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Community Outreach Program

The James R. Foundation International in conjunction with USAID and GOK has partnered with the Kenya Women & Children’s Wellness Centre (KWCWC) in promoting equity and excellence in health care for Kenya’s Women and Children, with special focus on those from the underprivileged, under-sourced and those from difficult social circumstances.

The organization is in the process of building a Gender Violence Recovery Centre (GVRC) behind the USIU on the 10 acre piece of land proximal to the Northern by-pass road. Currently, we are engaged in sensitization, awareness and capacity building in form of educational training to the community and the duty bearers in both government and private institutions in Kasarani region.

The GBV outreach program module in schools is part of the community outreach program which started in May 2011 with an aim of reaching out to schools at primary, secondary and tertiary level in the region of Kasarani. The program does not only reach out to primary schools but also colleges and institutions of higher learning.

The GBV awareness, education and sensitization sessions is a 2 hour session/talk which is usually carried out within the school compound in the presence of either all the teachers or at least two teachers, and is expected to equip both teachers and school going children with basic knowledge and skills on School related – GBV response and prevention.

The GBV outreach project in schools also aims at reaching out separately to teachers in one day training on Gender based. The teachers are drawn from the schools targeted for awareness creation, within Kasarani District. The aim of training the teachers is sensitize the students on GBV prevention, a medium through which sustainability of the program is achieved at the school level.

Youth Forums Module

The program has been designed to address the youth due to the following core reasons:
The youth represents an ideal opportunity for GBV prevention because attitudes and beliefs about gender norms and violence are still forming.
• Physical violence by intimate partners often begins within the first year of dating and marriage.
• Substantial proportion of young women experience forced sexual debut, and other forms of abuse in virtually every geographical setting.
• Sexual abuse in childhood and adolescence has been linked to a host of poor health consequences, including unintended pregnancy, abortion, depression, and STI/HIV transmission.
• There is an urgent need to improve the institutional response to girls and young Women who experience violence.
• Survivors of GBV face a high risk of substance abuse, multiple sexual partners, and inability to negotiate contraception.

The KWCWC has engaged youth from various regions of Kasarani district where they are sensitized and trained on aspects of GBV prevention. The youth include but not limited to those in community based youth groups, scouts and various theatrical groups.

During the training sessions the youth undergo a structured way of learning to incorporate lectures, discussion, group activities, case study and role plays.

Youth Based Organisation Component

Religious and faith based organizations are well placed to cause positive changes in any society, due to their ability to reach a wide spectrum of people. These institutions play a key role in gender socialization and act as agents of transformation. KWCWC is cognizant of this distinctive role of religious and faith based organizations and the need to equip their leaders with knowledge, attitude and skills in addressing GBV cases in the society.

Faith based organizations and places of worship are increasingly becoming a place of refuge and spiritual nourishment. The KWCWC program has been designed to provide essential services to help ensure that holistic healing takes place for women and children of all faiths who have undergone any form of violence and to support families overall.

Health Workers

Over the last few months, KWCWC has been implementing community awareness /empowerment programs with a focus to end gender based violence. Currently KWCWC is rigorously scaling up its efforts to empower the Community health workers with awareness on GBV with a view of equipping them with knowledge and attitude in addressing GBV cases in Kasarani Region. The KWCWC works closely with the Ministry of Public Health and sanitation (District community Strategy coordinator) in identifying the beneficiaries of the training and sensitization forums who are drawn from the wider Kasarani region. Under the community strategy government program, the CHW’s are better placed in passing awareness and knowledge to their fellow community members. They interact with the community members in many ways to include the health Centres, church gatherings, youth forums, chief Barazas etc.

The CHW’s are equipped with adequate awareness on GBV prevention at a community level and therefore the response to cases of GBV will be fast tracked and referred to the necessary GVRC’s across the region, they will also act as change agents through GBV prevention messages and dissemination of the IEC materials at the community gatherings and health facilities