Mar 11, 2021

Help Increase the Peace Program in Schools

Students in two hour HIPP session.
Students in two hour HIPP session.

As we struggle with post Coronavirus pandemic period, we have started accounting for the consequences of the nine months’ schools closed in Kenya which has left a lot of students of in both Quakers and non-Quakers schools going on rampages.


In Chesamisi boys secondary school students went on rampage accusing the deputy principal for changing their entertainment from night to day time. Students were asked to be watching TV during evening hours and then go for preps at night which angered the young boys. The boys also accused the teachers of watching English premier league matches using their TV and decoder. Students smashed teacher’s cars, destroyed window panes in both classrooms and offices, broke into the school canteen before heading to the neighbouring Chesamisi school, where they damaged property. They were repulsed by police.


St Luke's Kimilili boy’s high schools has been closed indefinitely after students went on strike destroying school property. The students went on the rampage, accusing the head boy of punishing one of the student who was found in possession of bhang/marijuana. The boys smashed window panes of laboratories and the office of the deputy principal at night.


In Friends School Lugulu Girls a student was defiled one morning in a school bathroom as she was taking a shower before morning preps. They said the victim woke up as usual to go take a shower when an unidentified man pounced on her, covered her mouth using his hand to stop her from calling for help and defiled her and fled.The students said they were unhappy that the school had not taken any action which forced them to hold demonstrations to protest against alleged defilement of a student.


In a neighbouring Kisii county a student allegedly attacked two teachers using a kitchen knife. He allegedly tried to kill two teachers at the school’s staffroom by stabbing them using a kitchen knife. He attacked the teacher for punishing him for arriving in class late and when a co teacher was attempting to rescue his colleague, he sustained four deep cuts in the head and was admitted to a nearby hospital.


A form two student at Mokwerero Secondary School in Nyamira county was arrested for threatening to slash the deputy principal. The student was armed with a machete and a sharpening file.


Students will always experience different challenges in schools, and will need specific interventions to address their grievances, Help Increase the Peace Program (HIPP) was created by American Friends Service Committee (AFSC). The training is based on the belief in the worth of every person, and faith in the power of love to overcome violence and injustice. HIPP, which evolved from AFSC’s successful, adult-focused Alternatives to Violence Program (AVP), teaches non-violent ways to prevent and resolve conflicts and is used in schools across the world to help students learn peace-making skills.


Transforming Communities for Social Change has done 8 HIPP basic trainings in 6 secondary schools reaching out to 224 students and 10 teachers in Ivugwi high school, St. Teresa secondary school, Tande secondary school, Chelebei secondary school, Mugunga secondary school, and St. Augustine secondary school.


Lessons learned


Understanding the purposes of the Help Increase the Peace Program (HIPP) which gives students a platform to participate in finding amicable solutions on issues of violence especially in school.


Learning and use of I-messages in promoting effective communication among students, which help students who are either disagreeing with each other, or negotiating with each other, to express their own positions on matters in a candid, assertive and non-threatening manner.


Active Listening skills maximizes the chances of truly hearing what others are saying; including their deeper meanings. Often times students will not initially reveal what is troubling them; either because they may not yet know themselves and they may just need to talk it out, or because they do not want to share their deeper concerns until they sense that they are in a trusting environment which don’t threaten confidentiality.


Help in conflict transformation strategies for preventing bullying, sexual violence and sodomy within and outside of classrooms and fostering cooperation and trust within classrooms.


Demonstrate Win/Win Negotiation process used in combination to resolve or transform conflict especially on matters of entertainment and diet in schools.


Work on conflict resolution strategies for preventing gender violence in relationships within and outside of classrooms.

Testimonies


“I had issues with my self-esteem. When I joined form one I had big body and some students used to mock and make funny of me, I grew up hating myself which affected my performance. I am impressed by the new adjective name, no more self-hate”.


“HIPP lifts brought new energy, fun and laughter in the class. It makes us forget about our problems back at home.”


“Am impressed by our head teacher for accepting us to have a peace corner in our school. This will enable us to have a place of meditation and reflection on matters of peace”

Students at HIPP lesson.
Students at HIPP lesson.
Students at their peace centre built by Amani club
Students at their peace centre built by Amani club
Students at peace corner.
Students at peace corner.
Jan 25, 2021

January 2021 Narrative Report

Wome at a sewing training session.
Wome at a sewing training session.

The Kakuma Refugee camp women sewing project progressive report January 2021.


“You have all successfully completed your basic training. I welcome you to bring all your rich cultures and designs from South Sudan, Congo, Somalia, Burundi, Uganda and Ethiopia. Through this, we will achieve rich diversity and a unifying community around the camp.” Trainer


GlobalGiving has continued to support women in Kakuma Refugee camp, For many years. GlobalGiving has helped and given a digital platform to help donors across the globe who had keen interest with women in Kalobeyey settlement in Kakuma Refugee camp Many have donated funds to support the dreams of these women,  most of whom are windows and single parents, The last three month since August 2020 we manage to buy 10 sewing machines and started training the women with basic skills of assembling the sewing machines, understanding safety measures and precaution, parts of sewing machines, types of stitches and knots, new market designing technics of fabrics and general repaired of used clothes and fabric.

Early this month 10 women graduated, and are ready to venture into sewing business, 5 from Kalobeyey settlement and 5 from Kakuma two phase two will work together and register a small scale sewing company. Each group of three women from each camp has be given a Singer Sewing Machine. The women will be organized into a business society association which will help with purchasing materials and other necessary items to enable them to start small scale business of sewing school uniforms, designing new dresses and repairs. Through the skills obtained in micro entrepreneurship the women will venture into business of the sewing project. The profits made will help sustain families of these women and host community. Through this project, women will be empowered to self-reliance and sustainability. Through cohesion and integration, host community who are the Turkana will sell the fabric to the refugees and refugees will make clothes and sell to both hosts and other refugees from different countries in the camp.


Next month the remaining ten women will start their training for three months. Later they will join the first group. The advantage of this second group is that tthey will have enough practice from the first ten women who have been already been trained.

Sewing trainees at work.
Sewing trainees at work.
A young son helping out.
A young son helping out.
A mother getting instructions.
A mother getting instructions.
A trainee at work.
A trainee at work.
Jan 12, 2021

December 2020 Report

Participants in a trauma healing workshop.
Participants in a trauma healing workshop.

The world in general has been affected by violence, natural disasters and different other awful things that happen to people in their lives. Giving examples among the many that exist, COVID-19 pandemic continuing to surge in many countries, Kenya is getting into post Covid-19 pandemic period and new words have been added to the question ‘’when you hear the word trauma what comes to your mind?’’, this include corona, curfew, lockdown, stay at home and quarantine. In this new words many people have committed suicide, some gone into depression because of loss of livelihood, starvation and begging for food, families have separated, early pregnancy among school going children and violence against among women and children are the consequences of the new words.


The 3 basic Healing and Rebuilding our Community workshops we have conducted during month of December has help to build community capacity to respond to wide-spread trauma and to strengthen resilience during this difficult time of this pandemic.


“I have been stressed for the last eight months, the anxiety and pressure that I have experience since Covid-19 was reported was overwhelming. The virus confronted me with demands that I was not able to face as a woman and widow. When we were starving I remember you brought us food, Then later you invited us for a one day listening session and you gave us chance to share our challenges how we can manage our own lives during the pandemic. Today I am happy you have trained me on trauma, the training has given me inner strength”


HROC will always talk about difficult issues, we always try to create safe space for everyone because most of the participant may not be knowing each other, most of them come from different places with different experiences. We carefully welcome all emotions from our participants that include fear guilt, grief, panic, anxiety, irritability, depression and intense anger.


“I have developed intense anger and uncertainty of when things will get back to normal. This has been my struggle, intrusive images of how Covid-19 victims were buried in white bags with men in white gears, seeing many people die in other countries, still linger in my mind, am afraid and I hope this training will help me overcome”


Small groups always give in-depth conversation on topic of discussion, partcipants answering the question

“What was the experience like for you to talk about the consequences of trauma?”


“As women of Mt Elgon, we have benefited from all the programs TCSC has offere which include AVP, HROC,  Listening session, birth companions, mediation and women empowerment. Uou have been very supportive and companion to us. In our struggle you have helped us heal from trauma. We say thank you. Please share our stories with people that have support your programs. Wish them happy new year on our behalf”

 
Sometimes it is easy for women who share the same pain to understand each other, with one of our lead facilitator Hellen, sharing is part of healing. A group of women who didn’t what to share in a big circle were given to share amongst “I feel better than the way I came”


Moving forward TCSC will be conducting internal impact assessment evaluation on its programs stating next month


Date Activity             Male       Female      PLW    Facilitators   Total
3-5/12/2020 HROC     18                                            3             21
7-9/12/2020 HROC       4            20             1              3             25
10-12/12/2020 HROC    3           18              2              3             26


Update
Starting this January TCSC will be moving to its new office that is located on Kakamega -Webuye road, The office will help facilitate administrative responsibility for our organization as requested my Non-governmental Organization board due to difficulty accessing the Mt. Elgon Peace Centre. However the government in currently working on the road infrastructure.


Small group discussion in HROC workshop.
Small group discussion in HROC workshop.
Small group discussion in HROC workshop.
Small group discussion in HROC workshop.
The ongoing renovation of our new TCSC office .
The ongoing renovation of our new TCSC office .
 
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