Kenyan Tribeswoman Speaks About Overcoming Educational Barriers at Kent State East LiverpoolPosted Oct. 24, 2011
Alice Lasoi, a Maasai tribeswoman from Kenya and chair of the Fund for the Education of Women in Africa (FEWA), will speak at Kent State University at East Liverpool about education for Maasai women in Africa.The program is free and open to the public.
Lasoi will discuss her own experiences and those of other women when she presents a talk, “Overcoming Barriers to Education as a Maasai Woman in Africa,” on Thursday,
Oct. 27, at 6:30 p.m. She will speak in the videoconferencing room in the Mary Patterson Building at Kent State East Liverpool, East 4th Street, East Liverpool.
Lasoi whose culture in Kenya privileges males, did not dream that she would become an inspiration to other Maasai women. Yet her example and the funds she raises help her tribeswomen to gain an education. The community-based organization, FEWA, raises money to pay for Kenyan girls’ education and to encourage girls to stay in school.
Lasoi’s education has been hard earned. She was married by her family to an older man for a dowry of six cows, and found herself in an abusive relationship. After a severe beating, she left her husband and returned to her parent’s home where she miscarried her fourth child. Lasoi petitioned the tribal council for a divorce, which was finally granted after four years.
To achieve a better life, Lasoi returned to school. She began her day’s work by milking cows at 5:30, carrying 30 gallons of water on her back from a river three miles away, preparing breakfast for 19, and then walking the two miles to school two hours before classes began so that she could complete her homework.
Handmade jewelry and artwork will be on sale at the program. Sales benefit FEWA. Donations for women’s education can also be made on the organization website at www.educateafricanwomen.org.
Lasoi’s visit is sponsored by Kent State East Liverpool’s Diversity Committee, the Office of the Dean and the Women’s Studies Program at Kent State East Liverpool.