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Fatuma Abdulkadir commented on Breaking the silence through football

Thank you Chris! Definitely there is a huge link and potential to focus on sports for development. Take a moment to check out the football4good magazine with our story!


Fatuma Abdulkadir commented on Breaking the silence through football

Thanks Chris! It is very unique especially in the North of Kenya and sports is one of the best tools to even achieve the Global Goals!


Fatuma Abdulkadir commented on Breaking the silence through football

Dear Team,
Below is our response.

a) Current Model and thoughts for financial sustainability
In the beginning we worked with older girls as trainers and peer educators. As HODI we also provided opportunity to engage the volunteers and offer employment opportunity. This served as an incentive on top of providing financial support for those still in school and learning. Currently we have two former peer educators who are full time staff and support the program. Training of younger girls who are school going as peer educators and young leaders become an alternative after 1st year. This cuts on the costs for the peer educators and also saves time for engagement. The young leaders are already within the school and are also easily accessible for follow up clarifications by their peers. It has also built leadership capacities for younger girls with two presidents elected in a mixed school.

At the organisation level HODI under the current strategic plan (2016-2020) one of the key priority is to initiate a social enterprise currently in planning stages but to be built on existing life skill center which has 15 tailoring machines. This will be a business model to generate income for HODI programs in future. It will involve selling of products and reinvesting back the revenue to run programs. It will definitely reduce dependency and enhance financial sustainability for HODI.

b) How do you encourage the wider community to support this project?
HODI currently works with 150 communities and supports them to come up with action plans to address issues affecting them within their respective villages. Each school has feeder villages and the communities sending their children are also engaged alongside the schools. We also an education program that ensures most vulnerable children access education especially girls. This ensures that girl are engaged and in case they drop out are returned to school. In the past year over 500 children mostly girls were returned to school.

As HODI begins a new program always a baseline survey is undertaken which forms the basis of any future engagement. The information gathered is also used to inform the foundation of the new intervention. The coaches, peer educators and field managers are all from the community in most instances they are nominated to HODI by the community.

HODI works with 150 communities in the 4 sub counties of Marsabit. This communities meet every twice a month to deliberate on issues that affect them and come up with action plans. First they look internally for existing capacities and take action and in instances of gaps then HODI links them up with stakeholders to implement the action plans. In most of the communities currently FGM, Early Marriage and Beading are key issues affecting girls and as such is priority for most of the communities. Making the communities directly involved and engaged in the process of Breaking the Silence.

c) How do you engage girls that are not interested in participating in the football games or are discouraged to participate?
Currently most of the girls are interested in football, most were not allowed to take part in any sporting activity so football provides the one and only chance. But we also have the peer education session which does not include the actual participation in football and gives a chance to the girls not interested in football. Some of the girls take refereeing, first aid and emceeing during the football. This ensures they are able to participate without playing the actual game of football.

d) How is your program novel or different from similar initiatives in the space?
Our program is very unique and innovative, Breaking the Silence won the Beyond Sports Award for Social Inclusion in 2015. It is among the first and one of its kind in the whole of Northern Kenya and Horn of Africa where football is used as a tool to engage girls. It gives the girls a voice and a choice by placing them at the center of decision making processes. It's not up to anyone else to stand up for them they need to be able to stand up for themselves; tell their own stories in their own words and be a champion of their destiny. Below is the link

The HODI model is holistic in that it works not only with the girls themselves but with parents, teachers, community and stakeholders including the Ministry of Education in Breaking the Silence. They learn life skills including how to use there voice, confidence, just being yourself and appreciating who you are as a girl. Also about rights and responsibilities; FGM and its effects; safe spaces, Leaning to say No; On personal hygiene, health and something about money. Ours is a holistic approach and does not just deal with one aspect of the girl but looks at protection, safe spaces, support from brother and father and putting the girl as a champion in Breaking the Silence on issues that affect them.