E3 Running an online and offline anti FGM campaign with Catherine Thiakunu

E3 Running an online and offline anti FGM campaign with Catherine Thiakunu

Catherine has been rallying different organizations, the media and individual activists towards FGM-caused deaths in Meru county. Among them is #FGMKilledJelida, which broke traditional culture and had a childless girl being buried in Igembe, Meru County. She is the founder, Care Health Providers.

ABOUT #FGMKilledJelida
Jelida, a 14-year-old, died from FGM type 2 and was disowned by her family in December 2018. After vigorous lobbying, Jelida was laid to rest after the influence of the Ameru council of elders in Meru County in Laare. A memorial stone now stands at their headquarters in Meru.

Twitter: @K_thiakunu
Catherine’s #EndFGMPodcast Quotes

My cousin whom we lived together with, underwent FGM and died during childbirth due to post-partum haemorrhage. ~ @K_thiakunu #EndFGMPodcast Quotes #PodsNBO Cc: @TonyMwebia @SaropaTimpiyian #EndFGM Click To Tweet
My campaign began when a house girl who had completed high school went back home to get circumcised. I realised FGM isn't just a children issue in Meru county. ~ @K_thiakunu #EndFGMPodcast Quotes #PodsNBO Cc: @TonyMwebia @SaropaTimpiyian… Click To Tweet
I realized there were no organizations working in Meru to #EndFGM. I approached the Anti-FGM Board to ask them why they are not in Meru county. ~ @K_thiakunu #EndFGMPodcast Quotes #PodsNBO Cc: @TonyMwebia @SaropaTimpiyian #EndFGM Click To Tweet
I reported the case of Jelida Gachuiri, a girl who died due to FGM to get justice. ~ @K_thiakunu #EndFGMPodcast Quotes #PodsNBO Cc: @TonyMwebia @SaropaTimpiyian #EndFGM Click To Tweet
The grandpa to Jelida said that she passed on due to stomach complications. The family did not want to disclose that she had undergone FGM. ~ @K_thiakunu #EndFGMPodcast Quotes #PodsNBO Cc: @TonyMwebia @SaropaTimpiyian #EndFGM Click To Tweet
The perpetrators including the parents, the aunt where Jelida was circumcised and the circumciser, all disappeared. ~ @K_thiakunu #EndFGMPodcast Quotes #PodsNBO Cc: @TonyMwebia @SaropaTimpiyian #EndFGM Click To Tweet
In February 5th during the end FGM conference, I raised the question to the PS, Gender, that Jelida passed on due to FGM and no action has been taken. ~ @K_thiakunu #EndFGMPodcast Quotes #PodsNBO Cc: @TonyMwebia @SaropaTimpiyian #EndFGM Click To Tweet
Together with the youth, we used social media to demand justice for Jelida. After two weeks, the mainstream media went to Meru to cover the story and found that Jelida wasn't circumcised alone, but among six other girls. ~ @K_thiakunu… Click To Tweet
A post-mortem was done by a pathologist whom we trust. The results said she died of FGM type two. A bacterial infection from the wound spread to the body. ~ @K_thiakunu #EndFGMPodcast Quotes #PodsNBO Cc: @TonyMwebia @SaropaTimpiyian… Click To Tweet
I asked how I can give Jelida a decent burial after learning that the family had planned to dispose her body. I contacted the family and the uncle accepted but later they changed their mind. ~ @K_thiakunu #EndFGMPodcast Quotes #PodsNBO… Click To Tweet
I approached the Nchuri Ncheke, my dad being one of them, told them to force these people to burry Jelida. In the Ameru culture, sucha a girl who has not given birth is considered a bad omen. ~ @K_thiakunu #EndFGMPodcast Quotes #PodsNBO… Click To Tweet
After I decided to go to court, the family agreed to bury Jelida. This was victory having conquered a culture in Meru county. That Jelida was going to rest in peace. ~ @K_thiakunu #EndFGMPodcast Quotes #PodsNBO Cc: @TonyMwebia… Click To Tweet
Youth Anti FGM Network & FIDA organized a memorial service in honor of Jelida. To tell the world that FGM killed Jelida. We gathered and did a peaceful demonstration in Laare Meru County. ~ @K_thiakunu #EndFGMPodcast Quotes #PodsNBO Cc:… Click To Tweet
FGM is not a one man show you need to work with the reformed circumcisers,custodians of culture, men, religious leaders and council of elders etc. ~ @K_thiakunu #EndFGMPodcast Quotes #PodsNBO Cc: @TonyMwebia @SaropaTimpiyian #EndFGM Click To Tweet
The council of elders allowed us to use their headquarters to raise the monument for Jelida. ~ @K_thiakunu #EndFGMPodcast Quotes #PodsNBO Cc: @TonyMwebia @SaropaTimpiyian #EndFGM Click To Tweet
Most men need to be involved. We need to unveil the myths surrounding FGM. ~ @K_thiakunu #EndFGMPodcast Quotes #PodsNBO Cc: @TonyMwebia @SaropaTimpiyian #EndFGM Click To Tweet
Some people don't know they have been circumcised because it happened when they were very young. ~ @K_thiakunu #EndFGMPodcast Quotes #PodsNBO Cc: @TonyMwebia @SaropaTimpiyian #EndFGM Click To Tweet

According to the World Health Organization, Female genital mutilation (FGM) comprises all procedures that involve partial or total removal of the external female genitalia, or other injuries to the female genital organs for non-medical reasons.

To listen to this podcast on itunes, search for End FGM or click here.
To listen to all podcast episodes here, use the player below.

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  2. Meet Ebony Riddell Bamber Jeremiah Kipainoi 24:23
  3. Meet Abdulmalik Abdi Jeremiah Kipainoi 30:10
  4. Meet Kasiita Mark Jeremiah Kipainoi 28
  5. Meet Caroline Letuya Jeremiah Kipainoi 26:47
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  12. Meet Godfrey Ochieng Jeremiah Kipainoi 33:51
  13. Meet Nimco Ali Jeremiah Kipainoi 15:23
  14. Meet Sadia Hussein (Part 1) Jeremiah Kipainoi 32:32
  15. Meet Sadia Hussein (Part 2) Jeremiah Kipainoi
  16. Meet Dorcas Parit Jeremiah Kipainoi
  17. Meet Samuel Leadismo Jeremiah Kipainoi
  18. Meet Peter Kemei Jeremiah Kipainoi
  19. Meet Gumato Guyo Jeremiah Kipainoi 42:03
  20. Meet Sonyanga Ole Ng'ais Jeremiah Kipainoi 36:20
  21. Meet Brenda Dora Jeremiah Kipainoi 44:19
  22. Meet Antonia Waskowiak Jeremiah Kipainoi 32:17
  23. Meet Catherine Thiakunu Jeremiah Kipainoi 39:36
  24. Meet Ruth Jepchumba Jeremiah Kipainoi 34:59
  25. Meet Tony Mwebia Jeremiah Kipainoi 27:34


Jeremiah Kipainoi is a Communication for Development expert that makes films, transcriptions, podcasts, online strategies, and radio content to end Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) in Kenya, Somalia, Nigeria, Sierra Leone, Guinea, Guinea Bisau, Mali, The Gambia, Senegal, Mauritania, Ethiopia, Eritrea, Djibouti, Liberia, and tackles climate change through resilience building, and championing for community-led development.

This Post Has 11 Comments

  1. Catherine

    Good work

  2. Catherine

    Excellent work

  3. P Kemei

    I call her the Meru Iron lady. When it comes to passionate fight against FGm, especially among the Eastern Kenya communities, Cate is the scale for measuring it. I hope we join hands in eliminating the vice in the Kenya. Good insight and great job Jerry

  4. Melissa

    Equality advocates for a world where women and girls are in control of their bodies. The manner in which you are calling for increased and concerted efforts against FGM is truly inspiring!

  5. Mathew

    Wonderful work

  6. Oscar Toyianka

    Great job Jeremiah

  7. Mathew

    Noble course bro we need to change the people mindset on FGM

  8. Kang

    Catherine’s account on Jelida’s story and other cases is very touching. She is making great steps to increase awareness on the atrocities that befall women who have undergone FGM. The interviewer is up close & candid, which provokes a comprehensive discussion on a really insightful topic. Salute!

  9. Jessey

    Thank you for shedding a light on a dark topic Jeremiah. Your interview process of the field operators offers invaluable perspectives and insights on the critical topic of FGM related issues.

  10. Moses Letitoyia

    Men are crucial in the fight against FGM.

  11. Ruth

    Wonderful work done

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