Breaking the Silence

Our Breaking the Silence Program uses football to break the silence on female genital mutilation (FGM), menstruation, gender-based violence, conflict, girls rights, HIV/AIDs, and other issues that affect girls and boys. We offer them a voice through the development of skills that will help them to progress and beat these challenges.

We currently have two main projects that fall under this program:

Shoot To Score for Peace and Gender Equality

We use football sessions to provide girls and boys with equal opportunities to play football on safe spaces, fostering peace through weekly football sessions while showcasing the power of football to bridge ethnic divides. The project also educates participants on gender equality topics. A number of approaches are used in this project:

  • Weekly football sessions for girls and boys, delivered by trained coaches and peer educators
  • Football leagues and annual football tournaments for young girls and boys
  • Provision of balls and other football equipment to participants and the repair of some of the football pitches used in the project

Sport on the Cutting Edge

Our Sport on the Cutting Edge project aims to end female genital mutilation in Marsabit. FGM is highly prevalent in northern Kenya, with UNICEF putting the prevalence rate at 98% in some areas.

FGM is responsible for many harmful effects, including infections, painful urination and menstruation, keloids, sexual health problems, childbirth complications, fistula, perinatal risks and mental health problems.

To progress towards the end of FGM in Marsabit, we use the following approaches:

  • Weekly football and life skills sessions to adolescent girls, delivered by trained coaches
  • Training of traditional circumcisers on the dangers of FGM and providing them with financial literacy courses and support to earn alternative income
  • Workshops and provision of information materials on the dangers of FGM for community leaders such as religious leaders and chiefs 

Support for Our Breaking the Silence Program

HODI is grateful to the FIFA Foundation, Women Win, Comic Relief and GlobalGiving for their support of our Breaking The Silence Program.