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Gender discrimination is recognized by Kenya's government and other organizations as the number one cause of persistent poverty among the Maasai, causing a higher than average rate of illiteracy, as well as preventing economic development in the area. Government agency reports also attribute illiteracy among women as the primary cause of malnutrition and poor health in the area.
The widespread benefits to societies of educating women are well-documented. This is true in every culture, worldwide. This is true in Kenya. This is true in Kenya's Kajiado County, where two-thirds of its Maasai population live.
The economic, cultural and physical factors that combine to deny education to Maasai girls in Kenya are numerous and, taken together, almost impossible for all but the most determined girls to overcome.
MGEF has developed a comprehensive strategy to get more girls enrolled in school and to keep them in school until they have the knowledge and skills to enter the workforce in Kenya.