Edna Kaptoyo

 

I’m the eldest in my family. I grew up in a community 500 kilometres away from the city. I consider myself a village girl. I like the quiet, clean environment. Growing up I saw my mother organising women in my community. I would join their women’s meetings when I was as young as seven years old, listening to them talk about their own development as women within the community. Interacting with them inspired me to join the movement and to see a change.

I now work with women from different communities throughout Kenya. The challenges I see out there really resonate with me. I know what it is like to live and go to school without electricity. For 20 years I only saw the electrical poles passing by my community. I know what it is like not to have water or travel several kilometres in search of water, spending the whole day looking for it. This is what motivated me to work with community organisations and really engage with and empower women. I’ve seen how my mother as an empowered woman has been able to change and support us through school. You can see in different households where women are empowered that they are able to make a difference and also empower other women.

I also advocate for the needs of the women and communities I work with in policy. We have a lot of policies but don’t see them translated at the local level; it’s challenging working in policy spaces where it’s so hard to see change. So, we’ve decided to work with women in communities to implement a component of the policy and to show policy-makers that it’s doable. I want policy-makers to move from political will to political action. At the same time, I try to empower women in communities to understand political issues and how they can really organise and empower themselves, like my mother did.

 

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By | 2018-03-06T20:11:51+00:00 March 6th, 2018|Our stories|0 Comments