1.1 Devotion and Welcome remarks
By Pastor Wanjala from Acts 13: 36-39
King David was active in leading his generation in the way that God willed. Today, unlike David, we have absconded our purpose for our generation. Pastor Wanjala challenged the participants that the meeting was a good forum to begin doing that which God intends of us in order to bring healing to our society. Violence is not God’s will, He intends for us to live in peace and thus Gender Based Violence (GBV) is not His intention for society.
The National Coordinator of INERELA+ Kenya, Jane Ng’ang’a welcomed the participants to the meeting and introduced the purpose and objectives of the meeting which was to plan for the 16 days of gender Activism. She also introduced the Sustainable development Goals (SDG’s) to lay the context for the conversation and urged the participants to focus on SDG 5: “Achieve gender equity and empower all women and girls”
Participants were drawn from various religious institutions and media houses including: Kenya Broadcasting Corporation (KBC), Citizen and Trans World Radio (TWR); representing the media while religious leaders were drawn from Gospel Evangelism Church of Kenya (GECK) and Presbyterian Church of East Africa (PCEA). There were 15 participants: 8 Male and 7 Female.
1.3 Objectives of the Meeting:
Objective 1: To generate awareness among faith communities on theological perspective of violence against women
a) One day interfaith planning meeting with religious leaders to plan for the campaign
b) Support documentation, adoption and consensus building of the implementation plan by individual identified congregations leadership
c) Support dissemination of IEC materials through congregations on theological perspectives on Violence Against Women (VAW) and gender justice.
Objective 2: To hold advocacy campaigns on gender justice
a) Support meetings with different FM stations to lobby for airtime to create awareness on VAW and gender justice
b) Support religious leaders to disseminate information on VAW and gender justice through radio talks
c) Support congregational mammoth walks to market places for distribution and dissemination on information on VAW and gender justice
d) Enhance call counseling services to increase referrals and reporting on GBV and psychosocial counseling for survivors
e) Map out services providers available around the campaign areas for referrals and procedure a fact sheet on the same for dissemination
f) Support the religious leaders to plan and participate in county based WAD
1.4 16 Days of Gender Activism
This is an international campaign originating from the first Women’s Global Leadership Institute sponsored by the Center for Women’s Global Leadership in 1991. The participants chose the dates November 25 (International Day against Violence against Women) and December 10 (International Human Rights Day) in order to symbolically link violence against women and human rights and to emphasize that such violence is a violation of human rights. This 16-day period also highlights other significant dates including November 29, (International Women Human Rights Defenders Day), December 1, (World AIDS Day), and December 6, which marks the (Anniversary of the Montreal Massacre).
PURPOSE OF 16 DAYS OF ACTIVISM
• Raising awareness about gender-based violence as a human rights issue at the local, national, regional and international levels.
• Strengthening local work around violence against women.
• Establishing a clear link between local and international work to end violence against women.
• Providing a forum in which organizers can develop and share new and effective strategies.
• Demonstrating the solidarity of women around the world organizing against violence against women.
• Creating tools to pressure governments to implement promises made to eliminate violence against women.
2.0 Understanding GBV
Defining Gender Based Violence (GBV): “GBV is violence that is directed against a person on the basis of their gender” – the definition goes on to include economic deprivation and isolation, which may cause eminent harm to safety, health and well-being.
The Link between GBV and HIV
Some of the ways through which HIV and GBV are linked include (but not limited to):
– Rape can result in HIV transmission.
– Victims of gender-based violence are more likely to engage in risk behaviors, such as injection drug use, which may increase their risk of exposure to HIV
– Intimate partner violence has been shown to be a risk factor for STIs, which, in turn, may increase the rate of HIV transmission
– Victims of gender-based violence are often unable to negotiate the use of a condom while at the same time proposing the use of a condom may increase women’s risk of violence.
Case Study showing the strong correlation between GBV and HIV:
“Alice* is 36 years old. Her husband forces her to have sex and this is one of the main reasons for the continuous abuse. She says she knows he has many girlfriends and sleeps around a lot. She knows of HIV/AIDS and does not want to get it but in her efforts to avoid getting any diseases she is severely beaten up.”
What are the statistics in Kenya of GBV cases?
3.0 Legal Framework
GBV in Kenya in terms of legal framework is addressed in the following documents:
• The Constitution of Kenya 2010 (Bill of Rights-Chapter 4)
• The Penal Act/Code Cap 63
• The Sexual Offences Act 2006 which criminalizes:
Rape; Attempted Rape; Sexual assault; Defilement; Attempted defilement; Gang rape; Indecent acts; Child trafficking; Child prostitution; Child sex tourism; Child Pornography; Incest; Cultural and religious offences; Sexual offences relating to position of authority; Deliberate transmission of HIV
• The Children Act 2001
• The Prohibition against Female Genital Mutilation Act 2011
• The Marriage Act 2014
• The Matrimonial Properties Act 2013
• Counter Trafficking in Persons Act 2010
• The Protection against Domestic Violence 2015 which entails:
Protection of the family from violence and not just the woman; Application for a protection order by the victim; Religious leaders being among those allowed to make application on behalf of the applicant and Widening the meaning of abuse to include; violence within marriage, interference from in-laws, virginity testing, stalking, widow cleansing, forced and child marriage, FGM, forced wife inheritance, damage to property and verbal abuse.
NB: The context of GBV cases however is complicated by the interrelation between common law, religion and culture making the burden of proof to criminalize these cases, especially rape, difficult.
4.0 Group Presentations and Plenary
T he participants were divided into groups to come up with a plan and way forward regarding the planning of the 16 days of activism.
4.1 Media House Representatives
STATION DATE SHOW & TIME TOPIC CONTACT RESOURCES NEEDED
Citizen 25-11-2015 Live Swahili GBV Awareness Martin
Content Material and Resource Persons
TWR 20th November to 10th December Pre- recorded interview 6a.m
Live Swahili 6 p.m
GBV related topic General Manager / Director
KBC 19-11- 2015 Live Show or Pre-recorded in English or Vernacular Station Manager
4.2 Religious Leaders
ACTIVITY LOCATION DATE RESOURCES NEEDED CONTACT
Peace and GBV Awareness Day – Calvary Covenant Church: Nairobi County
– PCEA Kikuyu Church: Kiambu County
13-11-2015 – GBV experts/ resource persons
– Media coverage Rev, Alusioza
Congregant Mobilization – Calvary Covenant Church: Nairobi County
– PCEA Kikuyu Church: Kiambu County
4-11-2015 IEC Materials Rev. Njuguna
Gospel Parliament Kayole
20-11-2015 – GBV experts/ resource persons
– IEC Materials
Interreligious Forum Komarock 26-11-2015 – GBV experts/ resource persons
– IEC Materials
Sensitize male champions for Family Planning Kayole 16-11-2015 – GBV experts/ resource persons
– IEC Materials
Rev. Alusioza and Bishop Okombo
5.0 Way Forward and Closing Remarks
The participants agreed to follow up on the activities in the specific congregations, while INERELA+ Kenya disseminated the necessary IEC materials to facilitate this process and pledged to liase with media to fill in the slots allocated. The meeting was closed by Jane Ng’ang’a who thanked the participants for cooperating and taking on the responsibility to fight GBV.