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Keeping Girls in School

Avoiding the Drop-out Cliff

The rural Maasai Mara has the highest school drop-out rate in Kenya, and the numbers are especially high for girls. When a girl here drops out of school, it can mean not only an end to her education and opportunities, but also often early forced marriage and FGM. Our mission is for all children to attend school — and to flourish once there. In the Maasai Mara we address the challenge holistically through scholarships, mentorship, and clean water so students can learn, and by boosting the poorest schools with resources like high-quality libraries and science labs. 

 

And yet, girls need more than that to stay in school.

We found a spike in drop-outs among girls in the junior high and early high school years in the Mara, and it coincides with getting their period. In fact, fewer than 10% of girls here are enrolling in high school, and even fewer make it through. With no materials to manage their monthly cycle, they stay home 4 or 5 days a month, fall behind, and end up quitting school, even if they are highly motivated as students. 

 

This is a problem that can be solved, but we can't do it without your help!

Girls need sanitary supplies and health knowledge to go with them. At our Women's Work Center, we're making high-quality reusable sanitary kits to distribute free to girls in school. We are a registered Affiliate of the Save a Girl™ program (learn more below), and use their tried-and-true patterns for kits that have proven to help girls stay in school in many other rural communities. Please join us in making this happen for 1000s of young women.

Provide Sanitary Kits for 1250 At-Risk Students at Sekenani Girls High School!

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In 2024, we're partnering with Sekenani Girls High School, one of the most under-resourced rural schools in the Maasai Mara. You can join us by giving generously, and your gift will get right to work! We're a 501c3 nonprofit, Platinum rated by Guidestar, and your gift is tax deductible in the U.S. as allowed by law.

$12 per kit keeps a girl in school by providing supplies and health education, and pays the women who make the kits so they can support their families too. Learn more below on how your donation is applied.

Learn More

How We Do It

Our sanitary kits are made by trained seamstresses at the Oliveseed Women's Work Center in the Maasai Mara. As a registered Affiliate of the Save a Girl (SaG) program of The Global Uplift Project, we use the SaG patterns and meet their standards, making kits that have proven successful for over 80,000 girls in rural communities, including in Kenya. We make the kits in our community, near Sekenani and other schools.

 

The women who make these kits are so passionate about this mission and do beautiful work. When you give to this project, you're helping both girls and women — as your gift not only buys the kits but also puts income in the hands of the women so they can help their families too. They keep their own kids in school by paying school fees with the money they earn.

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GOOD TO KNOW

  • At $12 a kit, this is one of the most cost-effective ways in the world to help girls stay in school. $6 is the cost of making the kit itself, including paying the seamstress and buying the materials; $2 buys additional needed supplies we provide each girl, including soap, washcloths, and panties; and $4 supports the Women's Work Center, including purchasing and maintaining tools and machines, providing lunch for the workers, and keeping the lights on.

  • When we distribute the kits at schools, we provide a training session to the girls about good hygiene and reproductive health, with materials provided by Save a Girl. The schools are very supportive in this.

  • We choose fabrics and accessories that are beautiful, colorful, and varied, so the girls are joyful about receiving their kit. An important part of our program is for the girls to feel pride in becoming a woman.​​​​

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We launched this iniative in May 2024 with 50 kits at Sekenani Girls. 1200 more to go!

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