The Kechie’s Project, Empowerment of Women




October 11 is the International day of the Girl Child. Nkechi Ogbodo, President and founder of the Kechie’s Project, is a Nigerian born activist working towards the empowerment of women to become world leaders.

Ogbodo was born in Africa and given the name “Nkechi,” which means, “This is God’s own.” This name, according to Ogbodo, empowered her to think differently than the norm. Her father firmly believed in education for his children, which set Ogbodo’s foundation for a better life.

In Nigeria, women have little value. They are second class compared to men. Abortion is illegal, they have no leverage in politics and their values and traditions are very different compared to western society. They are little educated and are rarely given the opportunity to thrive.

Via Facebook/Nkechi Ogbodo
Via Facebook/Nkechi Ogbodo

In a recent Facebook post, Ogbodo writes a letter to world leaders about her organization and her fight to educate women to end poverty in Africa.

“The global appeal for the empowerment of women and girls has become a movement that should no longer be ignored by world leaders, especially African leaders. When you engage young girls and educate them, you are helping them to get out of poverty. You are helping them to make better choices with their lives and provide a better future for their own children. When you educate and empower a girl, you empower the future and help lift a generation out of the cycle of poverty.”

Last April more than 200 girls, attending Chibok boarding school were abducted by Boko Haram fighters. Word of this outrage spread even to the furthest corners of the world and demanded one thing, #BringBackOurGirls!

“Where are our girls? What really happened to them? How are they coping? How can we celebrate without them? What efforts are we making and are being taken by world leaders and the world community to find these girls? How can the world move on without finding our girls?”

Ogbodo is close with this issue as her 68-year-old mother was kidnapped in 2011 and held for ransom. She was held for two months and upon her return she was traumatized by the life-shattering endeavor. Ogbodo lost her father shortly after.

She goes on to honor, Malala Yousafzai, journalist and winner of the Nobel Peace Prize. Yousafzai has been living in the UK after two years ago; Taliban militants shot her in the head after supporting education for women. She will remain there for several more years as her safety is in concern.

What many take for granted in the west, is deprived of many women and it’s not only education. In America, we have the freedom to speak our minds, we have the right to state how we feel and allow others to listen without fear of oppression or assassinations.

“With the opportunity that I had living in the United States of America, I realize that there are many girls around the world who don’t have the same prospects. The access to education and the freedom of expression and opinion without persecution—even when disagreeing with a popular belief—are basic human rights that most women and girls in some parts of the world do not have.”

She continues,

“America lets you be who you are without judging you. America lets you be an independent thinker from day one. America lets you voice your opinion and be respected for it. Nigeria gave me the foundation of who I am, but it is America that perfected it. The freedom that I have found in America, the freedom to believe in myself, to express my views, to stand up for what I believe in without fear or favor is more important than anything else. That freedom that I have found, I cherish and I will use it to address any form of injustice against women, girls and all.”

The power of voice is stronger than ever. With social media, one voice can be heard by millions almost instantly. Actions need to be taken in order to achieve a better future, not only for women in Nigeria but also for women everywhere. Those who do have a voice must speak for those who are too frightened to believe in themselves. Our voices are our strongest attribute as well as our education that has provided our knowledgeable opinions. Western women would not possess what they have without education and it’s time to promote education for others and empower them to be more.

For more information about the Kechie’s Project, please click here.

For more information on Nkechi Ogbodo, please click here.


Photo via Facebook/Nkechi Ogbodo

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