By Bibiana Andabwa - Project Leader, Master Virtues Facilitator
As the pandemic continues to impact Kenya government operations, commerce, schools at all levels, our community, and now our own families, we continue our virtues training throughout the community with courage and care.
Since most of our activities are carried out face to face, at this time we have limited ability to meet and provide training in our groups. Our Virtues trained groups carry out their activities with collaboration and solidarity through phone contacts. We continue to carry out counseling using the Virtues Strategies and Virtues Cards in the community, Children Protection Unit, Kakamega Police Station and through the Lutonyi Catholic Church Gender Based Violence and Children Protection Desk. We have continued to receive requests for training but are slowed by government restrictions at this time.
Faith communities are embracing virtues training throughout their communities saying, "it harmonizes their relationships."
As a woman peacemaker and a virtues practitioner, I intervened when the sexual assault of a school girl left residents threatening to kill the perpetrator and harm his family because he was free to walk the streets. I called on my courage and talked to the area Assistant Chief of police. We agreed to work toward peacefulness. I convinced him that what the residents required was Virtues training as, "it has yielded harmony elsewhere." He agreed to mobilize the residents for Virtues Training and that the attendees would be Covid – 19 regulations compliant. We provided training to 100 residents at a local Catholic Church, 70 finished the training. I am pleased to report that no chaos has taken place and that the residents embraced peacefulness.
CHILDREN PROTECTION UNIT, KAKAMEGA POLICE STATION The power in counseling using Virtues Strategies and Cards can be seen at this unit within the police station. Many matters affecting the family, e.g. failing to provide food for the family, family conflicts, disagreements with children, are resolved without being referred to the courts.
LUTONYI CATHOLIC CHURCH GENDER BASED VIOLENCES AND CHILD PROTECTION DESK. The Parish Priest, Rev. Fr. Bonface Kibaki, All Angels Lutonyi Parish, who is Virtues Trained and Catholic Diocese of Kakamega Education Secretary, organized for Virtues Training for leaders of the parish. His intention was to roll out training to other Church groups. Covid – 19 situations raised many challenges in the families and community. Arising from cases which have been handled at the church, we discussed with the priest and he has established the Lutonyi Catholic Church Gender Based Violence and Child Protection Desk. The committee who were elected to handle matters at the desk are Virtues trained. The Parish Priest is the Patron and I am the coordinator. We have a vision to establish a child/adult rescue center, a Virtue school and other relevant projects as resources allow.
We thank you for your continued support and caring. Your generosity has made our work possible, and our community more harmonious and tranquil.
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