Kenyan Red Cross Society (KRSC) has launched a four-year programme in Samburu county to reduce gender-based violence and harmful practices by the year 2026.
Speaking during the launch in Maralal town on Friday, KRCS Samburu branch coordinator Lydia Maina said that the programme which is funded by MFA-Finland will implement the prevention and awareness raising on Gender Based Violence (GBV) in three counties of Samburu, Bungoma and Kilifi.
Maina noted that the project in Samburu County is expected to complement the Finland-Kenya bilateral programme on strengthening prevention and response to GBV which commenced in October 2021.
She said that Samburu county has various forms of GBV which has attracted international attention such as Female Genital Mutilation (FGM), beading, child marriage, neglect, child labour among others adding that some of them are deeply entrenched in culture.
“To eradicate these vices there is need to impart behavioural change by constantly creating awareness against these forms of GBV in the society including intergenerational community dialogues which needs a lot of patience, advocacy and dialogue,” she said.
Maina further said that in order to ensure there is smooth flow of prosecution of GBV cases in Samburu County, KRCS will train community and duty bearers in the government structure such as the police, judiciary, chiefs and doctors.
She further said that the civil society project will also strengthen the prevention of GBV taking into consideration the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on GBV as well as election-related violence.
Samburu County Gender Officer Albert Wanjohi said that the programme’s activities will be coordinated by the State Department of Gender through the County Gender Sector Working Group (CGSWG) to ensure the funds are utilised efficiently and there is no duplication of duties.
“Apart from the government there are multiple partners tackling GBV in Samburu County so to avoid duplication or concentration of activities in one area the CGSWG coordinates these activities for effective results,” he said.
Wanjohi added that through coordination of anti GBV activities in Samburu, the percentage of FGM and child marriages will significantly reduce by 2026.
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