The Institute for Faith and Gender Empowerment (IFAGE) was initially registered as Ekklesia Foundation for Gender Education in 2013, and in 2019, the name was changed to: “Institute for Faith and Gender Empowerment” to reflect new realities and the need to scale up its impact across Africa.
The idea behind IFAGE on “faith and gender justice” was conceived by the Reverend Domnic Misolo, an Anglican priest from Kenya, after reading academic journals from Christians for Biblical Equality (CBE International) during his theological/seminary education at St. Paul’s University in Limuru, Kenya.
The Reverend Misolo’s personal and in-depth research on the topic of gender justice completely changed his attitude and worldview regarding women and the role of a faith community in advancing equality and justice for women and girls in any society.
IFAGE’s main objective was, and still is, to harness the potential of faith groups, and other traditional actors in addressing sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV) in the African context by challenging structures and systems of patriarchy, poverty, and violence against women and girls simply because they are born females.
Since then, IFAGE has been at the forefront of challenging retrogressive social, religious, and political structures in the society through advocating for gender justice, equality, and women’s empowerment.
Awareness and advocacy about these topics has been raised through training and engaging men and traditional leaders on gender based violence, planning and hosting annual Pan-African faith leaders conferences on gender reconciliation, and training youths on sexuality and reproductive health in order to end/reduce teenage pregnancy, early/child marriages, and female genital mutilation
The Reverend Misolo, who asked to be relieved by the bishop from full time responsibility as a church priest, has dedicated his life and ministry to empower communities in Africa with knowledge and skills regarding gender justice and equality.
Read more on how the Rev. Misolo was led on the path of gender justice and equality. https://www.cbeinternational.org/blogs/leader-kenya-shares-how-he-became-egalitarian
Key Milestones & Impact
IFAGE achievements to date include:
Male champions trained
We have trained 8,000 men as male champions and trainers on positive/transformative masculinities to end gender based violence.
These male champions have further trained more than 60,000 other men and traditional leaders in churches and local community meetings.
Key faith leaders equipped
Through the Pan-African Faith Leaders Conferences (hosted twice in Kenya, and once in Uganda, Tanzania, and Rwanda), IFAGE trained 12,000 key faith leaders from across Africa on faith and gender reconciliation; including biblical gender theology, gender mainstreaming and policy analysis, faith response to sexual and reproductive health, and the role of faith leaders in promoting equality and justice in order to end gender based violence.
Peer mentors trained
IFAGE has also trained 18,000 adolescents, youths and young mothers as peer mentors on sexuality and reproductive health education.
Peer mentors further trained more than 80,000 adolescents, youths, and young mothers on sexual and reproductive health in schools, churches and local community meetings, addressing increasing cases of teenage pregnancy, female genital cutting, early/child marriages, and sexually transmitted diseases including HIV & Aids and SRH services.
The Girl Child & Her Long Walk to Freedom
On the “The Girl Child & Her Long Walk to Freedom” leadership program, a joint project of Imago Dei Fund and IFAGE, about 240 participants were involved in the reading journey from more than 15 countries. 13 faith-inspired change agents who were involved in the fellowship program graduated. Three translations and cultural adaptations of the Girl Child Video were produced in conjunction with Tear-fund and other local contractors (Burmese, Hausa, and French). The Spanish translation of the video has also been completed.
The Girl Child & Her Long Walk to Freedom also launched the “Courageous Conversations” series, designed to highlight issues critical to addressing gender equality in faith-based circles and beyond. Two conversations were held in 2021. We leverage the Courageous Conversations to nurture male allies and discussions of male programming and engagement in faith-inspired gender equality initiatives.
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Our programs making the case for the girl child are done in proud partnership with the following organizations:
Shalom House & Estate, Bondo
Opposite Sura View Hotel, Bondo
P. O. Box 417 - 40601, Bondo Kenya