Martha’s story

Martha is a 10 year old girl in Standard 2 at AIC Namanga Primary school, who lives with her parents. She is from an extended family and her father has 10 wives. Martha has 7 siblings, 3 from her mother, where she is the eldest, and 4 from stepmothers. The family can only afford one meal a day which is usually taken in the evening. Martha’s mother, Bernadette, sells beaded necklaces in the market and her father is unemployed.

Martha was rescued from early marriage two years ago. She was brought to AIC Namanga Primary school to complete her Primary education. She covers a distance of 16 kilometres when walking to school and back, which takes about 3 hours. She walks through Amboseli National Park, which is extremely dangerous as she has to look-out for wild animals, such as elephants, especially when she’s going home. Her two siblings accompany her on the journey to school, but due to the distance and their age, they usually end up being late.

Since the introduction of iMlango, Martha has shown a positive attitude towards learning and achieving her dream of becoming a doctor. She enjoys “sQuidding” and makes sure she doesn’t miss school unless there is a genuine reason. Martha’s class teacher, Madam Joyce Mathu, acknowledges that her attendance in school has improved when compared to before the programme started. Martha is also benefiting from the support initiative, where a small payment is made to her family to help pay for food.

Martha's mother, Bernadette, now understands the importance of her daughter’s education, saying “I am very grateful for iMlango and I promise that Martha will not miss school again, I will put more effort to make sure that my daughter’s education will be a success not only to her but to the entire community...Asante sana iMlango kwa msaada mlionilitea AIC Namanga Munguawabariki (Thank you very much iMlango for the help brought to AIC Namanga may God bless you.)”