Reproductive Health Outreaches
The Mango Tree Orphan Support Trust Kenya is currently implementing a “girls for the future” intervention in North Rachuonyo Sub-County.
AIMING TO STRIVE
This project encompasses two great projects dubbed “Women’s Empowerment Project” and “Rescue Centre”. The Women’s Empowerment Project endeavors to eradicate the education barriers that prevent girls from regularly attending school and to empower them to achieve their full potential. This project targets 600 girls in both primary, secondary and tertiary levels of education. On the other hand, the Rescue Centre helps in supporting young girls who have been sexually abused, forced into early marriage, and physically assaulted through domestic violence in the community, with a safe space away from the perpetrators of such heinous acts.
These two projects under the Girls for the Future aim to:
1) Recruit vulnerable women who had dropped out of school to join apprenticeships and boost their business to cater to their daily needs and support their children’s education.
2) Train women on business skills and record-keeping through linking up with the Institutions doing financial literacy education.
3) Empower women through well-organized groups where they get necessary skills and knowledge from those who are now pioneers of their businesses.
4) Incorporate the Family Matter program to equip women with the knowledge on family matters to avoid domestic violence in the community.
5) Enrol those who have acquired relevant skills in the program at National Industrial Trade Authority (NITA) examination for certification.
6) Provide start-up kits to those in the apprenticeship programs after completion and also boost businesses of women who have been trained on how to manage their finances and record keeping.
7) Attach the women to different institutions to acquire more knowledge and skills and gain experience in the current business world.
8) Create market linkages and referrals to women with already existing businesses to earn income.
9) Organizing for exchange tour visits with other institutions to know the currently trending businesses and readily available markets to the women’s products.
10)Create employment opportunities in the community for other women.
11)Provide psychosocial and Counselling support to the survivors
12)Create awareness on gender-based violence and children’s rights
13)Conduct Reproductive Health and empowerment Seminars
14)Offer Alternative Family Based Care (AFBC)
15)Support in crafting of Skills work
- We conducted follow-ups on the 52 women who were supported in small businesses this quarter and discovered that they are doing well and have grown. We decided to form a VSLA (Village Savings and Loaning Association) where the women save money and take out soft loans with a ten percent interest rate at the end of the month because what we gave was insufficient to help them grow their enterprises. This has gone well so far, and the women are pleased with their growth, which they can demonstrate through their enterprises. We set a goal of boosting business for 70 women, and the remaining 18 women will be evaluated in the next quarter.
- Thirteen of the twenty girls enrolled in the apprenticeship program were placed in various institutions while they awaited the National Industrial Training Authority examination, which was scheduled for December 2021. We did supervision this quarter before their assessment to see how well prepared they were for the December exams and what we might do to help other students interested in taking the same courses. Thirteen girls passed the NITA exam, and ten of them were hired by various institutions, allowing them to support their families and children. They will be given start-up kits next quarter so that they can start their own enterprises, and this will also make it easier for us to fill attachment spots for additional girls enrolled in the same program.
- We taught 112 women positive parenting techniques and the importance of family in this quarter's program. Families Matter is a program that aims to assist parents in doing all they can to improve their parenting skills. This program assists mothers in gaining a better understanding of themselves as well as their children. We started the program to help mothers better understand their children and avoid challenges like early pregnancy and early marriage, which are common in the project region.
- In the last quarter, nine girls who had been victims of sexual gender-based abuse had been rescued. One of the victims (a seven-year-old girl who was sexually raped by an uncle) was so stigmatized that she was always crying. Another epileptic had Down syndrome, necessitating home therapy. The victims had a variety of counseling sessions in order to help them overcome their difficulties.
- Held a reproductive health presentation at one of the girls' schools, reaching out to 79 girls. A conference for OVC at the college level as well as those in secondary school was also conducted where we met 156 students and had sex talks, behavior change, peer influence, and Gender-Based Violence discussions.
- During our community implementation, we discovered that there were many children with disabilities who were left at home while their peers went to school and that others were concealed in their homes so as not to be seen by visitors due to social stigma. As a result, we chose to link those with lower limb problems, such as clubfoot, bowed legs, and knocked knees, to the Association of People with Disabilities in Kenya (APDK) Mombasa branch for correctional surgery, and we were able to connect 14 of them. 7 people have recovered from their procedures and returned to their homes.
- We provide ongoing disability awareness in the community in order to minimize stigma, as well as psychosocial support to caregivers. So far, 50 caregivers have joined a psychological support group that meets monthly.
- People living with disabilities who have been discharged from the hospital, particularly those who have had surgery, must be followed upon in order to help them reintegrate back into their families.
- Obtaining spaces for attachment has remained a significant difficulty since the owners of the premises want money in order to accept our children into their institutions.
- With more students enrolling in apprenticeship programs, our training facilities have insufficient training kits.
- Insufficient finances to grow women's enterprises; what we have is insufficient to meet the needs of our targeted women's businesses.
- Girls with young children have a difficult time deciding where to keep their children throughout the class, which interferes with their ability to concentrate.
- The majority of abused children come from extremely vulnerable households to the point where reunification with their relatives is difficult, and they would prefer to spend the remainder of their lives at the rescue center.
- Because there are so many occurrences of GBV in the communities, it takes too long for a victim to come forward and testify, thus some people want to drop the charges.
- Most people still equate disability with witchcraft, thus stigma remains a problem.
Next Quarter Work plan
- Recruitment of other women in the women empowerment program
- After the results are out, the 13 girls who were trained and completed their exams will be given start-up kits.
- Providing small business support to the remaining 18 women
- Purchase of training materials for the new apprentices who will be joining the program.
- Share outs of the VSLA to the groups
- Follow-ups on businesses for women
- Creating a new VSLA for new and established women entrepreneurs.
- Reproductive health outreaches
- Positive parenting
- Tracing and re-integration
- Referrals of PWDs for correctional surgery
- Mobilization and identification of PWDs
- Conducting psychosocial therapy sessions to PWDs caregivers
- Offering alternative family-based care home
- Awareness creation on GBV and health-related issues e.g. wash program
Case1: Hilda, a total orphan who started her course in St Benard Youth Vocational Training and dropped out due to a lack of school fees, says, "A very big thank you to TMT family for considering my plea after dropping out of college and losing hope in life, you came as a God's blessing, may God bless you abundantly, I didn't know I would one day have skills and knowledge to explore. I am now employed and earning a commission of 30,000 per month if it is accumulated over the course of the month. I now pay school fees, rent, and provide for my children and family”.
Case2: Yvone was born with clubfeet, and as a result of her condition, she was unable to attend school on a regular basis due to her mobility issues. She is currently very thrilled following corrective surgery because she can now move about freely.
Yvone before surgery
Yvone post surgery
Hilder plating a customers hair at her salon