Engage Jamii Initiative with the support of the US Embassy-Kenya, has trained Kajiado local leaders; chiefs, religious leaders and other community leaders on how to deal with issues arising from Sexual Gender Based Violence (SGBV).
The training which took place in Kajiado town saw over 30 local leaders converging together to be equipped with legal knowledge and skills on how to deal with perpetrators of gender-based violence and how to give psychosocial support to the survivors of SGBV in their respective areas of jurisdiction.
Fatuma Juma, the director of Engage Jamii Initiative said that the training was meant to equip the leaders on the do’s and don’ts when handling the victims of sexual based violence and train the leaders to understand the laws on what to do when one is assaulted.
“As you all know SGBV is having a high prevalence rate in Kajiado because many issues have been encountered since the Covid-19 that has led to high levels of poverty making people suffer silently and have no avenue to communicate. It is therefore for this reason we saw it wise to bring in a psychologist to equip our trainees with knowledge and skills so that they will be able to handle victims of SGBV correctly,” said Fatuma.
Fatuma further noted that going forward, there will be community sensitisation forums on matters pertaining to SGBV and legal redress.
“In January, we are going to engage the children, women and men from Majengo in Kajiado town to understand their rights and to know the signs of the perpetrators and to be able to know where they can go for support,” said Fatuma.
The programme has also brought advocates on board so that the community can understand their rights and be able to see how to get support in case they are handling SGBV cases in the society.
Betty Naseyio, an advocate working with Engage Jamii Initiative said that people should have some legal basic knowledge on how courts handle cases as sometimes they see perpetrators of sexual gender based violence walking freely in the village having committed grievous harm against women and children and wonder why they are not in police custody.
“Sometimes, it’s a matter of people being released on bail, lack of sufficient evidence or ignorance on the part of the victim or the people making a follow-up on their behalf such that they don’t end up following up appropriately and sometimes these victims end up missing out on mentions and such cases end up being dismissed,’’ said Naseyio.
Naseyio called upon the survivors of SGBV to follow all the legal system framework put in place to ensure that they get justice.
By Sammy Rayiani and Diana Meneto