Category: Blog, Events, Storytelling

International Day of the Girl 2016

OCTOBER 22

INTERNATIONAL DAY OF THE GIRL
Kibera, Kenya

On Saturday, we held our annual International Day of the Girl conference! It was a huge success! This year’s conference brought together 100 students from all around Nairobi to develop leadership skills, storytelling with dignity, and violence prevention through education. We gathered in Kibera, East Africa’s largest slum, to celebrate girls!

Take a look at what happened on Saturday:

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This year’s conference focused on personal stories of transformation, biblical based teachings on healing, music and poetry that mends the soul, and expressive works of art that promotes healing—and of course, dance is an important cultural element of healing for inner expression.

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Following the theme of “Healed to Heal,” students learned about the healing process and how all people can find healing despite brokenness.

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Special thanks to our organizational partners who joined us—bringing students, their leadership expertise, and their work that helps to fight against sexual violence in Kenya: One Lamb, Garden of Hope Foundation, Art & Abolition, I Can Fly International, Nairobi Chapel, and Reverend Sonji Pass. With the culmination of partnerships, students knew that they can reach out to any one of us for academic, legal, social, or health support.

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In small groups, students read biographies of women who have overcome tremendous obstacles of abuse, rape, violence, and war. Despite their past brokenness, were able to rise above and be an inspiration to others. Students discussed how these stories of healing might apply to their own lives.

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Students presented their depictions of healing in the form of a drawing. This group showed how before (left image), an abused person is in pain shown by a wilted flower. But after she begins to share her story with others and is helped, she regains strength and her flower blooms vibrantly.

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Our very own, Lydia, Freely in Hope’s Community Outreach Fellow, planned, designed, and led the conference like a boss. Freely in Hope scholars are practicing their leadership by empowering others to become leaders as well.

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Our hope for the event is that through the stories shared, girls have been able to experience healing and use their own stories to help heal others.