You are currently viewing Impact Measurement: Case Study: Esnahs Nyaramba – Kisii & Nyamira 

Impact Measurement: Case Study: Esnahs Nyaramba – Kisii & Nyamira 

In this report, we will zoom in on the work that end-FGM campaigner Esnahs Nyramba has been doing over the December – January period. A time where FGM is rampant in these regions. Her work has had many challenges including the struggle to find safe homes for girls as well as fighting pneumonia in January since her work often requires her to regularly be outside out waiting in the cold to ambush planned FGM gatherings and save girls. Esnahs is now well again and continues to thrive in the campaign against FGM in Kisii and Nyamira counties.

Villages Esnahs covered: Kisii: Raganga, Itumbe, Kiogoro, Kiobegi, Rinia,
Nyamira: Esanai, Kebirigo, Ibibira
11 arrests (made due to raids and catching cutters in the act.)
61 girls saved from FGM -( 11 girls: given safe houses, 50 girls: saved by interventions where parents or guardians agreed not to cut their girl child.)

Our Strategy: Bring down the local FGM clinics and make arrests, save as many girls as possible.

This time around we have adapted the way we work and chose to engage the Community Policy. The Community Policy is part of the security personnel on the ground. People fear them so it worked well to have them on the team. We also engaged the local media more – we were very grateful that they gave us a chance to achieve now and then pay for air time later. The intervention and engagements helped us reach more.

I had time with Community Safety Officers (CSOs) and health volunteers – training them – telling them why they need to say no to being involved in FGM the health officers helped us reach more people and stop FGM cases. In these regions the clinical officers are known to be the ones that are performing FGM on girls.

“Clinical officers in these regions often perform FGM behind the curtain… going to the homes after work and do it without anyone knowing.”

Esnahs Nyaramba

December 1st – January 17th

  • 4 girls from Nyamira were saved from FGM and taken to a safe house
  • 7 girls are safe from FGM and are staying with Esnahs – 4 girls from Kuria, 2 girls from Narok county, and 1 girl from kiissi – aged 11 to 14
  • From Kissi County – An 8 months old baby and a 2-month-old-baby were saved from FGM – they were given to guardians that signed to say they will not cut the babies

Kisii county:

“All FGM cases take place either very are early morning or late evening when the ‘blood is cold’ to avoid proof of FGM. So we usually are up very early, waiting in the cold to ambush the initiations.”

Esnahs Nyaramba

4th December – 2 nurses: reprehended – arrested – this case is ongoing as they have been cutting a lot of girls. – 3 girls were saved just before the arrests were made.

4th December – Raganga – saved 4 girls – they were brought to live in a safe house with a Pasteur. The cutter was not arrested as we could not find her.

6th December – Ragange Magenche – retired nurse and husband is a medical consultant – she hid under that umbrella but really is performing a lot of FGM on girls – 8 girls were saved including a 3 and ½ year old and a 18-month-old baby – no arrests made but the clinic has been closed down.

11th-17th December – Itumbe – the nurse had three clinics and has been cutting girls the whole time – we managed to close it down and arrested one parent and nurse, and saved two children by taking them to a safe house. The cutter had run away. 3 clinics were all closed down.

“We have a new county Commissioner who ensures that each person that is arrested pays a fine as well as has to do probation work: they will do sensitisation work to help end FGM, this is all overseen by the county commissioner”

Esnahs Nyaramba

25th December – 1st January – Kiogoro – 7 different cases – 14 girls – saved all except one – the grandad cut her and was found dead 4 days later.

5th January – Kiobegi – 2 girls rescued

5th January – Rinia – 2 girls rescued – given safe home with their aunt

Nyemira county:

17th December – Kebirigo – 2 clinics were closed down – one woman ran away but 6 employees in 2 clinics including the FGM cutters were caught and are now doing community work to end FGM overseen by the county comissioner.

21st December – Ibibira – community police arrested a woman – and saved 2 girls who were 4, and 17 months old from their grandma

Larger Raids: 16th, 23rd, 27th of December:

  • Nyemifra County – raids – 9 girls saved – they now have a safe place with their aunty
  • 12th December – Esanai – retired nurse arrested on the way to cutting – handed over to police – probation – has to do end FGM work now and she is being monitored closely.
Esnahs now has a full house… her two bedroom house is a home to 17 children. All saved from FGM

Esnahs is looking for a place for 3 more girls as the granny wants to cut them and stressed the need for a safe house.

“In this region, we don’t have any safe houses. I am looking forward to seeing how I can get a safe house. The biggest challenge is looking after the girls… I also had pneumonia over the holidays.”

Esnahs Nyaramba

I asked Esnahs why… And she replied…

“We often were getting on motorbikes at 3 AM driving across the land to somewhere to wait in the cold until they arrive and then we ambush the FGM initiations.”

Esnahs Nyaramba

Esnahs has adopted 17 girls who all live with her, most of the girls were in very vulnerable situations and were not safe to be at home.

“My house accommodates 17, and I have had some girls since 2021. So my is full. It’s a two-bedroom house.”

Esnahs Nyaramba

Total Arrests = 11

4 cutters – nurses – clinical
6 parents
1 Grandmother

Ruth Harley

Ruth Harley is working with GMC as a Website News Editor, compiling stories written by End FGM campaigners working with the Global Media Campaign to End FGM across Africa. Alongside this work, she is running The Women’s Vinyl Project which empowers women and girls through singing and music and is helping to end FGM.