A brave hero for girls and women

Her name is Theresa Kachindamoto, and she’s the senior chief of the Dedza District in the tiny nation of Malawi.  As one of the few women with real political power in Africa, she is taking a brave stance against child marriage and her nation’s horrific record of sexual abuse of females. She has single-handedly raised the age of consent in the region from 14 to 18, annulled around 850 child marriages (affording the girls forced into those situations an opportunity to return to school) and done much to abolish the so-called “cleansing” rituals where little girls—some as young as six or seven—are often taught how to please a man sexually and are sometimes initiated into sex during the ceremonies.  Needless to say, Kachindamoto has faced a lot of opposition from the more traditional members of her community, including receiving death threats, but she hasn’t let that deter her from making sure these girls get the chance to grow up and have a shot at a good life without being forced to marry long before they understand what they’re getting into.  So a big kudos to Miss Kachindamoto for what she’s doing to empower females in Malawi.  What an amazing woman!

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