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Let Girls Lead Video Contest: Emmanuela Alimlim

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Emmanuela Alimlim, 20
Archer's Post, Kenya

Emmanuela Alimlim is from Kenya. Her mother gave birth to her at age 15 and Emmanuela's sister gave birth to her first child at age 15 as well. After seeing several of her classmates drop out of school due to early pregnancies, Emmanuela decided that it was time to do something about early and forced marriage and teen pregnancy in her community. She decided to educate herself about the challenges and barriers that adolescent girls face in her community and empower those girls to lead change.

In this video entry, Emmanuela describes her role as a community leader. She started a girls' club called "Students Empowering Girls in Africa." The club raises money to buy sanitary supplies for girls and distribute them to schools in their region. The club also empowers adolescent girls to follow their dreams of education. Emmanuela is starting her own foundation called "Our Community for Better Life." Her dream is to give girls a chance for a better life, regardless of the challenging backgrounds they come from. Emmanuela believes that education is the key for long lasting change.

Emmanuela's Story: Hello everyone, my name is Emmanuela Alimlim, I am 20 years old and I am from Kenya. The most challenging things affecting girls in my community is early and forced marriages, female genital mutilation and teenage pregnancy. I will say that because my mother gave birth to me when she was only 15 years old. My sister gave birth to a baby boy when she was only 15 years old. My friends and my schoolmates, they all dropped out of school. Being the only girl who got a chance to go to the university, I said I have a role to play to help my community, to help the girls who are still growing up. And that is why I came up with a girls' club in school which is called "Students Empowering Girls in Africa." The most [important] thing we do in the club is to get funds and also empower girls. With the funds we get we buy sanitary towels, underwear, and we take and distribute it to different schools in my community. The empowerment we do is from one school to another; even if the school is located in inaccessible area, we do the empowerment there.

I am also a speaker in many functions with an organization which is called "Because I am a Girl." I walk throughout the different regions in Kenya to talk to girls about the importance of being an educated girl, even if you are coming from a very challenging background, you have to be strong in order to be a girl who will help the future. I am also now launching a foundation, my own foundation which is called "Our Community for Better Life" which will mostly focus on empowerment of girls, especially girls who dropped out of school. We want to give them another chance for them to better their lives and be better people in future. Thank you!

Let Girls Lead empowers girls and their allies to lead social change through advocacy, education, economic empowerment, storytelling and strategic partnerships, contributing to improved health, education, and livelihoods for more than 3 million girls globally.

Let Girls Lead's Global Girls' Conversation video contest highlights girls' power to create change by sharing their own solutions through short videos. The video contest is an exciting opportunity for girls, organizations working with girls and girls' allies to submit one to two-minute videos capturing girls' solutions and successes. In partnership with The Huffington Post, Let Girls Lead will feature these compelling videos on the Global Girls' Conversation interactive platform and on Huffington Post's Global Motherhood column, sharing girls' power to lead change with a global audience. Contest winners will receive $10,000 in cash, equipment, and training to create their own short films. For more information, please visit here.