PProgrammes
Raising awareness on gender based violence (GBV) and mitigating its effects on survivors is a core component of Sauti’s activities and forms a cross cutting theme in all programmes.

Gender based violence appears to be on the rise in Coast region and directly imposes obstacles to the participation of women in social, economic and political life. GBV stands at 45% in Kenya as a whole according to the Kenya Demographic Household Survey 2009. There is a need for massive awareness raising campaigns targeting both men and women to address traditional stereotypes regarding the roles of women and the harmful effects of GBV on all sections of the society. Many perpetrators are set free due to lack of evidence with some communities compromising justice and engaging in local arrangements like ‘by-offs’ from perpetrators. This can involve the exchange of money and in some instances marriage.

Women lack awareness of services designed to support them. Such services as do exist are poorly resourced and lack effective referral mechanisms or follow up. Sauti members have confirmed that many of the GBV cases with which they are dealing involve survivors infected at the time of the assault or otherwise at risk of HIV/AIDS. Medico-legal linkages are weak in Kenya, with actors urgently needing to work in tandem to guarantee survivor safety and effectively prosecute cases. Sauti has catalysed remarkable successes in improving multi sectoral responses and medico -legal linkages for GBV survivors. Grassroots women voluntarily take responsibility for coordinating responses to GBV cases within communities in collaboration with partners. Bringing administrative units such as police, village elders Chiefs, the Children’s Department and medical services on board, creates synergy and efficiency in preventing, reporting and solving cases. Gaining the confidence of the police, judiciary and provincial administrators such as Gender and District Officers, is slowly leading to improvements in referral systems and the implementation of laws. Increased uptake of GBV cases has allowed more women and girls to access justice and to benefit from laws designed for their protection. In one Chapter alone over 10 cases of GBV per week are supported. This holistic approach is replicated in community based forums and legal aid clinics attended by survivors, lawyers, gender desk police, Chiefs, religious leaders and psycho-social counselors. These forums are regularly attended by at least 150 people with a quarter being men. “Our main source of cases of GBV from the grassroots level is Sauti. We rely on them to reach those women who normally have no access to justice…working with Sauti also helps us to reach out into the community via forums that make women aware of their rights under the law” (Mama J. Lawyer at FIDA)

W Women and Children’s Rights

Key interventions

Our primary focus is the promotion of Women’s and Children’s Rights and combating GBV in private and public spaces. (LINK) We will also support women’s and girls’ active participation in development processes and promote the incorporation of their perspectives at all levels of decision making. Sauti believes that good security is fundamental to the realization of women and children’s rights and therefore implements measures to promote peace building; including emergency handling & conflict mitigation and resolution.
bullet Undertaking awareness raising in grassroots communities of women and children’s rights as human rights.
bullet Mobilizing grassroots women within the movement to advocate for their rights and challenge violence against women and children.
bullet Supporting the creation of platforms for women and girls to share and profile their issues
bullet Building and strengthening linkages of women’s groups in Coast region, nationally and internationally.
bullet Lobbying and advocacy on issues of women and children’s rights - Influencing policy makers
bullet Lobbying for increased representation of women in decision making bodies
bullet Campaigning
bullet FM Radio shows
bullet Formulating and implementing suitable interventions for children in need
bullet Facilitate the design and implementation of socio-economic projects for women
bullet Documenting case studies and success stories on GBV and other rights violations.
bullet Mitigating the impact of GBV on survivors and their families
bullet Promoting multi sectoral responses to GBV
bullet Holding stakeholder meetings to share learning

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G Governance and Leadership

Key interventions

Women striving to take up leadership positions and participate in electoral process in Kenya are frequently intimidated and many women remain fearful of exercising their voting rights. The patriarchal system continues to impose obstacles to the full participation of women in social and political life. Sauti will implement the following strategies in order to change people’s attitudes towards women and leadership and encourage their participation at all levels.
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Awareness creation and capacity building of women to participate in decision making processes.
bullet Mapping and profiling of women leaders
bullet Promotion of women into existing leadership opportunities including local committees supporting county governments
bullet Supporting annual national strategizing conferences for women leaders
bullet Creating national, regional and international exposure and networking opportunities for women.
bullet Awareness creation and capacity building on women’s participation in existing leadership positions.
 
bullet Social Auditing
bullet Lobbying and advocacy - Influencing policy makers
bullet Facilitation of women’s mentoring and coaching
bullet FM Radio shows
bullet Civic education on democratic principles and human rights
bullet Community sensitization on devolved governance and the new county governments
bullet Hold capacity building workshops on lobbying and advocacy
bullet Translation and dissemination of selected articles of the Kenya Constitution
bullet Public mobilization caravans on key international Days in support of women leadership  
bullet The production and distribution of IEC materials  
 

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H Health

Key interventions

Woman at Coast are faced with multiple challenges in respect to their own health and that of their families. Only 30% of the rural population has access to health facilities within 4km. Rural women are less likely to get antenatal care from a doctor, and more likely to get no care at all.1 In Kenya, HIV/AIDs continues to be an issue that affects women disproportionately more than men with 8.8 percent women infected as opposed to men at 5.5%. 2. Data shows that the poorest women and men are the most disadvantaged in terms of knowledge of methods to reduce the risk of getting HIV/AIDS. 3. Reproductive health rights for women are violated, with many denied access to and information about family planning options. Women do not have the exclusive right to decide on the number of children and when to have their children. Coast region faces various public health challenges including poor planning of sanitation and water facilities and ever increasing problems of waste disposal. Drug and alcohol abuse is rife. Deliberate steps will be taken to promote women’s and girls’ sexual/ reproductive health rights and to raise awareness about HIV/AIDS. HIV/ AIDS is both a cause and effect of violence against women and girls. Thus women’s ability to assert greater control of their sexual and reproductive rights is a crucial means to preventing the spread of the virus and GBV. 1 & 3 The Kenya Demographic and Health Survey 2008 -9. 2 The 2007 Kenya AIDS Indicator Survey (KAIS.)
bullet Advocacy and lobbying on women’s rights to reproductive health
bullet Community mobilization and sensitization on reproductive health
bullet Community mobilisation and awareness on HIV/AIDS and the promotion of the dignity of women living with HIV and AIDS
bullet Promoting behavioral and attitude changes on sexual reproductive rights and HIV/AIDS for women, men, boys, communities and institutions through key major events, sporting events and community forums
bullet Identifying and training of community health workers (volunteers)
bullet Membership of dumpsite and waste management committees
bullet Identifying and networking with likeminded organizations
bullet Establishing health clubs in schools
bullet Creating linkages and referral pathways with and to HIV service providers and home-based care
bullet FM Radio shows
bullet Offering counseling services and parenting skills
bullet Facilitating referrals to VCT centers and lobbying for HIV/AIDS services to be established close to communities.
bullet Monitoring to assess the impact of the HIV/AIDS interventions carried out by Sauti
bullet Documenting and sharing challenges and success stories on the HIV/ AIDS intervention carried out by Sauti.

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E Education
The low levels of education and literacy amongst the women at Coast presents major challenges. Our communities don’t always value education as they should especially for girls. There isn’t enough food as the men don’t take their responsibilities. How can you study if your belly is empty?” Chapter member, Mtongwe. Girls attending schools in the Coast do not perform as well as boys and experience particular problems at home and school. These included hostile environments in both settings, lack of parental support, absenteeism due to a lack of money to buy sanitary towels and cultural beliefs and practices. Girls are often the victims of violence, both within and outside schools, a factor that seriously impacts on their studies and may end in pregnancy. Perpetrators may be boy students, family members or teachers. Many coastal communities still practice early marriages, depriving young women of a chance to finish their education. Poverty and tradition conspire to forced young girls to drop out of school, to get married or work. Thus there is an urgent need to engage duty holders to ensure girls’ timely enrollment, retention and completion of education levels. SYW shall work with the community to ensure timely and sustainable enrollments of girls in schools by addressing the gender disparities.
bullet Organizing community to form pressure groups to advocate implementation of education laws, increased budget and transparency for education
bullet Create community awareness on education rights as in the new constitution with emphasis on the girl child.
bullet Promoting members as to participants in education committees and PTAs
bullet Lobbying and advocacy - Influencing policy makers
bullet Organizing parenting meetings
bullet Formation of peer health clubs for girls in and out of school
bullet Conducting training to empower young people with life skills
bullet Offering counseling services and parenting skills
bullet Through monitoring and evaluation, documenting case studies, success stories and impacts on education.
 

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AActivites
bullet Capacity building of individuals, Chapters and grassroots communities.
bullet Training on women’s rights, civic education, leadership and governance.
bullet Lobbying and Advocacy
bullet Community based education and awareness raising forums
bullet Awareness raising and engament with devolution process and the new county governments
bullet School clubs, “The Queens and Kings of Change,”
bullet Supporting cases of rights violations. Referral and follow up. Cases typically involve GBV, land disputes, inheritance, abandonment, child support and employment issues.
bullet Legal Aid Clinics attended by survivors and duty bearers
bullet Peace building and conflict mitigation activities
bullet Civic Education
 
AAchievements
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With a movement of over 6,500 members, Sauti is creating a critical mass of hitherto marginalized women advocating for change, firstly in their region and ultimately nationally
   
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The empowerment of grassroots women as decision makers, leaders and facilitators of change. Women are becoming Chiefs and village elders, others have joined school committees and Boards of Trustees. ‘Sauti Women’ are now sitting on peace committees and land committees. Some have become Ward Representatives, county representative nominees and one a Woman’s Representative for Mombasa. “Before I joined Sauti, I was not able to talk in front of people. Now I host radio chat shows, speak to forums of over 200 people, facilitate training, write reports in English and appear on television” Binty Ali Kiza, Chair, Likoni Chapter. Grassroots women are increasingly being enabled to join the various planning and decision making committees being established throughout the region to support the new county governments. In this way, they will be given the chance to argue for services and facilities closer to home, built according to their needs. Crucially, they will be taking part in processes designed to address corruption by ensuring compliance to constitutional and other legislation and hold duty bearers to account. Members have also been trained as Social Auditors.
   
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Influencing policy and promoting institutional changes. In 2012, the movement mid-wifed a coalition for devolution in Mombasa aimed at promoting accountability in the county government. Sauti has also succeeded in influencing the formulation of policies responsive to women’s rights issues and actively engaged parliamentarians in passing the Sexual Offences Bill, 2006.
   
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Creating strategic networks, and multi- sectoral and medico -legal linkages for GBV Survivors. Bringing administrative units i.e. police, village elders Chiefs, the Children’s Department, lawyers and medical services together creates synergy and efficiency in preventing, reporting and solving cases.
   
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Promoting peace and supporting conflict mitigation strategies. As a partner of PACT and International Rescue Committee (IRC); Sauti has been instrumental in facilitating peace building projects at the Coast that contributed to a largely peaceful general election in 2013

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