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Police Commissioner 'bowled over' to join Maasai cricket team for African farming event

Cricket fever will descend on Newark at the weekend as the legendary Maasai Cricket Warriors join forces with Nottinghamshire Police and Crime Commissioner Paddy Tipping to raise awareness of FGM and ‘honour’ based abuse.

Hosted by local charity the Mojatu Foundation, and Nottingham Trent University, the Warriors will be visiting Nottinghamshire between August 15 and September 2 to take part in a host of activities to promote awareness of serious cultural issues affecting girls and women including female genital mutilation (FGM), ‘honour’ based violence, forced marriage, hate crime and modern day slavery as well as lend their support to the End FGM campaign.

The team will attend the African Farm Festival on Saturday 18 August at Screveton, near Newark, where they will engage the PCC in a little cricket practice before he returns to the site of the tree he planted three years ago as part of the foundation’s TreesAgainstFGM project.

The festival is attended by people from across Nottinghamshire as well as survivors of FGM and their families as part of their continued recovery.

Mr Tipping, who has provided funding to a number of organisations to tackle hate crime, gender inequality and violence, said: “I’m really excited to be meeting the Maasai Cricket Warriors for this hugely important awareness event although I’m not so confident about sharing my cricket skills – or rather lack of them - with the wider public!

“The Warriors do a fantastic job of fighting all sorts of social injustices and have utilised their international status to promote gender equality, tackle FGM, forced marriages as well as ensuring HIV & AIDs and conservation issues remain top of the agenda.

“I would like to congratulate the Mojatu Foundation and Nottingham Trent University for securing the team’s support for our locally-based work fighting violence against women and girls and giving vulnerable girls and women the confidence to come forward and seek the help and support that is available.”

Formed in 2007, the Maasai Cricket Warriors use their fame and love for cricket to educate communities on social justice, promote their home country and culture of Kenya and give young people hope through their community and school visits.

The Warriors play in their traditional clothing and are famous for drawing on their skills of spear throwing and using a shield to bat and bowl.

During their tour of Nottingham, the Warriors will visit cricket matches and festivals, film screenings and Q&A sessions as well as a fashion show and cultural events.

Valentine Nkoyo, lead tour organiser and CEO of Mojatu Foundation, said: “It has been my dream for four years now to bring this team from my Maasai community to the UK for a series of activities, community events and to facilitate cultural exchange in the UK.

“We are very pleased that this is becoming a reality and we are very grateful to all our partners and sponsors. The team is really changing attitudes of male dominated communities to value girls’ and women’s rights while advocating for gender equality and we hope to have a legacy. This is a great moment not only for Kenyans but all communities.

“We are very grateful for the continued support from the Office of the PCC and we are proud that our community engagement has been recognised by global bodies including the UN and Women Federation for World Peace International.” 

In 2016 Mojatu Foundation was instrumental in getting Nottingham City to declare Zero Tolerance to FGM (Female Genital Mutilation), the first city in UK and Europe to officially do so.

To donate to support the cause, please follow this link- https://www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/valentine-nkoyo?utm_term=96Vp5Z7vD.

Find details of events and sponsorship on the tour website  www.maasaicricket.com.



Media Enquiries:    Sallie Blair - 01283 821012 / 07702 541401



Posted on Tuesday 14th August 2018
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