the same cultures and it is tough.In this house,I am a woman,I am expected to kneel down when my husband walks into the house and take hold of what he has in his hands,standing up ,I am to help him remove his coat and remove his shoes from his feet while kneeling down.When he calls my name,I am to answer very fast go to him kneeling,when serving him food,I have to wash his hands for him while kneeling and give him food in his mouth in 3 bites and then walk away.This man has so many women outside and the women are calling my phone making fun of me.I ask him why and he says;;'you are a woman'';your education is nothing to me.Now I have 3 children who are all girls,his family say that I am wasting his seed;'Now he is bringing women in this house and he is saying that if I do not like it then,I am free to go.I am tired and by the strength of my spirit,I decided to leave his house.I am now gone and feeding my children and taking them to school.Time is now gone and today I have two sons who are in High school,my daughters are doing so well and independent.As a working class woman who went through so much violence and abuse,I never wasted even a single penny from my pocket,I bought a parcel of land and built a home for me and my children.Back in the year 2007-2008/Post election in Kenya-un expected deaths and in displacements were the talk of the day.Back home I remembered my self at Rapogi girls Boarding school,I saw my self under the sweet love from the Godly white Ladies from the Nether-Lands.I said No to mistreatment of children and hunger,I gave them my home,and made sure that they are eating and getting and Education.As a child who passed through many hands,I said that no matter what it takes I will make it,I will not get tired.I have walked so many miles tirelessly,I have sold my property in order to see that it is done.The inner most part of me my soul,my spirit empowered by the Holy spirit of God kept holding my hands and giving me his holy water to quench my thirst,he never made me feel that I am tired.By the power of the Holy spirit I kept my inner most me strong,I promised my self that I will over come and I WILL BRING A CHANGE TO MY COMMUNITY,I WILL SHOW THEM THAT A GIRL-CHILD IS NOT A TABOO BUT A BLESSING FROM GOD THE FATHER,GOD THE SON AND GOD THE HOLY SPIRIT.I have gathered young and old poor widows in a forum of move on with sustainability programmes and you have to know your rights as women,never accept that you are weak,we are strong as from Day 1 of God's creation,we changed the order of the day by showing Adam what he did not know.God loves us so much and instead of punishing us he punished Adam to times for his weakness,us we were blessed with child labor and flourish with Mother-hood.Women stand firm do not show weakness in anything you do at any time,we are strong and we can do it.Raise your voice by Doing it,talk less and say more.Find me in-http//ketwangiwordpress.com

This story was written for World Pulse’s Ending Violence Against Women Digital Action Campaign.

World Pulse believes that women's stories, recommendations, and collective rising leadership can—and will—bring an end to gender-based violence. The EVAW Campaign elicits powerful content from women on the ground, strengthens their confidence as vocal grassroots leaders, and ensures that influencers and powerful institutions hear their stories.
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Comments

Kim Crane's picture

A reason to be proud!

Emily Anyango,

Thank you for sharing your story. It is an inspiration for any woman who has been pushed down for her ambition, confidence, and bright shining light in the world. Your children--instilled with the courage and confidence from their strong, loving mama-- are incredible gifts to the world. I wish you and your children continued success and happiness, and hopefully an easier road ahead.

Kim

Emily Anyango's picture

Thank you so much

Hi Kim,
Thank you so much,without determination we can not make it,we have to continue raising our voices and be creative.
Emily

ketwangi orphanage and learning center Kisumu Kenya

Leslie Stoupas's picture

I Admire You!

What an inspiring life you have had! So many women need to see this courage to know that they, too, can change their lives, reject abuse and violence, raise their children differently and be their own person. I am impressed by all that you have accomplished in such difficult situations. I am grateful that you have shared your story and your perspective with so many of us in this forum.

Leslie Stoupas

lydiagcallano's picture

Inspiring!

Emily, I can relate to your story because I have witnessed gender bias in my own country (The Philippines). It was a good thing that male atrocities and the machismo image are no longer true for us. They are just part of Philippine history. Today, Filipino women are recognized as partners of the men in family management, local governance, nation building, and globalization.

RDC will be where many developing and developed countries are now because there are citizens who are doing their part and you are one of them. You went to school and finished a degree, got a job, and owned a property. You survived an abusive husband and raised your children alone. These are awesome achievements for a woman living in a repressive situation!

You are an inspiration to the women of Congo. Continue to inspire the Congolese and help develop more "Emily Anyagos" amongst them. If there would be a legion of your kind, RDC will surely be on its way to development and greatness!

Ma. Lydia G. Callano
Iloilo, Philippines
+63 33 3158137 or 5138830

cmphung's picture

Inspired

Emily,

Thank you for your strength, your determination, and your courage. Even among such adversity from your village and community you remained strong and fought for your right to education. You believed in yourself and I hope that you are instilling that in your daughters. Your education is very important and no matter how much men try to take that away, the can't. You are strong! Remember that.

In solidarity,

Charlene Phung MPH

Y's picture

Who are the other mothers to

Who are the other mothers to your orphans? Who is the father to your sons?

Yvette

Emily Anyango's picture

Welcome

These are the children who lost both parents,I donated my home and it is a registered orphanage with a school.There are teachers and staff taking care of them.My husband left me over 20 years ago and I do not know where he is.Read the story of my orphaned children and me in -httpketwangiwordpress.com.Be Blessed.
Emily

ketwangi orphanage and learning center Kisumu Kenya

Y's picture

I have read about your work.

I have read about your work. I applaud your bravery in attempting to change your society, one child at a time. At what age are they expected to leave the orphanage? What is being done to teach them about responsible procreation? How are sexual issues dealt with in the orphanage?

Yvette

Emily Anyango's picture

Thank you

Thank you so much.Social workers are coming in turns and teaching is 2 x every week.They are taught how dangerous it is to Play sex at a tender age and they are given points on this.They are leaving after sitting their Primary Certificate Exams and if they get sponsor for secondary school Education they would proceed to secondary school but outside the home.I visit when I have some days off,I work in Mombasa which is 16 hours drive to Kisumu and is 90 minutes by Air.They are lovely you can see them in you tube.Just type ket wangi in you tube and you will see how they sing and dance.Thank you so much,
Love,
Emily

ketwangi orphanage and learning center Kisumu Kenya

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