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Vagina Warrior Agnes Pareyio Named the United Nations in Kenya Person of the Year


Originally published in:
The Standard
10/24/2005

Vagina Warrior/Creator of the first V-Day Safe House for the Girls Agnes Pareyio was named the United Nations in Kenya Person of the Year today. Please join us in congratulating Agnes for her amazing achievements and her work to end violence against women in girls.
To read more about the V-Day Safe House in Kenya, which Agnes created,
click here.

UN honours Kenyan woman for fight against ‘cut’, early marriages
By Judy Ogutu

The United Nations has honoured a Kenyan for her efforts to save girls from Female Genital Mutilation and early marriages.

Mrs Agnes Pareyio is the United Nations in Kenya Person of the Year, a title she earned for her contribution towards achieving the Millennium Development Goals.

The recognition coincides with the UN’s 60th anniversary celebrations today.

Pareyio is the co-ordinator of Tasaru Ntomonok Initiative (TNI), a community-based organisation in Narok District.

MDGs are a set of development targets, which all UN member states have pledged to meet by 2015. One of the goals is to promote gender equality and empowerment of women.

TNI has helped girls who have chosen not to undergo circumcision and early marriage, to continue with their education.

Currently, Pareyio is facilitating the design of sustainable mechanisms for eliminating the female rite.

She also provides rehabilitation for FGM victims as well as sensitising and mobilising religious groups to join her crusade.

The former councillor and Maendeleo ya Wanawake branch official started her campaign five years ago.

"She walked from village to village, sensitising the community on the dangers of female circumcision and advocating for an alternative rite of passage," says a press statement from the UN information office.

Her contributions have led to girls delaying early sexual activity, thus avoiding pregnancies and sexually transmitted diseases.

Dr Klaus Toepfer, director-general of UN offices in Nairobi and executive director of Unep, will present Pareyio with a commemorative plaque.