I really enjoyed my term as a student leader at Mount Kenya University. From my experiential term in office, I was motivated to start my organization called Women Promotion Centre. Our work involves engaging with women and girls in Kibera and educating them on their health. We discuss key issues on reproductive health and family planning. We also empower them with education on financial wellness and entrepreneurship.
My leadership experience has been a good challenge. The challenges that I face in my leadership are a good learning experience. It is quite difficult for women to talk openly about their preferred family planning methods. However, the more you engage with them, the more outspoken they become. Another challenge that I am facing is finding dedicated and consistent volunteers. The work is very intensive. Many volunteers find it difficult to travel to the slum often. A personal challenge I am facing is how to make decisions for my team. I am learning the importance of listening and effective communication.
My motivation to lead are the challenges that many women and girls are facing in the slums. The Emerging Leaders training by Akili Dada was very practical as it taught me how to be emotionally intelligent. Dealing with rape cases and violence against women needs someone who has a thick skin and is mentally and emotionally strong. I also learnt the importance of managerial and administration skills.
The responsibilities that I manage daily include: reaching out to different women and girls in the slum, organizing events that help my organization to be financially sustainable, and liaising with the Ministry of Health, different hospitals and medical professionals to engage with the women I work with. As a law student, I believe I can do and learn anything, even in health. One of the activities I conducted recently was menstrual hygiene session for girls at Ayani Primary School in Kibera during the Menstrual Hygiene Day.
I seek inspiration from the women I work with. One of my greatest motivation and mentor is Mary Magdalene, a refugee from Sudan. She has helped many refugee women and continues to help other many women. My family is also a very strong supportive system. When I suggested to them that I wanted to be a student leader, they motivated me and even gave me financial support.
Leadership is a learned. To keep on learning about how to be a better leader, I mentoring other students who want to vie in school leadership. Since I performed well during my term, I believe that by sharing what I learnt, I can continue to affect change in my school.