Marsabit County has poverty rate of 92% compared to national average of 46% with nomadic pastoralism being the main economic driver (80%) of the County. Women and children are left deprived due to social-cultural role played by men in Marsabit communities as custodians of family resources. Women in Marsabit County makes 48%, (140,054) of the total population . However, over 80% of generated family resources are under control of men in Marsabit Communities. Cultural barriers and taboos are cited as impediment in women taking up semi-skilled and unskilled jobs including ‘boda-boda’ business, which is fully controlled by male youth and men. The Intersectionality of these factors have led to poor economic and health status for women in Marsabit County with maternal deaths at 1127/100,000 live births being 4th highest in Kenya. Lack of resources and limited access to family wealth removes women from decision making in society especially among the nomadic pastoralist communities of Marsabit County. Lack of life skills among young women (10-19 years) predisposes them to early marriage, forced marriage and teenage pregnancy perpetuating cycle of Lack of life skills among young women (10-19 years) predisposes them to early marriage, forced marriage and teenage pregnancy perpetuating cycle of poverty. Younger women, women among the nomadic pastoralist groups and those in lower economic bracket are more susceptible to poverty, lack of employment opportunities and health risks in Marsabit County.
The above findings gave birth to “Leading girls of Legacy Project.” In Partnership with E-mentoring Africa and County Government of Marsabit Department of youth and Sports. Amen Organized a county youth forum targeting 120 youths from all the four Subcouties of Marsabit. The two-day workshop entailed series of discussion and dialogues with Youth and County Leaders from department of youth and sports.