Educate a girl, empower a woman, inspire a community, change lives!

Recently, one of our CCLEF sponsored girls was presented with The Bianca Jagger Human Rights Foundation Award for Courage. Nancy Tomee of the Pokot tribe in Northern Kenya, won the award for her courageous stand against the barbaric practice of female genital mutilation (FGM).

The award was received by Domtila Chesang, who also campaigns against FGM, on Nancy's behalf because Nancy was writing her final secondary school leaving exams. The presentation took place during the the second Bianca Jagger Human Rights Foundation Arts for Human Rights Benefit Gala Auction which was held on October 2014 at Phillips, Howick Place in London. Various artists generously donated their work to be auctioned inlcuding: Alex Katz, Anselm Kiefer, Bill Viola, Francesco Clemente, Francesco Vezzoli, Gustavo Aceves, Jason Martin, Jules de Balincourt, Manolo Blahnik, Marc Quinn, Marina Abramovic, Martin Creed, Not Vital, Raqib Shaw, Retna, Richard Long, Robert Longo, Ross Bleckner,Sir David Chipperfield, Sylvie Fleury, Tracey Emin, and Yoko Ono.

“I am representing those that are demanding that change, for each girl needs to be a source of further change, and I am an ambassador,” she said at the high-level dialogue, which was organized by the Organization of African First Ladies against HIV/AIDS (OAFLA) in partnership with UNFPA.

At the event, which coincided with the 69th session of the United Nations General Assembly, first ladies from around Africa and the world called on global leaders to support the rights and welfare of adolescent girls – particularly those in Africa, where girls continue to endure high rates of child marriage and early pregnancy, leading to lower levels of secondary school completion and higher levels of maternal death.

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Through the CCLEF, we still have direct communication with Nancy and her school.  We knew about Nancy’s determination to fight FGM. Two years ago she wrote this to the CCLEF as part of her application:

"I would like to become a doctor in future because I would like to assist people in my community to know the consequences of Female Genital Mutilation.  I am from a community which practices this and I was lucky to have been saved from this practice. "

Please join us in congratulating her and do share her story through social media and in any way you can.