Elizabeth Nyaruai

Elizabeth Nyaruai is the first African female police officer, and one of the first women to join the Scouting movement. Her year of birth is estimated to be 1917.

The mother of four served in the force for five years, leaving in 1956 at the height of the Mau Mau war after she was suspected of involvement in the outlawed communal oathing.

Her journey to the police force began thus: In 1951, she had just finished secondary school and teacher training at Gateiguru Secondary in Mugoiri, Murang’a, and had been posted to teach at Ngorano Primary School in Mathira.

She and her colleagues saw a Kenya Police advert for female police recruits as they read a newspaper during tea break. Many months after she wrote an application, five white police officers arrived at the school in a Land Rover to pick her up for training.

Indeed, Nyaruai wears many hats, but she is most proud of her long involvement in the Scouting movement which she joined at age 10, even having the opportunity to meet the founder of the movement, Lord Baden-Powell.

Her love of the movement motivated her to donate two acres out of her 89-acre parcel of land, to the Kenya Scouts and Girl Guides Association two decades ago.

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