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Current Projects

The Kenya Gender Based Violence Partnership

Progress is happening take a look at the June 2014 KGBVP Newsletter!

GBV Newsletter Picture

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It’s time to help break the cycle of gender-based violence.

GBV Fact Sheet

Gender-based violence (GBV) is an endemic perpetrated mainly against women and children that results in physical, sexual or psycho-social harm. USAID and UNICEF research uncovers the following staggering statistics:

  • 83% of women and girls in Kenya report one or more episodes of physical abuse in childhood
  • 75% of women Kenyan report havinge suffered from gender-based domestic violence in the homestead.
  • The majority of Kenyan women believe it is acceptable for men to beat their spouses. 
  • 46% report at least one incident of sexual abuse as a child
  • 36% of rural women report having experienced Female Genital Mutilation (FMG)
  • 25% report losing their virginity by force

228526_405874919462323_1208127050_nThe 2011 drought and subsequent famine in the Horn of Africa and Kenya, recently declared the worst in 60 years, resulted in an estimated 12.5 million people facing a severe food crisis and in urgent need of emergency assistance. While violence against women and girls is often associated with war, natural disasters can bring equally severe risks. The impact of drought and subsequent poverty and displacement heightens vulnerability to gender based violence (GBV) among women and girls. In particular, breakdown in physical and social systems for protection during crisis – like the recent drought and famine – increases vulnerability to sexual violence and exploitation.

Nazarene Compassionate Organization (NCO) of Kenya, Tough Angels, Servant Forge (SF), Strategic Applications International (SAI), UNICEF and IRC are working together as part of our continued effort to address the famine are developing the Kenya Gender Based Violence Partnership to respond to the pandemic of gender-based violence (GBV) in East Africa.

The Kenya GBV Partnership will build its initiative around five pillars that focus on integrated service delivery and sustainable agriculture.  These five components focus on victim counseling, strengthening families and improving community support and response to GBV.

  1.  Training will address how community institutions (e.g. churches and schools) can support a no tolerance stance on GBV.
  2. Counseling services will be provided to victims of GBV.
  3. A GBV Resource Center will deliver a package of integrated services to include crisis counseling, access to medical services, access to law enforcement, child support, and post crisis support for employment and survival.
  4. Family Reunification seeks to reconnect families that have been torn apart by famine, war, and human migration.
  5. The Sustainable Agriculture component will initially be focused on Lodwar where the local beneficiaries of famine relief funds have raised 150,000 ksh ($1,750) of a needed 550,000 ksh ($6,500) to purchase 50 acres of land to develop their own plots to raise maize, beans, and other crops.

SEMA GBV

1394222_594563420605197_1994365533_nStrategic Applications International (SAI)—in partnership with Servant Forge (SF), Nazarene Compassionate Organization of Kenya (NCO), Pepsi, Kenya Model United Nations, LVCT, Youth TV, The Premier League “Big Four” Fans in Kenya, and Mathare Youth Sports Association (MYSA)—has developed the SEMA: Mapenzi Bila Chuki campaign to address attitude and behavior change among Kenyan youth.

SEMA is an initiative under the umbrella Kenya Gender-Based Violence Partnership (KGBVP), an effort by SAI, SF, NCO, and UNICEF to respond to and break the cycle of gender-based violence in Kenya. The mission of KGBVP is to reduce incidence of gender-based violence (GBV) through comprehensive and inclusive strategy of prevention, intervention, treatment, and enforcement by strengthening faith-based and community-based responses to the GBV pandemic in Kenya.

Under the overall mission of KGBVP, SEMA is both an awareness raising and fundraising platform, encouraging youth to take a stand in their communities and speak out against GBV. Recognizing that friends and intimate partners conduct the vast majority of GBV incidences, the approach “Mapenzi Bila Chuki” or “Love Without Hate” is a key message to this population.

Rational of the Sema Campaign

Culture and negative stereotypes are formed throughout childhood and extend into adulthood, affecting marriages and relationships. If theses stereotypes are addressed at an early age—the aim of SEMA—GBV incidence can be substantially reduced.

Objective of Sema

  • To sensitize youth on issues of GBV through training and community mobilization
  • To foster change in stereotypical thinking and attitudes around gender issues
  • To facilitate behavior change from negative cultural norms to positive gender respect
  • To improve the health response for GBV survivors at both community and campus settings
  • To fundraise for future youth sensitization projects and KGBVP activities across Kenya
  • To promote gender inclusion policies among community and campus settings

Sema Campaign Strategy

The campaign targets to reach young people aged 12 to 35 in six participating in Nairobi universities, Manchester United Fan Club events, and MYSA football activities. The targeted universities include Africa Nazarene University (ANU), Catholic University of East Africa (CUEA), Kenyatta University (KU), University of Nairobi (UON), Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology (JKUAT) and Daystar University. The campaign expects to reach nearly 73,000 university students, 1 million Manchester United Fans, and 50,000 MYSA members and community members. A summary of the outreach strategy involves:

  1. University Outreach Strategy – The university student councils (specifically the Gender Affairs Secretaries) will be consulted to endorse university clubs that will spearhead the campaign and receive GBV sensitization training. Participating clubs will be involved in fundraising activities and advocating for behavior and policy change. The club with the greatest funds raised and most successful implementation strategies will be awarded the SEMA Ambassador Award. Talent-based sensitization events will be held in selected campuses each semester, sponsored by PEPSI and Youth TV, and these events will both promote positive GBV messaging and engage local student art and music talent.
  2. Premier League “Big Four” Fans in Kenya Outreach Strategy – Manchester United, Chelsea, Arsenal, and Liverpool Fans in Kenya organize events around Premier League games. These events are held at various venues throughout Kenya’s cities and towns, venues which SEMA is developing strategic partnerships for GBV messaging. The Fan Clubs also promote SEMA’s GBV messaging via SMS, radio, social media and half-time show presentations. The Fan Clubs support SEMA fundraising efforts by placing tins at each venue and promoting giving among fans at various points during the game.
  3. Mathare Youth Sports Association (MYSA) Outreach Strategy – Through its YouthRights program, a human rights and gender-based violence prevention initiative, MYSA incorporates GBV messaging during games, football practice, and other MYSA events. YouthRights supports SEMA fundraising by placing tins around all game venues and practice sites, encouraging players, coaches, and viewers to contribute to GBV prevention programming among the youth and throughout Kenya.

 Sema Campaign Activities

  • Training on university campuses and among MYSA’s YouthRights Committee on GBV
  • Talent-based university events, sponsored by Pepsi and Youth TV
  • Fundraising on university campuses, among MYSA communities, and at Premier League screenings
  • Advocacy on university campuses and communities to promote attitude and behavior change, and gender inclusion policy creation, enforcement, and compliance
  • Media to promote GBV messaging, trainings, and events through social media, Youth TV platforms, and print
  • YouthRights and university student leaders’ customized strategies of GBV prevention and response in their respective communities

Sema Campaign Outcomes

  • Attitude change among the youth around issues of gender
  • Behavior change among youth around issues of gender
  • Improved health of survivors through university and community strategies to promote service and care
  • Reduced frequency of GBV cases among youth in communities and on university campuses
  • Advanced gender inclusion policies
  • Enforced gender inclusion policies
  • Improved community compliance of gender policies
  • Increased involvement among youth of GBV prevention initiatives

BottleAid

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A survival strategy for women in the sex trade is exchanging sex for food, shelter, or protection.

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Recently we met a woman named Mary in Kisumu,a western Kenyan city that is at the intersection of commerce for goods and services moving North and East. Mary, a sex worker for more than three years, reported that she began her work each day byreported that she began her work each day by exchanging sex for an Orange Fanta. That was her price for the cost of sex and her hope for survival that day. In subsequent interviews with other women in Kenya, Swaziland, Rwanda, and South Africa, we discovered that this is a common practice among sex workers.

Sex for an Orange Fanta – that is the harsh reality for women in extreme poverty and living in abuse. They risk everything to survive for a day. An Orange Fanta costs about thirty cents in US currency. We can help stop this!

We are calling on women, men, and organizations to help us do something about gender violence and abuse by taking a series of simple actions.

  1. Purchase a bottle of soda
  2. Each day for thirty days put the money you would spend for one bottle of soda in the empty bottle of soda.
  3. Encourage your friends, colleagues, members of your Church, classmates, roommates, and other social net working groups to do the same.
  4. The average cost of a soda is $1.00. At the end of the month you should have approximately $30,00.
  5. Send the $30.00 to NCM at www.ncm.org and designate it for the Kenya Gender-Based Violence Initiative or to Servant Forge at servantforge.org. For more information on Gender- Based Violence visit the Servant Forge website.

The bottle campaign has a goal of raising $60,000. The money will provide vocational training for women in Turkana and Kisumu Counties in western Kenya where 20,000 women have gone missing because of famine, war, and violence. Three thousand women will benefit from this ministry and work. We need 2,000 women to participate in the campaign to reach our goal. You can start TODAY – help us by taking action and encourage your friends to do the same.

Clean Water Project

1001990_10152048830843875_533443965_nThanks to generous donations from the Jetter’s through the Nazarene Foundation. We are working to build water throughout Kenya to support the communities we serve.  Water is one of the basically necessity of human existence, when our solar pumps systems are installed it allows the communities we serve to start sustainable agriculture and have access to safe water.

In addition, Servant Forge is working in Swaziland in tandem with Swaziland’s HIV/AIDS Faith-Based Initiative and other partners to provide clean water for health clinics and communities.

Clean water is life-giving and life-saving. Although the wells and pipes in Swaziland provide clean water, it is often  transported from the water source to the homestead in contaminated containers. When this happens, the benefits of clean, bacteria-free water are lost.

Servant Forge helps local partners ensure the water remains safe for drinking and use. A simple chlorine dispenser set up at the water source provides single doses of chlorine into each user’s water container. This ensures the container and the water inside are disinfected for up to 24 hours.

Take Action:

A chlorine dispenser can be built and installed for $100. One chlorine dispenser contains 1,000 doses of chlorine and provides for 20,000 liters of clean water. Your $100 donation towards the installation of one of these dispensers in Swaziland will help to ensure that generations of Swazis have access to clean and life-giving water.

Follow The Trash

logo for KickstarterWaste Management

Every day in Kenya an estimated 6,000 men, women, and children search through the garbage for recyclable materials, food, and anything of value to sell, earning around $2.50 on a good day. They search side by side with pigs and dogs, digging through used needles and condoms, medical products, plastics, metals, human waste, industrial waste, chemical runoff, and everything else thrown out by the residents of Kenya’s biggest city.

Not even five miles from the central business district of Nairobi, Kenya, Dandora is the sole dumping site for the entire capital’s trash, growing mountains of trash over its four decade existence. The Dandora Municipal Dump covers thirty acres, containing the waste of nearly four million people, with 2,000 tons being dumped daily.

Experiences of those living and working in Dandora are deplorable. Children are raised in environments with toxins in the air, water, and soil, contracting diseases that can contribute to chronic conditions later in life. Food grown in slum plots is contaminated with runoff water from the dumping site, also contributing to the spread of disease. Even local eggs, a product of chickens that eat scraps from the dump, have been found to contain toxic levels of unintentional persistent organic pollutants. Toxic waste—from electronic to industrial—contaminates the water table as well as the Nairobi River, which touches miles and miles of Kenyan terrain and serves as a water source for many. Explosions and fires erupt spontaneously from methane gas or hazardous materials; vultures and pigs scavenge with people from the mountains and miles of trash for food, recyclables, anything that can be sold; and the stench is unbearable. This is Dandora.

Waste ManagementThe Follow the Trash Campaign seeks to bring awareness to the health, sanitation, safety, and human rights issues slum communities face within dumpsites like Dandora.

Follow the Trash is a campaign that addresses waste management as an urgent issue—not just in Kenya, but across the developing world. In India, as another example, the Ganges River contains such a high level of toxicity from improper disposal of waste that toxins, chemicals, and other dangerous bacteria found in the river are almost 3,000 times over the World Health Organization prescribed limit for consumption. Yet this river is a major source for drinking water, including ceremonious drinking for its healing powers.

Servant Forge is partnering with Level One Communications and other like-minded organizations to begin a global conversation on the problem of trash and urban development. Through these partnerships, Follow the Trash seeks to galvanize support and action to address the management of waste in Kenya and throughout the developing world. Three main objectives shape the activities and direction of the Follow the Trash:

  1. To raise awareness and facilitate conversation around waste management, for the purpose of promoting personal and corporate responsibility for appropriate waste disposal and renewal;
  2. To produce a documentary covering the reality of waste in Kenya and across the developing world;
  3. To facilitate a Nairobi Waste Management Summit to bring together experts, academics, community leaders, and youth to discuss innovative, actionable, and sustainable solutions that meet Kenya’s health and environmental needs;
  4. To convene a Kenyan National Waste Management Secretariat of key stakeholders to implement action steps for change.

As a result of the above-mentioned initiatives, Follow the Trash intends for increased community attention and social activities promoting proper waste management, amended policies to encourage civil accountability, job creation through social entrepreneurship waste management efforts, and lasting solutions to encourage effective and successful grassroots innovation in waste management.

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Swaziland HIV/AIDS Faith Based Initiative

Servant Forge Fellows are currently working with the following groups to develop a coordinated and decentralized health care delivery system to increase HIV/AIDS testing and treatment in rural areas of the country:

  • Ministry of Health in Swaziland,
  • Nazarene Compassionate Ministries, Inc.,
  • Swaziland Nazarene Health Institutions,
  • Raleigh Fitkin Memorial Hospital in Swaziland.

Funding is being provided by the Church of the Nazarene, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and PEPFAR, the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief.

KYEEIWorking with Africa Nazarene University and U.S. Agency for International Development, Servant Forge supports this national initiative to empower the expanding number of unemployed youth in Kenya.

Meaningful work and a secure home are what dreams are made of in Kenya. With over half a million youths graduating high school each year and a job market that can accommodate only a small fraction of them, many young people can fall victim to petty crime, violence, and substance abuse.

Servant Forge helps local leaders facilitate, mediate, and broker partnerships that will ignite job readiness, creation, and sustainability. Partners from the business, government, education, and the faith communities have united to address these serious conditions and alter the trajectory of Kenya’s future toward prosperity.

Take Action: 

There are many projects under the KYEEI including the empwerMEnetwork, a business-to-student mentoring project as well as Trees for Life, a youth-led effort to rebuild the Mau Forest after years of deforestation and destruction.

Past Projects

Horn of Africa Donations

The drought in the Horn of Africa – the worst in 60 years – has had devastating consequences.  It has undermined agriculture and caused famine, impacting 12 million people. The political chaos in the country of Somalia has complicated global action to respond to the famine and provide desperately-needed humanitarian relief.  Refugees pouring into Kenya and Ethiopia from Somalia have complicated an already severe health and safety crisis in the two host countries.  The city of Dadaab, Kenya, originally established to handle 90,000 refugees from Somalia, now has about 400,000 people.  Right now, Dadaab is the fourth largest city in Kenya, and new camps are emerging each week..

SAI’s client, Nazarene Compassionate Ministries, INC. (NCMI), is identifying ways to respond to this current crisis. Cosmos Mutowa, Regional Coordinator for Nazarene Compassionate Ministries in Africa, has challenged the denomination to raise $500,000 to initiate and be part of a global effort to respond to this crisis by providing water, sanitation, food, shelter, and services to protect women and children.  The famine requires an immediate response and swift action.  However, Nazarene Compassionate Ministries is committed to building capacity in its congregations and NGOs to address the systemic issues around health, education and safety. SAI, in our role as Global Resource Coordinators for NCMI, was asked to help assess the current capacity and opportunities for NCM-Africa to develop a response to this famine and drought.

Because of SAI’s current work in Kenya with the Kenya Youth Employment and Empowerment Initiative, we began looking at Kenyan resources and opportunities for collaboration in response to the famine.  We conducted a site visit to Garissa and then to Dadaab on August 4-6, 2011.  During these visits, SAI met with Kenya Red Cross, Food for the Hungry, UNICEF, UNHCR, Samaritan’s Purse, CARE International, and OXFAM to assess what current efforts are focusing on, where the greatest need is, and what contribution our team could make to be most effective.  Based on these meetings, SAI is currently working with NCMI to finalize an action plan.  Part of this plan will include both addressing  the current needs caused by the crisis as well as building long-term capacity  to increase longer-term resilience among vulnerable populations.

Medical Camp & Detoxification

A young entrepreneur in the Korogocho slum in Nairobi, Kenya has a vision of his friends and neighbors living drug-free.  Drug use is rampant in all Kenyan slums and Korogocho is no exception.  Services are available to only a small fraction of those who want to find treatment.

Servant Forge supported Blue Cross and Brian Odour, a young entrepreneur, for the Medical Camp and Home Detoxification program. This was a two day workshop with a 30 day follow-up period.  The audience was those living on Korogocho interested in stopping their dependency on drugs. The two days provided information on health and other key issues. The 30-day follow-up period was supported by community health workers, counseling, and other key detoxification components.

The two-day event had a remarkable outcome. Only 40 patients were initially targeted, but the team recorded a high of 59 patients. Out of the 59, 20 of them met for three weeks and almost ten had remained dry through counseling for the three weeks. The remaining 39 appeared in the two days of the camp.

Some key outcomes of this effort are not only the ten people who remained drug free, but also the relationships being built with Ministry of Health officials and the positive reception of radio publicity. Many challenges lay ahead for Blue Cross and the Korogocho slum, but systematic, locally-driven approaches are being explored with success.

Methamphetamine Treatment & Prevention Program

With funding from the Substance Abuse Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services as well as the Office of Community Oriented Policing (COPs) at the U.S. Department of Justice, Servant Forge Fellows facilitated Methamphetamine: The National Summit to Promote Public Health, Partnerships, and Safety for Critically Affected Populations

This initiative focused on providing services to incarcerated populations, those involved in the Lesbian, Gay, Bi-sexual and Transgender (LGBT) community, and women by removing barriers to service and treatment and creating prevention opportunities.

Underage Drinking

Servant Forge Fellows James Copple, Colleen Copple, and Beth Mattfeld are working on projects to train state and community leaders on prevention, enforcement, and treatment strategies that respond to binge drinking and risky behavior. They are currently involved in projects at the University of Louisville and Bloomsburg State University and are also working with state leaders in Arizona, Indiana, and Alaska.

City of Alexandria, Virginia Gang Task Force

Servant Forge Fellow and Strategic Applications International principal James E. Copple has been appointed by the Mayor to the City of Alexandria Gang Task Force and chairs the sub-committee on drop out prevention. This sub-committee is developing recommendations on transforming the way schools respond to potential drop outs and engaging innovative and creative solutions that will keep young people in school and away from gangs and gang violence.