Kenya: Campaign against harmful beading culture in Samburu communities
They are beautiful when worn around the neck. But unknown to many, some beads symbolize bondage to young girls from the Samburu and Rendile communities who inhabit Samburu, Isiolo, Laikipia and Marsabit counties.
While some parents buy the beads for their daughters, others wait for the community warriors (morans) to give them; a gesture that announces the commencement of an intimate relationship. This relationship is not supposed to end in pregnancy and should the beaded girl conceive, it is the beginning of a physical and psychological trauma for the young mother and her child.
In the past two years Samburu Women Trust (SWT) has been carrying out an anti beading campaign project in Ol Donyiro division of Isiolo County on a pilot basis with a view of replicating the programme in other affected areas . From the Beads of Bondage to The Killing Silence, the community is gradually taking the bold step of voicing their fears and concerns on this retrogressive cultural practice.
Click on thelink below to download a report about girl child beading in the Samburu community and the campaign started by SWT to try and stamp out this harmful practice.
Photo: Samburu girl. Credit: Voice of Reason