Empowering Widows

Gem Village, Kenya

 

Some events and circumstances can hardly be avoided. When we speak of death, it is a natural calamity that cannot be avoided regardless of the causes: as long as you were born, death is a guarantee. When two people are married they become one until death separates them. Death not only separates the two but everything that joined them; shared responsibilities and efforts result in doubling the burden on the one who remains. Tradition makes it worse when a woman refuses to be inherited by the relative of the deceased: she is kicked out together with her children and all that she had is taken away by the immediate family. Many widows suffered this mistreatment and some even chose to commit suicide so that their children would go back to the families. It is a painful situation that must be urgently addressed and reviewed.

 

GHNI-Kenya has stood with the widows of Gem Village, forming groups that are coached before receiving loans for capacity building, which generates income for the upkeep of the family, and also on the correct legal recourse regarding how to get what rightfully belongs to them.

 

Gem Widows Association has individual as well as group functions that generate income and enable them to pay back their soft loans without interest, so as to help others who are in their shoes. Mama  Susan chairs the group and sees to it that all perform well towards a common goal of transformation. They formed a water supply group that has been invited to many community functions for tasks like supplying water and firewood during burial ceremonies, weddings, or any other function in the villages and that pays them well as a group and promotes their living. She has benefited so much from this along with her crew, and they have been able to provide food and quality education to their children.

 

Thank you!

 

Habiba
GHNI National Field Leader

 

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