ASIKE – A name with a symbolic meaning
In Oromo culture, the siiqqee is a traditional tool of women’s Empowerment.
A Siiqqee is a carved stick traditionally given to women of the Oromo peoples of Ethiopia on the day of their wedding, a tradition that has mostly disappeared today. It symbolized the importance of their role in the household. As this symbol, it clearly embodied the respect due a wife and mother. If or when a married woman ever had difficulties with her husband, she could take this Siiqqee and walk out into the village streets. Other women, upon seeing her, would take their own Siiqqees and join her at a rallying place. There they would wait until the men in the village came to find them and the issue was resolved. Thus siiqqee is a symbolic regulator of a healthy and balanced relationship of power between female and male Oromo for as long as they live. Siiqqee is involved with all the activities of life, not of death. In this way, the term Siiqqee can only embody the respect owed women.
It is the ideal symbol for the work undertaken by African Sisters for Information, Knowledge and Empowerment or ASIKE.
African Sisters for Information, Knowledge and Empowerment (ASIKE), grew out of a unified objective to empower women of African descent in metro-Atlanta. ASIKE was established in March of 2005 with a mission to redefine the image of the African woman by empowering women of African descent through education, information, advocacy and sisterhood.
Currently uniting women from:
- Cote d’Ivoire (Ivory Coast)
- Democratic Republic of Congo
- Guinea (Conakry)
- Sierra Leone
- United States of America
- US Virgin Island
Annually, we offer a different combination of the following events:
- S-A-C Signature event with a goal of educating our community while raising funds for our Sponsor-A-Child (S-A-C) program
- Health fair/day
- Conversations – educational/professional seminars
- 2017 – Operating Atlanta Braves Concession Stand (Fundraiser)
- 2016 – Launched Education Fund, awarding $500+
- 2016 – Election prep by representative from New Georgia Project
- 2015 – Hosted Marguerite “Maggy” Barankitse, founder of Maison Shalom (haven for children), 2016 Aurora Prize winner
- 2014 – March – Partnered with the International Women’s Think Tank to celebrate International Women’s day
- 2008 – Successful ASIKE Conversations – Gathering of Sister Leaders of African Descent
- 2008 – Non-profit capacity building and Cultural Translation Seminars for the African Atlanta community, in partnership with the Decatur Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority
- 2007 March – Hosted Her Excellency Dr. Faida Mitifu, Ambassador of the Democratic Republic of Congo as Guest of honor at our Inaugural Banquet
- 2006 August – Hosted a reception for Her Excellency, First Lady of Cape Verde