In INERELA+ Kenya, we are also actively involved in carrying out advocacy and capacity building activities. Although our advocacy work is evolving and needs further strengthening, it is targeted both at faith communities as well as policy makers. Our advocacy goal is to influence faith communities, governments and other organisations to refocus on issues of HIV prevention through a comprehensive approach. We are aiming at changing the perception that ABC (Abstain, Be Faithful, Condom Use) are sufficient to combat HIV; in our view this has not helped to control the epidemic in Africa and other regions. INERELA+ Kenya notices that there are people who abstains from sex, or have been faithful to their partners but due to their vulnerability as a result of gender power imbalances, poverty, lack of sex and sexuality negotiation skills etc still get infected. INERELA+ Kenya is therefore advocating that at National levels, there should be a holistic and comprehensive approach which simultaneously emphasizes Safer practices, Access to Treatment and Nutrition, Voluntary Counselling and Testing and Empowerment of individuals to reduce vulnerability to HIV (SAVE) in order to save lives.
In that regard, we therefore actively engage in overcoming gender imbalances, opening up discussions around issues of sex, sexuality and faith and providing opportunities for faith communities to explore various empowerment projects such as economic empowerment through agribusiness, education and awareness on human rights, especially working with women on land and property rights. At policy maker’s level, INERELA+ Kenya is involved in NACC, NASCOP KANCO, National Network of People Living with HIV and AIDS to advocate for the fulfilment of the commitments that governments have made to ensure successful combating of HIV and AIDS. These include educating and raising awareness on UNGASS declarations, Universal Access Declarations, 15% health spending from National budgets Abuja commitments.