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Wednesday, 12 September 2018 06:44

Flora's passion for adolescent financial empowerment

Written by Hannah Njoki and Diana Gatwiri
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Flora at the school resource centre/ library at Gatoto Community Primary School Flora at the school resource centre/ library at Gatoto Community Primary School Hannah Njoki

Flora is a very eloquent and confident girl in class 6 at Gatoto Community Primary School. She is an in- school beneficiary of the Adolescent Empowerment Programme (AEP) initiative implemented by CARE in Kenya in partnership with HOPE worldwide Kenya (HWWK) in Mukuru informal settlement, Nairobi. Flora is 11 years of age and a 3rd born in a family of three. She dreams of being an actress when she completes her studies.

Flora is an active member of life worriers AEP group comprising of 20 members. She opened a Smarta savings account on 10th of April, 2018 with Post Bank and started saving individually.

“The most interesting AEP session I ever attended was on savings and that is how I learnt about saving. This really motivated me to open an account and start saving on my own. I started saving because of the challenges I have been facing with my family. Living in Mukuru informal settlement can be very challenging,” narrated Flora.

Flora had managed to save KES 1,250 but withdrew KES 500 during an emergency to contribute to her 3 year old cousin's medical bill leaving her with a total of KES 750. Flora says that she does not regret using her money to settle her cousin’s medical bill because the reason why she started saving is to be at a position to deal with such challenges. She saves KES 50 weekly from her pocket money.

Flora is also a health club official, a Minister of Health in her schools' student government and a very resourceful and reliable pupil in her school. She attributes the support she has received from both her teachers at school and her parents at home, coupled with the AEP training sessions she has gone though so far as her main source of strength and encouragement for her achievements.

“I feel more responsible and I am leading a better life now than before. I am so proud of myself because I can now,with the help of my parents, manage my own bank account, buy myself a few school supplies as well help with some small family needs without always depending on my parents,” exclaimed Flora.

 Flora has been an ambassador of the AEP programme. She represented her peers at the child friendly account breakfast meeting that was organized by CARE in Kenya in Nairobi on 24th April, 2018 and also attended other forums with Post Bank. This also has really motivated her to continue working hard and become a great person in this country like the people she interacted with in these forums.

Flora championing financial inclusion of adolescents by financial institutions during a breakfast meeting organized by CARE in Kenya.

She has become a mentor and a source of inspiration to her peers by encouraging them to join AEP groups so that they can learn how to save.

”I have mentored three of my friends and they have also started saving. I mostly encourage girls to start saving so that they can be able to deal with the challenge of buying sanitary towels. Emergencies that arise unexpectedly due to financial constrains facing people living in the informal settlements require one to always be prepared by saving for the future,” concluded a confident Flora.

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Read 45 times Last modified on Wednesday, 12 September 2018 07:41
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