During yesterday’s World Commonwealth Day Big Lunch reception, Golda Ayodo was presented with the Kenyan Points of Light award by the UK High Commissioner to Kenya, Nic Hailey.
Golda is the founder of ‘Golden Girls Foundation’ which distributes free menstrual cups to young women in Western Kenyan communities.
With 40 per cent of girls missing school in Kenya due to their period, in 2013 Golda decided to partner with ‘Ruby Cup’, a company that donates a menstrual cup to a girl in Africa for every one of the products sold in Europe. The ‘Golden Girls Foundation’ distributed over 6,000 cups, ensuring that the recipients were able to attend school. Golda has also established a mentoring scheme in which 100 female volunteers mentor over 500 girls and encourage them to attend school and gain skills and training.
Happy #CommonwealthBigLunch Kenya! A tent full #OurCommonwealth family celebrating HM the Queen's "Point of Light" awardee, the inspirational Golda Ayodo: empowering young women to stay in school pic.twitter.com/D0ao5yuK9T
— Susie Kitchens (@SusieKitchens) March 12, 2018
Speaking about her award, Golda said: “It is with great honor and privilege that I accept the Points of Light Award, offered to me by Her Majesty The Queen as the Head of the Commonwealth. In humility I receive this award on behalf of all the amazing women who volunteer to mentor girls and women to better their lives. ‘Golden Girls Foundation’ works to empower girls and women by linking them to opportunities that enhance their chances of success. With ‘Ruby Cup’, we are on a mission to equip 20,000 needy school girls with free menstrual Ruby cups to ensure the girls stay in school during their periods. So far, 10,000 girls have benefited from this initiative. Like a candle, this Points of Light award will always shine out for volunteers working to change the lives of girls and women, one at a time.”
UK High Commissioner to Kenya, Nic Hailey added: “I’m delighted that Golda Ayodo has been awarded the Commonwealth Points of Light Award for Kenya, for her work to promote women and girls empowerment through the ‘Golden Girls Foundation’. Girls’ education is a major priority for the UK government, and Golda has played an inspirational role in encouraging Kenyan girls to finish school. As a result of her work on menstrual hygiene, thousands of menstrual cups have been distributed across Western Kenya to ensure that those girls stay at school throughout the month. She has also played a major role in helping women access livelihood opportunities so that their own children can finish school. Golda and her ‘Golden Girls’ are truly role models for us all.”
Today we celebrated our shared values & our diverse people, cultures & food at a #CommonwealthBigLunch
— UK in Kenya (@UKinKenya) March 12, 2018
Commonwealth Points of Light Awards 2018
Through the awards, Her Majesty The Queen, as head of the Commonwealth, is thanking inspirational volunteers across the 53 Commonwealth nations for the difference they are making in their communities and beyond.
One outstanding volunteer from each of these countries will be recognised with a Commonwealth Points of Light award running up to the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) in April.