Top 100 Kenyans 2021: Girl Child Champion Recognised by Obama Eyeing Political Seat
A Kenyan woman internationally famed for her efforts in championing for the rights and welfare of women seeks to extend her helping hand to her county.
Josephine Kulea, who has on several occasions been recognised by former US President, Barrack Obama, for her unparalleled contribution towards the development of the girl child, has declared interest in the position of Samburu Woman Representative.
She hopes to unseat incumbent, Maison Leshoomo, in the August 9, 2022, General Election.
Kulea first gained prominence in 2012 when she, through her Samburu Girls Foundation, managed to rescue hundreds of girls from Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) and early marriage.
A victim of early marriage herself, Kulea embarked on a quest to challenge practices that were deeply rooted in the cultures of most communities in Northern part of Kenya and as expected, she faced a lot of criticism and resistance from the residents.
Today, Josephine has rescued over 1,200 girls and through her organization, she has supported over 400 girls from primary school through university.
Her efforts received recognition both locally and beyond the Kenyan borders. Locally, she was awarded the Head of State Commendation (HSC) in 2012.
Kulea was named Inspiring Woman by the National Gender Equality Commission (NGEC) in 2014. She scooped the 2015 Egerton University Gender award and was named among the Top 40 Under 40 Women Award in 2016.
Some of her international recognitions include UN Person of the Year 2013, YALI Washington Fellow 2014, Equality City University of New York Award 2016 and Acumen East Africa Fellow 2013, and African Union Youth Hero 2015.
Other awards include: Unsung Hero 2011, COVAW champion 2013, Inspiring Woman by Gender commission Kenya 2014, , Spark Changemaker 2015, Vital Voices Lead Program 2015, ,Egerton university gender award 2015, Humanitarian Award 2017 by Kenya Women, Children Wellness Center and Voice for Girls Award 2018.
In 2015, as the 44th President of the United States, Barack Obama while giving a speech at the Kasarani Stadium, recognised the efforts of the activists and lauded her for providing education to girls in her community.