Please save 500 Kenyan Angels- By Wanjala Wafula

26 Aug

Project Title

Save the little Angels of Kenya

Image

 Topic sentence

To Mobilize and build the capacities and competencies of men, boys and communities towards the eradication of child marriage in Kenya

 Why we care

Girls as young as twelve are being forced to lose their childhoods for a life that is defined by isolation, violence and illness

 How we’re solving this

 Community level capacity and competence building

  • Advocacy and aggressive lobbying
  • Aggressive media campaigns
  • Mobilizing all social structure elements including men and boys
  • Social media campaigns
  • Developing and distributing IEC materials
  • Hosting public dialogue forums

 Project description

 In Kenya, as it is in other parts of the developing world, girls are being forced to lose their childhoods for a life that is defined by isolation, violence and illness because of several key factors. They include poverty, lack of education and job opportunities, insecurity in the face of war and conflict, and the force of archaic customs and traditions that devalue women and girls and discriminate against them. Child marriage is a gross violation of human rights and a barrier to girls’ health and social well-being. It severely impedes Kenya’s development efforts including undermining initiatives to raise girls’ education, to reduce maternal mortality, and to increase employment and enterprise levels. Child marriage is an affront to all development efforts as defined by the elusive millennium development Goals and Kenya’s own Vision 2030.

 In our view, child marriage is an outcome of the official tolerance of insidious cultural, societal and customary norms that shape and govern the institution of marriage and family life. Child marriage is culturally packaged as a social necessity, but in many cases it amounts to socially licensed sexual abuse and exploitation of the girl child. Child marriage is more common in rural communities. This is because rural households tend to have more entrenched traditional attitudes and customs, are less affected by external influences, and have fewer livelihood options for young women. It is one of the most persistent forms of sanctioned sexual abuse of girls and young women among the Maasai of Kajiado County in Kenya.

In a nutshell, the cost of child marriage in Kenya is too expensive to disregard. The Kenyan society cannot progress when even the common practice of marriage dooms girls and women to a life of poverty, ignorance and agony. National indicators on maternal health, education, food security, poverty eradication, HIV/AIDS, and gender equality are all negatively correlated with high child marriage rates at the grassroots. We insist that Marrying at a young age has lifelong consequences which unfortunately have been largely ignored by communities where the practice is prevalent. Early marriage thwarts girls chances at education, endangers her health and cuts short her personal growth and development

For the last eight years, the Coexist Initiative has pioneered work around working with men, boys, communities and local organizations towards eliminating child marriage. Many success stories have emerged from our work and we have learned many lessons.  We mobilize and build the capacities of men, boys and communities in general. For continuity, we work with young people especially boys so as to help them understand and build peer support on the idea of preventing child marriage.

The Angel Project is a grassroots initiative that is participatory in nature and utilizes the expertise and tools that are respected by the target community for purposes of galvanizing support towards the eradication of child marriage. The project endeavors to spur change through a culturally sensitive, human rights-based approach that promotes collective abandonment of the practice with men, boys and communities taking a lead.

Why target men, boys and communities

 Because of the non-existence of explicit resources, tools and guidelines that directly target men and boys in efforts to eradicate child marriage

 Because in most African communities, everything that relates to marriage and sexuality is taboo and girls have been forced to cope with it on their own bodies and lives whereas men have maintained a more distant perception on the practice yet remain the main beneficiaries.

Because social and cultural barriers (including patriarchy and male-female power relations) have continued to dominate discussions around child marriage and minimum efforts have been made to mainstream male engagement in child marriage programming

Because of misconceptions and stereotypes that men do not need to be involved in child marriage eradication other than oversee its continuation and the further torment of girls in diverse communities

 

Objectives

 To achieve an overall 10% knowledge increase and understanding of child marriage eradication/ prevention and public support at the community level by mobilizing and empowering a total of 3000 men and boys

 To contribute to a 12% the reduction in the practice of child marriage in by addressing the drivers of the practice which include patriarchy, power dimensions dominated by masculinity, negative traditional beliefs and practices.

To engage the formal and informal media channels in the fight against child marriage at the grassroots.

To contribute to the reduction of fallacious justifications towards the continued practice by 9%.

Project Outcomes

15% involvement of men in anti-child marriage activities in the target region

14% increased community awareness about the negative social and health consequences of child marriage

Established community based safety networks managed by men and boys to result in enhanced security for  girls at both the community and family level increased by 15%

Media practitioners levels of awareness about child marriage raised and their capacities to objectively cover child marriage improved by 25%

Outputs

New communication and advocacy materials, including media training kit, brochures, fact sheets, banners and video produced.

  • A solid reach of over 4000 men and boys as drivers of the campaign against child marriage achieved
  • Approximately 10,000 community members (male, boys, girls and women) made aware of the negative impact of child marriage on girls, women, and their partners’ sexuality, and made aware of abuse of human rights.
  • Media mainstreamed towards child marriage coverage through the formation of the child marriage media club that shall be continuously monitored and evaluated by the Coexist Initiative and its networks

Budget

Activity

 No.

Unit cost

 

Total  (Ksh.)

 

Total (US $)

             

I.C.E Material production and distribution

           

Hand bills

   600

             10

 

             6,000

 

                  73

caps

   200

           200

 

           40,000

 

                488

Posters

   500

             15

 

             7,500

 

                  91

Flyers

   500

             15

 

             7,500

 

                  91

fact sheets

   400

             10

 

             4,000

 

                  49

T-shirts

   100

           300

 

           30,000

 

                366

Audio Visual Media:  (streaming of presentations)

        1

       5,000

 

             5,000

 

                  61

Media (local media channels)

        1

     15,000

 

           15,000

 

                183

Group Discussions: (2 groups each 5 participants)

        2

       5,000

 

           10,000

 

                122

Training:  (3 trainers)

        2

       2,000

 

             4,000

 

                  49

Venue and meals (trainers and participants)

        1

     15,000

 

           15,000

 

                183

Grand request

     

        144,000

 

            1,756

Administrative support

     

           21,600

 

                263

Total project cost

     

        165,600

 

            2,020

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