The Uuuhs and Aaarghs of my life

Posts tagged ‘Women’

Enough. 

For the last 4 days, a stranger has been calling and texting me using multiple numbers. He knows my name and it’s scary! 

It all began with a, “Please help me, I’m homeless” message. It soon graduated to a, “May God forgive you for ignoring me” message. Today I woke up to “Why??? I love you, I’m not giving up” message. Truecaller confirms that it’s been 35 calls and 23 text messages.

After calling the police hotline to report, the officer advised me to visit a police station and make a report and get an OB number. 

Yesterday, I visited a police station and as soon as I stated my case, the male officer didn’t even look at me and pointed me to a chair using a pen. I sat down and waited. 
When a female officer walked in, she asked me to state my case and immediately referred me to another male officer to help me make a report. It seemed she was the only one making things happen at the police station. 

But as soon as she left to handle another matter, the male officer laughed and said he didn’t know what to report about my case. He read through my messages and abandoned my phone at the reception, as soon as another male officer came though with a request for a spare tire. 
Luckily, another female officer walked in and immediately attended to my case. 

As she recorded my statement and handed over my phone… her male colleagues distracted her with kicks in her shin, spanking her bottom, and another even forced a hug on her. I could see that she was uncomfortable but afraid to tell them to stop.

Walking out of the police station reception, I saw a group of policemen in civilian clothing silently staring at me in a way that made me feel like bolting away. 

All I felt was a deep sense of shame and betrayal as a Kenyan woman. 
Because it seems that our women are seen as objects, and not whole worthy human beings who deserve respect. 

#RespectOurWomen

Totally Femme and Able!

A woman is enough.

She can protect herself and her loved ones. 

She can be confident to step out of her doorstep and be safe.

She can be in the company of a man and know that she too can defend.

She can discipline her mind to think heroine and not victim when in danger.

Femme is enough.

 

Action Time!

I believe that women and girls in Nairobi need to be proactive with their personal security. I’ve had close-shave incidents at work, school, in the streets of Nairobi, and in the company of friends, where to be honest I wasn’t equipped enough to defend.

So this is how we can always be prepared heroines …

 

Krav Maga Women's Self-Defence Class Poster

 

Shadow Krav-Maga Female Self-defence Classes

Yuly G, an International Krav-Maga and Karate instructor invited me to join him in signing-up groups of 20 women and girls in Nairobi for self-defence classes. We both believe in proactive over reactive personal security measures. The classes will begin from Sunday, 27th March 2016 and sign-ups are ongoing via the email provided on the poster above.

Ladies will be trained using the Shadow Krav-Maga technique which was initially developed as an unarmed combat system for the Israeli Defense Forces. Its goal is to stop violence without violence. The Karen, Parklands and Jaffery Centre (Lavington) Sports clubs will be the locations for the classes which will be happening on Sunday and Saturday afternoons and Wednesday evenings at 6pm. Ladies can sign-up for the One-day or the 2-month classes as shown below:

+ One-day class for 3 to 4 hours at Ksh. 2,500 or USD $25. Acquired Skills include basic self-defence skills against grabbing, choking, pushing and theft.

+ Two-month class for 16 hours at Ksh. 8,500 or USD $85. One hour per class twice a week, or more hours per class if the group is happy with that. Acquired Skills include basic and advanced self-defence skills from attacks with sharp objects, punching, kicking and ground attacks (like sexual attacks). Psychology self-defence and manipulation of mind and body of attacker. Self-defence by using surrounding objects. In addition, there will be Fitness, Cardio, weight management training.

 

Yuly Profiler

 

How to Prepare for Class

First, ensure that you’re signed-up in a group of 20 ladies for either one of the classes on offer. This is done through sending a request via email on poster above and making an advance payment of 50% (non-refundable) of the total class fee to the Mpesa number that’ll be provided via email. The other 50% can be paid right before class.

Second, once your group of 20 ladies is all set, a date will be confirmed for your class. Yay! All you need for class is proper training gear (long trouser and strong T-shirt), a bottle of water and a towel. Training equipment and shower rooms will be available at the locations. NB: Girls between ages 13-18 should come with a guardian or parent.

Third or even immediately, do share this information with other women and girls so that just like you, they can proactively equip themselves for self-defence. Imagine the news stories changing to: “Nairobi woman defends herself against armed attacker.”

Woman_power_symbol

I choose to be a heroine.

I choose to be prepared.

I choose to be totally femme & able.

 

Let’s do this ladies!

🙂

 

Rivers or Dams? Pick one!

 

Berta Caceres 2015 Goldman Environmental Award Recipient

Berta Caceres stands at the Gualcarque River in the Rio Blanco region of western Honduras where she, COPINH (the Council of Popular and Indigenous Organizations of Honduras) and the people of Rio Blanco have maintained a two year struggle to halt construction on the Agua Zarca Hydroelectric project, that poses grave threats to local environment, river and indigenous Lenca people from the region. Source: goldmanprize.org

 

As we chase after modern knowledge, skills & lifestyles, are we loosing ourselves?

We are all indigenous to somewhere on this earth.

We all came from somewhere!

Our human identity isn’t in fashion brands, fast cars, academic achievements, air mileage and fancy houses.

Our identity depends on real connections with humanity, not things.

Berta Cáceres has taught us an expensive lesson – to protect our identity or allow our footprints to vanish from existence.

This International Women’s Day 2016, I celebrate Berta’s courage as a female warrior who fought for equality, environmental conservation, protection of her indigenous culture and peace!

Visit goldmanprize.org for more about Berta Cáceres!

#IWD2016

 

 

My failures, our lessons

strong

I recently experienced a season of failure in business and so I have come to learn that failure is an ingredient of great success. My attitude towards this has helped me embrace it, learn from it and find ways to keep working on my ideas and dreams.

Today, I enjoyed an inspiring conversation with my house-help about the GES 2015. She told me that she’s been in business before and that she’s been saving up to rekindle her business back in the village so that her daughter can access secondary school education.

I promised to be on the lookout for opportunities that would benefit her and she encouraged me to keep working on my dreams and never give up.

So there we were, two 27-year-old Kenyan women from different backgrounds who’d failed in business yet still encouraging each other.

This brings to life Gena Showalte’s words, “Giving up is the only way to fail.”

#StayPositive 

#StrippingShame in Kenya

image

Stop Violence against Women

Dear World Citizen,

I am not sure about you but I can’t escape the feeling of disgust and fear every time I leave my home nowadays.

I don’t drive but use public transportation quite a lot to go about my errands. This means that I’ve got to walk a lot in public.

However, never have I felt so paranoid in my life when in public! As I walk in the market, at the bus stop, inside the matatu (public transportation mini van), along the street at the city centre… almost everywhere.

Why? Because there are men everywhere. Recently, perverted men have been attacking little girls, women and even grannies in broad daylight!!!

Every day, I realise that yet another woman has been attacked by men, even a police man. As she tried to board a public bus, as she sold food in the streets, as she went about her day along a public path, as she sat in a matatu.

Worse is that our local authorities wait until a violated woman personally reports an incident as perverts are allowed to walk free just because they are men.

I don’t wish for my country to be like India where rape cases increased by about 500% in a decade simply because no one cared to discipline young men who viewed women as objects.

image

Real Cause of Rape

The attacks on women in Nairobi are not about dress codes or the length of a woman’s skirt. Perverts who are young non-empowered men are releasing their frustrations by attacking women because they KNOW they can get away with it.

Neither the President of Kenya nor the First Lady have addressed this issue yet… they do have a daughter. Don’t other people’s daughters, wives, sisters, mothers and grandmothers matter just like their own?

Kenyans have recently marched in the streets of Nairobi to protest against the  attacks.
Social media campaigns like #MyDressMyChoice continue as the public reports and condemn the attacks.
TV exposés and debates have been done by journalists and still continue.
Yet still, the most effective way to correct this situation remains dormant – Kenyan legislature and executive!

Female members of parliament have issued press statements. Others have even offered their own money to reward those who expose the offenders. Still, their voices remain clouded by silent male MPs – some who think that it’s the women’s fault.

Surely, what can we do to end this?
You and I are the public in the public.
We are the ones in danger!

What are some of the things we could do as the public to ensure that perverts and attackers don’t get to run our city?

image

A safer world for women and girls

No matter the risk of sounding like a delusional woman, I still pray and hope that my country will become a safer place for women and girls to live in.

For now, the battle against violence against women and girls continues. In our individual capacities, wherever we may be around the world, let our purple ribbons wrap and protect women in our societies.

Ayuma.

Breast Cancer Awareness Month 2014!

oct-breast-cancer-awareness-month1_01

Breast Cancer Awareness Month 2014 – Pink Ribbon

Tag Cloud