Unveiling Sexual and Gender Based Violence in Kenya
COLOPHON August 2010 ‘FACING VIOLENCE’, a multimedia project to unveil SGBV issues in Mombasa, Kenya. ICRH Mombasa International Centre for Reproductive Health P.O.Box 91109 - 80103 Mombasa – Kenya Tel: (+254) (0)41 2494 866/ 2493 962/ 249 3237 Fax: (+254) (0)41 245 025 E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org www.icrhk.org ISBN: 978-90-781-2819-9 This document has been published for general use. Copies can be ordered through e-mail at email@example.com. A pdf can be downloaded through the ICRH website: www.icrhk.org. With the support of Planned Parenthood Federation of America www.plannedparenthood.org All photographs: © 2010 Nadia El Mahi www.nadiaelmahi.com Photography & co-ordination: Nadia El Mahi Texts & research: Elizabeth Aroka Interview decoding: Dorris Chivilla Graphic design & Layout: Mshenga Mwacharo
ICRH Kenya International Centre for Reproductive Health - Mombasa
FACING VIOLENCE Unveiling Sexual and Gender Based Violence in Kenya
ICRH Kenya in partnership with Planned Parenthood Federation of America (PPFA). ISBN 978-90-781-2819-9
FOREWORD Sexual and Gender Based Violence (SGBV) is a serious public health and human rights concern defined by the United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) as “violence that is directed against a person on the basis of gender or sex. It includes acts that inflict physical, mental or sexual harm or suffering, threats of such acts, coercion and deprivation of liberty”. It is harm that is perpetrated against a person based on power inequalities resulting from gender roles with a majority of the cases involving women and girls. It encompasses a wide variety of abuses that include sexual threats, exploitation, humiliation, assaults, molestation, domestic violence, incest, forced prostitution, torture, insertion of objects into genital openings, sodomy and attempted rape amongst others. For criminalized groups like Sex Workers, Men Having Sex with Men (MSM) and Injecting Drug Users (IDUs), the stigma and prejudice in society puts them at a greater risk of violence than others. Some of the consequences of SGBV include transmission of HIV, STIs, unintended and unwanted pregnancies, Hepatitis B/C, psychological trauma, physical injuries and even death. According to World Health Organization’s (WHO) Report on Women and Health (2009), abused women have higher rates of unwanted pregnancies, abortions, adverse outcomes of pregnancy, STIs, HIV and mental disorders. In the event of SGBV perpetration the immediate need is usually access to medical management (treatment of injuries, provision of emergency contraceptives, Post Exposure Prophylaxis (PEP) and STI treatment), psychosocial and legal support. These however remain under utilized due to barriers like lack of knowledge of SGBV related issues, location of the services or even the knowledge of the existence of such services. This can be partly attributed to the culture of silence, apathy and speaking in hushed tones that is characteristic when dealing with SGBV within the family, community and other institutions in the society. This only serves to encourage violence against the vulnerable and Most at Risk Populations (MARPs) and at the same time limit their access to essential services hence resulting in decreased health outcomes for them. Kenya has made a significant stride within its policy and legislative framework relating to SGBV and other health related human rights through for instance the passing of the Sexual Offences Act and the HIV Prevention and Control Act amongst others. The recently promulgated constitution has also brought great gains in the realm of human rights protection. This notwithstanding, access to justice still remains a challenge. Many survivors do not report cases of SGBV due to many reasons like self blame, embarrassment, fear (due to threats) and shame. In cases of incest, survivors may be worried about reporting their own family members to the police for fear that it may wreck the family. Another key barrier to accessing services is the negative attitude of law enforcement agents when handling survivors. The nature of offences like rape is that more often than not there are no witnesses thus making such cases difficult to prove. It is often the word of the victim against the perpetrator. This may make survivors worried that they will go through the ordeal of a court case all for nothing. Though the reasons
given above are many (and there could even be more) survivors need to be encouraged to report to the police and also seeek medical care. The unveiling violence (GBV Multimedia) project seeks to highlight the issues relating to SGBV that are seldom spoken about due to some of the reasons shown above. The project documented real life experiences of Survivors of SGBV by exposing the sources as well as long term consequences of survivor’s morbidity and mortality related to SGBV. Women, girls, boys, sex workers and Men Having Sex with Men (MSM) all recounted their ordeals. Apart from one case on unsafe abortion all the other cases related to sexual violence. The team was not able to capture the aspect of GBV within the domestic setting. One woman who had brought in her child to participate as a survivor of sexual violence fitted in the ‘domestic violence’ category but decided not to have the story documented due to fear of more violence and of losing her ‘daily bread’ as she was dependant on her (violent) partner. One survivor of sodomy, a boy aged 13 years, whose perpetrator was his school teacher was also not able to participate in the project due to lack of time. He was in the process of being placed in one of the children’s homes in Mombasa as the environment he was living in was not conducive. Children in his school would mock and laugh at him over the sodomy incident. Sadly for this case the headmaster has silenced the matter by failing to report the case to authorities. He (the headmaster) also took steps to ensure the teacher left the school. Perpetrators in the study ranged from strangers to neighbors, relatives, family friends, sex workers’ clients and even law enforcement agents (police and General Service Unit officers). To get insight of the SGBV related issues, services available and challenges in accessing the same, the project team also sought information from staff at the Gender Based Violence Recovery Centre (GBVRC) at Coast Province General Hospital (CPGH), a Court Prosecutor and the Director of one of the children’s homes based in Mombasa that rescues and houses abused girls. This project is dedicated to all those who have undergone SGBV of one form or another. It is our hope that they will find hope and strength through the stories that we have highlighted. Given the existing high rates of SGBV, it is our further hope that, through this project, action shall be created through public pressure and awareness raising to ensure that the health related human rights of all, especially vulnerable groups are not compromised. Taking note that existing knowledge gaps on SGBV may make it difficult for practitioners to undertake effective practice that reflects policy, it is intended that this document shall serve as an advocacy tool to ensure viable and sustainable strategies that will address the sources and long term effects of SGBV are put in place.
Marleen Temmerman Chairwoman of the Board ICRH - Kenya
Nzioki Kingola Deputy Country Director ICRH - Kenya
ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS To the project participants, for opening up to us and for trusting us, it was an honour and privilege to share these important moments. To the project leader and ICRHK Management, for trusting us in bringing this to a good end. To the project team, for the enthusiasm and the belief we could make it work. To the GBVRC team, for we could not have done this without you. To ICRHK Peer Educators- Phelister and Clifford for their commitment and tireless effort to get the target participants. To Inspector Wycliffe Sumba and Ms. Sarah Nyamvula for giving us the invaluable service provider perspective. To the CGPH, for accepting our invasion. To PPFA for funding the process and the production of this material. Without you this work would not have been possible. Thank you all.
THE GBV MULTIMEDIA PROJECT
PROJECT TEAM Project Director Nzioki Kingola Consultant Photographer & Coordinator Nadia El Mahi Scientific Researcher & Interviewer Elizabeth Aroka Project Intern Dorris Chivilla Graphic Designer Mshenga Mwacharo Head of GBVRC Christine Katingima GBVRC Counselor Lydia Mbaya GBVRC Nurse Lilly Baya
The GBV Multimedia Project is a project by ICRH-K in partnership with PPFA with an objective to create awareness on the magnitude and consequences of SGBV for women and children and promoting services for SGBV survivors in Mombasa. The project used multimedia to highlight the plight and experiences of survivors of SGBV. The main outcome of the project is the reduction of incidences of SGBV based on raising awareness and catapulting effective, community owned prevention strategies. The outputs of the project include: a) increasing awareness on the magnitude and consequences of SGBV for women and children and the communities within which they are exposed to risks; b) promoting services based at the countryâ€™s first Gender Based Violence Recovery Clinic for SGBV survivors; c) production of I.E.C materials: photography and website development, a booklet and DVD on SGBV to raise awareness on GBV and also enhance the capacity of service providers in addressing SGBV. Ethical approval was received from Kenyatta National Hospital Ethics and Research Committee on 10th September 2009 thus paving way for the project. Participants were identified and recruited through the Gender Based Violence Recovery Clinic (GBVRC) and ICRHKâ€™s Peer Educators. They all signed informed consent forms to demonstrate their willingness to participate in the project. This was after ensuring that the participants understood what the project was about, how it would be executed and how the photographs and information they gave would be used. For participants who could not understand English, a Swahili translation was made available. In the case of minors, consent was obtained from their parents/guardians, though steps were taken to involve them as much as possible taking into account their age, level of maturity, degree of understanding and best interest.
SGBV IN MOMBASA:
Facts & Figures
While the Sexual Offences Act (2006), related legislation and public advocacy have opened debates around health rights in Kenya and the surrounding Eastern and Southern African countries, violence against women and children continues at an unprecedented rate. In Kenya particularly Sexual Violence targeting women and girls remains rampant. The post election violence that was experienced in Kenya in early 2008 left thousands dead and over 350,000 people, many of them women and children displaced. Statistics showed a significant increase in SGBV not only for the internally displaced persons, but also other parts of the country where security was an issue. Studies conducted by the Kenya Demographic and Health Survey (KDHS) between November 2008 and February 2009 show that a total of 13.3 % of women reported having been sexually violated while a further 39.0% reported having been physically violated by a spouse within that year. Upto 12% of women aged 15-49 reported having their first sexual intercourse that was forced against their will. Not only has recent political violence aggravated the issue, but sexual coercion and Physical Violence violence in Kenya has long been festering in the Sexual Violence diverse socio cultural environment in Kenya. This is notably so for Mombasa, where culture, Fig 1: Physical and Sexual Violence ever customs and archaic Reported: 15 – 49 yrs Female (KDHS 2008 – 9) colonial laws confounded on tourism exploitation and a poor economy ensure that women and children remain exposed to high levels of physical, emotional and sexual violence. The widespread occurrence of SGBV, coupled with poor access to comprehensive services for survivors of such crimes creates a situation that doubly victimizes survivors and seriously endangers their health and lives. 45 40 35 30 25 20 15 10 5 0
15 - 19
20 - 24
25 - 29
30 - 39
40 - 49
On – going data surveillance at Gender Based Violence Recovery Clinic (GBVRC) at Coast Province General hospital (CPGH) indicates that well over 1,787 survivors have been seen at the centre between August 2007 (when the centre was inaugurated) and August 2010 with up to 84.5% of the clients being female. According to national data and
data from the GBVRC, children under the age of 15 years are more prone to SGBV. The following graphic is data from the GBVRC showing the different age groups who visited the clinic between January and July 2010. Fig 2: Age Distribution: January to July 2010
It thus follows that the most common type of assault reported at the GBVRC is defilement as can be seen below (Fig. 3). Fig 3: Assault Types: January to July 2010
Coerced sex namely defilement and sodomy, the primary offences against children in Coast Province as shown above, have been shown to lead to high risk sexual behaviours stemming from emotional and behavioural damage at an early point in the life cycle, often leading to early sexual debut, multiple partners, unprotected sexual intercourse and sex work. Among adults, especially women and other vulnerable adult populations, violence is
likely to be unreported in Mombasa due to cultural and religious reasons. Various research both in Kenya and beyond show that â€˜criminalizedâ€™ groups like sex workers and men having sex with men experience more violence than other populations. This can be attributed to the socially, politically, economically and legally unfriendly environment that they operate in. This calls for greater recognition of these vulnerable and most at risk populations.
Gender Based Violence Recovery Centre, Mombasa FACING
GENDER BASED VIOLENCE RECOVERY CENTRE (GBVRC) The Gender Based Violence Recovery Centre (GBVRC) is a Post Rape Care Centre based at the Coast Province General Hospital (CPGH) in Mombasa providing 24 - hour care to survivors of Sexual and Gender-Based Violence (SGBV). The Centre aims towards providing comprehensive, quality care for survivors of rape, sexual violence and sexual exploitation. It receives on average six survivors of rape/ defilement and other forms of sexual abuse daily with most of the clients being girls under the age of 15. Standards of care at CPGH were previously focused on treating survivors of abuse and violence with acute care: treatment of injuries, forensic evidence collection and recording of findings. Medical provisions were also made for the prevention of Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs) including provision of post-exposure prophylaxis for HIV and Emergency Contraceptives for unwanted pregnancies. The reality however is that follow-up to post rape care is patient-dependant and typically, incapacitated survivors are more likely to avoid seeking services thus calling for the need for appropriate resources and the ability to effectively triage such victims/survivors. This also calls for provision of follow-up care addressing the physical, psychological and legal consequences of abuse. It is against this backdrop that the CPGH GBVRC was born with a mission to complement and strengthen the available services. A task force was set up with the objective of setting up a demonstration intervention project at the Casualty Department at CPGH. It was further to provide data to the national authorities to roll out the concept of care and support to SGBV Survivors. In 2006 funds were received from the Danish International Development Agency (DANIDA) to set up the programme. The clinic was officially opened on May 25 2007 by Dr Sharif, Senior Deputy Director of Medical Services, Ministry of Health. Other representatives from CPGH, ICRH (Prof Dr Marleen Temmerman, Director) and DANIDA also attended this important event that marked the beginning of access to expanded services to survivors of SGBV. FACING
The Centre has developed initiatives to: • provide comprehensive, quality and continuous care for survivors of sexual and gender-based violence as outlined in the Kenya national guidelines for rape and sexual violence; • offer improved physical and psychological services in a confidential and supportive environment; • assist with legal and social counseling to Survivors who have experienced violence and their families; • monitor and evaluate the follow-up care of survivors; • create evidence-based outcomes promoting public health care alongside legal advocacy; • raise awareness around the physical, social, and legal implications of sexual and gender-based violence at the individual, community, hospital, national and regional levels. Some of the Centre’s achievements include: • enhanced hospital and community awareness via trainings; • continuous monitoring of health service delivery components; • application of the framework for comprehensive care, support and prevention developed by the Population Council in 2006. In July 2008 a Social Science and Policy Unit was created with special attention for expansion and sustainability of the GBVRC quality activities. Out of this unit, the Health and Legal Rights programme was launched in 2009 in partnership with the Open Society Institute of East Africa (OSIEA).The aim was to develop a concrete advocacy, legal and policy-based programme that promotes health as a human right. Through the Fig 4: Accessing Care within 72 Hours of Assault
programme, 25 paralegals have been trained to serve as community based advocates on SGBV hence provide a vital link between the community and the medico- legal sectors. The programme operates under the comprehensive framework for treating and preventing SGBV that calls for coordination between the community, the legal sector and medical services. Further through the sex worker and police advocacy study, sex workers have been trained on their health related human rights and on documenting violence for purposes of developing evidence based interventions and production of consensus building and advocacy Information, Education and Communication (IEC)/Behavior Change Communication (BCC) materials. A data in-take form which provides information for mapping of hot spots and profiling of perpetrators, service provision overviews and PEP follow-up has also been designed in conjunction with CPGH. The GBVRC and its partners have made a tremendous difference in addressing SGBV issues in Coast province. However a lot of sensitization still needs to be done with the community to not only develop strategies to prevent SGBV but also on what steps to take in the event of perpetration and the importance of reporting to the hospital within 72 hours. Contact: Christine.firstname.lastname@example.org, Head of GBVRC Tel: +254 734 466 466 or +254 722 208 652
LORINE Her shy smile and beautiful brown eyes instantly draws one to her. She has a visible birth mark on the left side of her arm and an air of cheerfulness around her. Looking at her one would not imagine what this young girl has had to go through at a mere age 10. She lives in Soweto Likoni with her family. Likoni is a division of Mombasa, Kenya, located to the south-west of the island. Her story begins on 12th May 2010 in her neighborhood, Likoni. On this day she was walking home alone from school at around lunch time when a man grabbed her from behind and dragged her into an abandoned building that was under construction where he defiled her. “Alinishika hivi...” (he caught me like this), she says while cupping her mouth to demonstrate how the man grabbed her from behind while covering her mouth to stifle her screams and cries for help. “Akaweka kitu yake hapa...” (He put his penis here) she says pointing to her genitalia. “Nililia…” (I cried). All this time Lorine’s mother, who fries potatoes for a living close by, did not know what was happening to her daughter. A neighbor came to inform her that a man had been caught defiling her daughter in the abandoned building. She quickly ran to the crime scene to find a large crowd of people gathered. People had given chase but the perpetrator had run away leaving behind his shoe. She took her daughter and rushed her to the nearest local clinic where nothing much was done as the clinic did not have the necessary equipment to take samples. The following day Lorine’s mother returned to the crime scene to see if gather any evidence that could lead to the identity of the perpetrator. Luckily the shoe that was recovered at the scene of crime was traced to a young man (whom the mother believes is under the age of 18) who sold ice in the area (Likoni) but lived in Magongo which is in Mombasa West Mainland. She went back to the police station to report the matter and the man was arrested. The police then referred her to the Coast General Provincial Hospital for medical attention and forensic evidence investigation. Unfortunately the local clinic that she had first visited did not inform her of how best to preserve evidence in cases of sexual violence. She had thus gone home and washed Lorine and her clothes too and in the process tampered with evidence. The attending doctor informed her that “hakuna uchafu” meaning there is no evidence to show that her daughter had been defiled. Fortunately though they visited the hospital in good time for Post Exposure Prophylaxis to be administered. They were also offered counseling services. The matter is currently in court but has failed to take off on many occasions for reasons not known to Lorine’s mother. She says at one point the accused was not brought to court and the prosecutor did not explain to her the reasons of his absence after the session. She thus still does not know the status of the case. She says she is quite frustrated as she has lost so much time following up on the matter. The perpetrator’s family have not approached her to have the matter settled out of
court but she boldly states that if they did she would gladly accept at least Kshs 20,000 to compensate her for the lost time and money! “Kama ningewaona ningemalizana na hao huko huko.. hii ni kulingana na vile nimeshatembea mpaka kazi haendelei na watoto wananiangalia…kama ingekuwa inafanywa chap chap niendelee na kazi na ule afungwe singefanya hivyo…ningechukua kama shilling elfu ishirini hivi” The mother says she is still “pained” because of the act that was committed against her daughter. She is however grateful for the assistance rendered at the GBVRC.
MWANAFUNZI Mwanafunzi is a young girl aged 13 years and in class four at one of the primary schools in Mombasa. She lives with her mother at Mnazi Mmoja in Maweni area, Mombasa. She is an extremely shy girl who can hardly hold eye to eye contact with anyone. During the interview she was unable to speak in the presence of her mother. For her to open up and speak to us the mother had to leave the room. Her mother says that she has always been a quiet and shy girl but ever since the ordeal she went through with her sister’s boyfriend in November 2009 she has built a cocoon around herself. She looks troubled and hides whenever she sees people. She has no friends both at home and at school. She prefers to spend her time indoors doing household chores whenever she is at home. On that day Mwanafunzi’s elder sister came to pay them a visit. The mother decided to prepare food for them, as she was making the food, the elder sister asked if she had any groundnuts to add to the food and the mother said that she didn’t have any. The elder sister decided to send Mwanafunzi to go get some from her house since it was not far. It was dusk. On reaching the house the girl took the keys from where she was told she would find them and opened the door. She was surprised to find her sister’s boyfriend in the one roomed house seated in the dark. She was able to locate a matchstick which she used to locate the groundnuts. Suddenly her sister’s boyfriend pulled her from behind and onto the bed. He proceeded to undress her and himself and defiled her. Meantime her mother and sister were wondering why it had taken her too long to run the errand when the sister received a phone call from one of her neighbors telling her of some suspicious noises emanating from her house that was dark. She quickly ran to the house and the first thing she saw at the door was her boyfriend’s sandals. She walked into the dark room and using an inbuilt torch in her phone was able to illuminate the room. She saw her boyfriend with his pants down and Mwanafunzi half naked crying. She was too shocked for words and quickly took Mwanafunzi away with her home to their mother. The sight of her two daughters crying shook their mother to the core. She asked them what had happened and the girls narrated their story. Mwanafunzi sister’s neighbor came and advised the mother to report the matter to the police station. At the station their statements were taken before they were referred to the Coast Province General Hospital where they were given medical care. Mwanafunzi’s sister has since broken up with the man whom their mother says is polygamous as he is married to two wives and is said to be “born again”. The mother had on many occasions tried to make her elder daughter to leave the man who according to her was wasting her daughter’s time. The mother followed up the case but decided to forgive the perpetrator on account that he was their neighbor and that his relatives had approached her to withdraw the suit. However when she heard rumors going round that the man was talking ill about her saying that she was a stupid woman and if she thought that he had truly committed the offence then she should have reported to relevant authorities for him to face the law. This provoked her so much that she decided to reinstitute the case.
Shame, anger and uneasiness: even after a year Mwanafunzi has not digested what happened to her, she looks lost in her own worldâ€Ś
The case is now in court. She is glad that she went to the police station immediately after the incident, otherwise she would have bathed Mwanafunzi therby tampering with the evidence. The mother states that she cannot discuss issues about sex with her daughter Mwanafunzi at the age she is in because of embarrassment. â€˜Yeye bado ni mdogo,â€? meaning Mwanafunzi is still too young. When Mwanafunzi visited the GBVRC with her mother she was offered PEP, Emergency Contraceptives and was also couselled to help her deal with the situation.
SUSAN Her name is Susan. She is 24 years old and works as a bartender in one of the bars in Likoni, Mombasa. The distant faraway look in her eyes is evidence of the pain and anguish she feels as a result of the rape ordeal that she went through in the hands of one of the patrons who frequented the bar. She later came to learn that the perpetrator is a soldier, a fact that has made access to justice almost out of reach to her. For Susan, one night in June 2010 came with an experience that she will live to remember and that taught her not to trust anyone. Little did she know that what began as a normal night at her place of work would end up being the most terrifying night, of which the scars she would bear for the rest of her life. On the material night she was on duty at the bar when one of the frequent customers came. She served him as usual as he engaged her in small talk. He bought her a drink and asked her to join him, but she declined as she was still on duty. He waited for her until around 11.00pm when she was done with her shift and invited her to join him for a drink in town (the [Mombasa] island). Based on the trust and the friendship that had grown between them, Susan agreed to accompany him. They took the ferry and crossed over to the island in the man’s car. The car stopped around the main post office area in town, where the perpetrator parked the car and they got into a taxi. He told the taxi driver “Kama Kawaida” meaning “as usual”. Their next stop was at one of the barracks in Mombasa town where Susan later got to learn is where the man worked. They had a few beers here. After two drinks, Susan excused herself to go use the wash rooms. She came back and continued taking her drink. But before she could finish this second drink she started feeling abnormally dizzy. She was puzzled as she had never got drunk on two bottles of Guiness before. She had the capacity to take at least eight to get drunk. In panic she asked her date to take her home to sleep as she was not sure she would manage to stay awake through the night in the state she was in. He told her that she could not go home and that he was going to take her to another club. They left. On reaching outside Susan asked him to flag down a “tuktuk” (a tricycle that is a popular means of transport in Mombasa) as she was feeling too tired to walk. He refused and insisted that they walk. She made an effort and flagged down a “tuktuk” herself but he waved it away. They walked for about 15 minutes when he abruptly stopped near a bush. They were in Mama Ngina Drive. By now Susan was feeling too weak to move. He took her to this bush and down to a cliff by the ocean, pinned her to the ground, tore off her clothes and raped her. He then stole her handbag and ran away. When Susan visited the scene much later (to show us the place where the rape incident happened) all she could say with a distant fearful look in her eyes was “this man wanted to kill me”. He had left her hanging precariously on the cliff. Any move to the left would have seen her roll over and fall into the dark, murky, cold water in the ocean below, to her death. Fortunately for Susan, a taxi driver who was driving by saw the man running away from the scene while carrying a woman’s handbag. His instincts told him something was
wrong. He went closer to the bush and saw Susan struggling to get up. He rescued her and asked her to tell him where he could take her to get help. Susan directed the taxi driver to the barracks/ camp where the guy had taken her earlier to have drinks. The gate keeper was kind to her and answered her questions regarding the man as he had seen her with him earlier. As she was still trying to get more information from the gateman, a group of soldiers came out from the camp and started harassing her. On seeing this, the taxi driver decided to take her to the Central Police station rather than leave her there where she was exposed to more danger. The police recorded her statement and referred her to Coast Province General Hospital where she was given medical attention and later referred her to the GBVRC. Susan tried to follow up on the matter by going to the camp. She found out that the perpetrator had been transferred to Voi ( a town that is approximately 142.72 kilometres (88.69 miles) from Mombasa) the day after the incident occurred. She was able to recover her purse which the perpetrator threw on the road right after the crime. She however did not recover her phone and some money that was in the purse. He stole them. He also took away a business card that he had earlier given her detailing his contact information. Susan strongly feels that the perpetrator committed the heinous act on that particular day knowing he had been given a transfer and would be leaving Mombasa the following day making it difficult for him to be traced. The police are still investigating the case. Susan says that all she is seeking is justice and hopes that the police will treat the perpetrator just like any other suspect and not accord him protection being that he is a soldier. She also hopes that he will be given the punishment he deserves.
When she visited the scene of the incident all she could say was â€œ Yaani nikiona hakuna kitu naweza sema. Mungu alinisaidia bado niko naweza kuja kuona mahali hapa.Yote naachia Munguâ€? meaning There is nothing I can say. God has helped me and given me life to be able to visit this place again. I leave all to God. The perpetrator is still at large.
Susan shows us how he grabbed her and how he then stole her wallet. Nothing much was left in it when she recovered it and the only card she had earlier on received from the perpetrator, which could help her track him down, he took away...
WAIRIMU Wairimu is a 27 - year old Muslim lady who works as a house help at Mwembe Tayari within the city centre of Mombasa. She is quite soft spoken. When we met her she was well clad in a ‘bui bui’ and the ‘hijab’ that she wore on the day of the incident. She is divorced and has an 8 year old daughter who lives with her parents upcountry. Recalling what she went through brings tears to her eyes. She has to stop every so often to compose herself as she tells her story. It was on 21st October 2009 at around 6.00pm when Wairimu was sent by her employer to buy groceries which were to be used to prepare supper. The grocery store was not far from the house. She bought the grocery and hurried back so that she would be home before it got dark. It was dusk. As she was walking on the street, 2 men approached her and told her that they wanted to take her somewhere for employment. When she declined and told them that she was not searching for a job, one of the men went behind her, held her by the neck, and warned her not to scream. They told her to give them everything that she had but before she could do anything they relieved her of her phone that was under her ‘buibui’. They then made her walk with them for about 15 minutes. By this time it was already dark. They led her through dark alleys until they reached an abandoned building. There they tore her clothes and raped her in turns. During the ordeal they kept asking her if she had children and she said that she did not have any. She screamed and they told her “ukipiga kelele twakumalizia hapa hapa” meaning if you make noise we will kill you here. “As the men raped me all that I kept thinking of was my daughter. I thought they were going to kill me” she said. When they were done they told her to take a vehicle and go home as they disappeared into the darkness of the night. They left her in the desolate place alone, scared, confused and in shock over what had just happened to her. She did not even know where she was. She composed herself and walked until she reached a road. She tried to flag down a number of vehicles but they just passed her. Finally a ‘tuktuk’ stopped and the driver took her to the police station where she recorded a statement and was referred to CPGH and GBVRC where she was given medical attention and counselling. Just like many survivors she chose not to tell anyone that she had been raped due to fear and embarrassment. She says this is because women in the society are viewed differently. Some may tell her that it was her fault that she was raped and that others may even criticize her. Even her own family only knows that she was attacked by thugs and that she was robbed. She did not disclose the rape to them. The only person who knows what happened to her is her employer and whom she says she informed only because she felt that she owed her an explanation being that she had come back home late from an errand. Wairimu does not know the men who raped her thus no arrests have ever been made to date. She says that the fact that the perpetrators are out there somewhere makes it difficult for her to get over the ordeal. She can hardly go out when it is dark nowadays. The incident has also made her to distrust people as she is afraid of what they can do to her and her daughter. She could not even drink the soda the study team offered her after the interview. She prays that one day justice shall be done. The HIV negative test results
enabled her overcome the fear of having contracted HIV and this has enabled her look into the future with hope. Her greatest pillar of strength has been her employer. She has really supported and re-assured her. She is also grateful for the counselling that she received at the GBVRC. When we made a follow up on Wairimu after this interview we found out that she had moved out of Mombasa and back to her rural home. She just does not want to live in the city anymore.
A court room at Mombasa Law Courts
ACCESS TO JUSTICE:
Interview with a Prosecutor Legal support is a key component in the comprehensive care of survivors of SGBV. However the same remains underutilized due to various reasons. Wycliffe Sumba, a police prosecutor based at the Mombasa law courts shares with us his experience. A typical day for him in court entails handling different types of cases including rape, murder, traffic offences, assault (physical violence) and many more. With regard to SGBV, he informs us that the biggest problem is that society does not understand the nature of such cases or how to handle the same in the event that one occurs, thus making the disposal of such cases a challenge to prosecutors. Many people do not even know what services to seek and/or where to seek the same. Many times the community reports a matter to the police station or even apprehend and present a suspect to the police station then retreat back to the society without realizing that they still need to follow up the matter to help the Police to gather evidence that will ensure the prosecutor has enough information to prosecute the case. Many times Sumba has found himself playing multiple roles when handling survivors. Apart from being a prosecutor he at times has to provide emotional and psychological support to vulnerable survivors and sometimes assume the role of an investigator. This mostly happens when he realizes that the court file is missing crucial evidence /exhibits. At times after the matter is reported to the police, the witnesses may fail to handover important exhibits like the clothes the survivor had on at the time the offence was committed or the perpetratorâ€™s clothes which could be analyzed to come up with forensic investigative evidence. In such instances he sends the file back to the investigating officer with instructions for the file to be fully investigated or for the charge sheet to be amended before the matter is next in court. In cases of poor investigation ,the prosecutor tries to find circumstantial evidence that can back the evidence given in the absence of scientific evidence. â€œWhere all the evidence is lost then we have nothing to make a conviction and we advice that the case be withdrawn to go back and carry out further investigations.â€?
The success of the work of prosecutors depends a lot on the work of other key players in the chain of evidence. Sumba says that an example would be the Gender Based Recovery Centre which is the first place where survivors are received. Once somebody has messed up at this point either by failing to obtain some evidence then it really messes up his work as a prosecutor because he cannot obtain that information anymore. If the attending clinician or doctor fails to obtain some information then this means that he has thrown out some evidence. At the police station there is a P3 form which is like a summary record of all that has been done at the health centre. You may find that the doctor filling out the P3 form fails to get proper evidence from the doctor who received the Survivor “So if I see this I tell the investigating officer to go back and try to get this information at the clinic, however late it may be since he might get something to help us to proceed with the case,” says Sumba. Sumba lauds the coming into force of the Sexual Offences Act, 2006 which he says has enhanced access to justice for survivors. “What has been enhanced in this Act is the kind of punishment and sentence on the offenders but the procedure (system of investigation, trial and many more) remain the same” he says. “Whenever an Act is passed in parliament there are seminars arranged for magistrates, prosecutors or combined seminars where the makers of such a document come to sensitize and teach what they would expect from us. This helps to familiarize us with the laws,” he says. Majority of the sexual violence cases that come to our court are those in which the survivor knows the perpetrator. Under the Penal Code (some of the sections in the Penal Code mainly dealing with Sexual Violence were repealed with the coming into force of the Sexual Offences Act) this posed a major challenge as the parties could at any point agree to withdraw the case from court through settlement. However under the Sexual Offences Act neither the Prosecutor nor the survivor/complainant has the power to withdraw a case from court. Only the Attorney General can do so.”
Another major challenge is culture, as there are communities around Mombasa that believe where one has been sexually violated or in any other then they can sit as a community or as a clan and agree on how to sort it out of court. “In my community it is planned that if you committed rape you will pay 10 heads of cattle and the case is over. Such customs are interfering with the legal framework. You will find that an offence of such magnitude gets lost because nobody has appreciated that we have the law and what it says about such offenses if committed within the community,” Sumba says. Other challenges that Sumba pointed out include: 1. The ratio of the Kenyan population is much higher than the police on the ground thus compromising the work of the police as they are not able to cater for everybody’s needs. 2. The scarcity of police officers also has an effect on the police stations. At the police station there is a gender-based table which is supposed to be always manned by a police officer but sometimes you find that there is no one to man it since the officer on duty may have been assigned some other work. 3. Getting evidence from the scene of crime for the police while accompanied by photographers and an expert is a big challenge due to logistics on the ground. “You will also find that in one police station we have got only one motor vehicle to serve the whole area, so for example if incidences occur simultaneously and they are all emergencies, the police have to go to one incident first before going to the other and by the time they reach there most of the scene evidence may have been destroyed,” he says. 4. Poorly investigated cases which make it hard to prosecute a case well. 5. There are no designated courts or prosecutors to deal with gender based violence cases.
All prosecutors handel all cases at the same time, so it is difficult to build any expertise on a specific issue. 6. There is congestion in the court list, a magistrate may deal with 20 cases in a day in consequence justice is delayed. This is because the courts and the magistrates are few while the cases are many. 7. Recording of witness’ testimonies is tiresome for the magistrate especially if there are many cases in the cause list. 8. The Kenyan law says that an accused person can only stay in police custody for only 24hours and must either be released or submitted through the court process which makes it difficult for investigators to carry out a full investigation in only 24 hours. 9. The specialized police e.g. criminologist, photographers, bomb explosive expert are not available in every police station thus leading to poor communication and inad equate services. 10. Storage cabinets are not lockable so the court files cannot be stored in the prosecutors’ office. 11. There are no computers in the office to help simplify prosecutors’ work thus all the cases are stored physically in files. There is only one complete file per case, which is used by different service providers (prosecutor, attorney, police officer, ...) In conclusion Sumba gave the following recommendations: 1. The gender desk at the police station should be manned by at least 10 people to ensure continuity of services and collection of evidence. 2. Special courts and prosecutors to deal with gender based violence need to be established like it is now being done for children’s cases. 3. Amend the 24 hours police custody law. 4. The government should take up the responsibility of training all police officers in every scene so that any policeman can be able to manage any type of scene instantly without requiring specialized assistance. 5. There is need for awareness programs on SGBV within the community.
Not only broken windows: old file cabinets stand in the prosecutors’ office space, empty, … the court house needs a proper filing system, which due to lack of time, money and the immense workload of all is severely neglected...
MARIO Mario is 23 years old. He is a MSM who is a part-time male sex worker living in Mombasa with his parents. He says he has liked boys since his childhood. He remembers how when he was in class 3 (the age of about 9 years old), he would go to the football pitch just to admire boys who were playing. Living as a MSM in Mombasa which is predominantly a Muslim town has not been easy. He has been ridiculed, abused and harassed because of his sexual orientation. As a coping mechanism he has learnt to ignore everyone and live his life without caring what society thinks of him. He engages in the part-time Sex Work to help him meet the needs that his parents cannot provide for him, like clothing. One Saturday in July 2008 he was at this friends place at Kiembeni when at around 11.30 pm his friend was called by his boss and told to go Kilifi right away. This meant that Mario had to go back home. His friend offered to give him a ride home but Mario turned it down opting instead to take public transportation which was operating the whole night being that it was on a Saturday. Mario’s friend thus dropped him at the matatu (mini-bus) stage at around midnight and left for Kilifi. As Mario was waiting for a matatu to board, a man who also looked like he was also looking for transport came and stood beside him. After a few minutes Mario felt a cold object on his neck and a voice told him that if he screamed he would be killed. The man told Mario to start walking. They crossed the road and the man led him through a dark alley. As they walked Mario noticed that more and more men were coming out of their hiding places and joining them. The number rose to seven. They led him to a dumping site where they started harassing him. One of the men pushed his fingers into Mario’s eyes so as to blur his vision. They took his phone and all the money he had. Suddenly one of the men started slapping him and as he was begging them to let him go one of them realized that Mario was a MSM. This made them harass him even more. One of the men degradingly told him “wewe si unapenda kutombwa sana? leo tutakuonyesha” meaning that since he really liked having sex they were going to teach him a lesson. They were going to sodomise him. One of the men pleaded with the rest of the gang not to sodomize Mario but they would not listen. They held him by his hands and feet, turned him face down on the garbage dump and sodomized him in turns. Five out of the seven men sodomised him. They then left him there and ran away. Mario stayed down for a while and when he felt it was safe for him to move got up and dressed. It was by now around 4.00am. Close by, there was a house where some Muslims were preparing to go for the early morning prayers at the mosque. He approached them and requested for a glass of water and some money to take him home. They helped him. When Mario went home and the family members inquired about what had happened to him he told them he had been attacked by thugs who stole from him. He was taken to a nearby clinic and was given painkillers to relieve pain. He later on called a friend who
works with an MSM initiative in a local research institution. His friend advised him to go to the GBVRC for treatment. He did. He says that staff at the clinic took good care of him and did not treat him any differently owing to his sexual orientation. He was given Post Exposure Prophylaxis and counselling which he says were quite beneficial to him. He has never reported the matter to the police and has to date never told any of his family members what exactly happened on that night. He only disclosed to them the fact that he was robbed. “As a MSM living in Mombasa you are not safe,” he says. “But I have learnt to be me and live my life. I do not try to hide my orientation,” he concludes.
Mario does not want to live another life than his own, with acceptance of who he isâ€ŚIt is hard, even going from one side of town to the other side is a risk. He is always afraid of what might happen to him.
OMAR Omar is a 22-year old part-time a male sex worker living with his parents in Majengo, Mombasa. He is the only boy in his family. He comes from a very strict Muslim family and his childhood was spent mostly indoors. He says that he has always looked and felt like a girl. Just like other MSM in Mombasa he has always been treated differently from other members of the society. There are instances whereby he has been thrown out of clubs because of his sexual orientation. “This always makes me feel bad,” he says. At one point my own father threw me out of the house because I am gay,” he adds. Omar’s experience was in December 2007 just after the Kenya General elections. He had gone out to have a drink at Nyali barracks in Mombasa. At around 11.00pm he left the barracks alone feeling tipsy but strong enough to get himself home. He went to the bus stop and took a matatu. He alighted at Mzizima (close to CPGH) and crossed over to wait for a tuk tuk. As he was waiting he felt somebody grab his neck from behind. He tried to resist by fighting back when another man appeared and inserted his (the second man’s) fingers into his eyes. This made him weak and unable to see clearly. He heard voices of more people coming but could not make out how many they were. He felt more hands touching him. Somebody lifted him off the ground and when they placed him down they started tearing off his clothes. They then sodomised him in turns. After they were through they took his wallet, clothes and shoes ran away. “ I felt someone strangling me from behind...when I tried to fight back, another one showed up and inserted fingers in my eyes I become weak and could not see.They carried me . I did not have any idea where they were taking me. They did what they wanted to do and ran away…” says Omar. When he felt that the coast was clear he got up and tried to figure out where he was. He realized that he was at Tononoka grounds in Mvita Constituency, Mombasa. “I could not see clearly as a result of my eyes being injured…After few minutes at least I could see and that is how I realized was at Tononoka Grounds, at the Nursery school,” he says He was bleeding because his anal veins had been ruptured. He went to the nearest police station to report the matter. The ordeal had left him so traumatized that when he got to the police station all he could do was cry when the police asked him what was wrong. The police were not amused by this. Instead of calming him down the policemen at the station opted to set him aside and attend to other people first. “They actually took a complete statement from one of the women who had come to report an incident before they could attend to me.” He told them what had happened and they criticized him for being MSM which conclusion they came to based on how Omar was dressed. They took his statement and told him to go home.
Omar being a peer educator at International Centre for Reproductive Health knew about the GBVRC and the services it offers. He went to the clinic and was attended to by the nurses at the clinic and was allowed to go home. He did not tell anyone about what had happened on that night until at a later stage when he decided to disclose to his mother and elder sister who have been his greatest pillars of strength. They have stood by him before, including the time when his father threw him out of the house upon learning that he was a MSM. They visited him and sent him money and food wherever he was to keep him comfortable. The incident has been kept a secret between them to date. The perpetrators have never been apprehended.
PAUL He is clad in a blue shirt written “In trouble as usual”. His name is Paul, a sweet 7-year old boy who unfortunately did not get an opportunity to know his father , who died in 2003 just before he was born. After his father’s death, his mother eventually remarried and moved to Mikindani in Mombasa where Paul also now lives together with his mother, stepfather and step siblings. He has older siblings who live in Mombasa city and attends one of the local schools in the area. Paul is one of the many survivors of sodomy who have been able to access services at the GBVRC. Just like many other cases attended to at the centre, the perpetrator was someone well known and trusted by Paul and his family - a neighbour. The man, Juma really disguised himself well and passed the test of being the trusted friend and neighbour who even took measures to ensure Paul enjoyed numerous rides in his bicycle. He would come to Paul’s home and take him out on rides. They were best of friends despite the age difference. Paul’s mother estimates Juma’s age at about 30. She approved of and did not see anything wrong with the relationship. In fact she says that the fact that it was a friendship between her son and a fellow man, she did not suspect that the relationship could be hazardous. Had it been her daughter then she would have had reason to scrutinize the relationship further. On 20th April 2010 Paul and his friends were out playing together when suddenly one of the boys who is called Peter and who is Paul’s age mate started telling his peers about Juma and how he usually calls Paul to his house and makes him remove his clothes then “anamfanyia tabia mbaya” meaning he does to him ‘bad manners’. Call it being at the right place at the right time, a neighbour who knew Peter’s parents overheard this conversation. She was shocked. She quickly ran to inform Peter’s parents about what she had heard. Peter’s parents in turn told Paul’s mother. The parents (Peter’s and Paul’s) decided to take both the children to a health centre for check up. The results showed that both of them had been repeatedly sodomized. They both identified Juma as the perpetrator. According to Paul, “alinifanyia tabia mbaya kwao…alikuwa amenifanyia hivyo mara nyingi” meaning he sodomized me at his place many times. Paul further stated that Juma used to lure them with doughnuts then sodomize them. Both cases have been reported to the police who have been very helpful in following up and investigating the matters. The man will be arrested and the matter will be taken to court once investigations are complete. His mother is optimistic that justice shall be done. But as the families continue to pursue the case against Juma, Paul continues to struggle with yet another perpetual and ever-present problem. He has a distant and troubled look, evident not only on his face but also through his demeanour. He is also a victim of violence within the family. The perpetrator in this case being his cruel stepfather. A scar on the left side of his head just above his brow is evidence of this. The scar is as a result of a machete that was flung at him by his step father one day during a fit of anger. It landed on his head leaving a permanent scar which shall forever remain as a grim reminder of the difficult childhood he has had to live. Because of the cruel
treatment Paul detests his step father so much to the extent that he has never referred to him as father opting instead to call him by his first name. According to his mother Paul has sworn over and over again that when he grows up he must beat his step father. The mother has tried to keep Paul safe by sending him off to stay with his grandmother but then again due to lack of food his grandmother always sends him back to his mother and the abusive environment. Interestingly despite the harsh environment and the toll it has taken on him, his mother informed us that Paul continues to perform well in school.
The look in Paulâ€™s eyes is one of fear and trauma, the violence he faces will mark his life forever.
MICHELLE It is a cool Sunday afternoon when we arrive at Michelle’s home in Mshomoroni where she lives with her parents. She strikes one as a bubbly and intelligent girl. She speaks in fluent English punctuated with wise sayings and parables. She exudes so much confidence when she speaks that it is almost hard to believe that she is only 14 years old. Their house is set on a lofty hilltop with a great surrounding of houses, vegetation and hills. We were warmly welcomed to sit in the shadow of the house on a mat. Michelle is the first born in the family and will be sitting her national examinations to earn her entry to high school at the end of this year. Her parents are not worried about how she will perform as she has always been among the top five in her class. Apart from the occasional fiddle with the green and yellow “kanga” tied around her waist and occasional deep thought when she tells her story everything else about her seems so peaceful. This was one of the rare cases where we found that the child could openly talk to her parents about what happened. They were so warm and supportive to her. The father actually travelled miles from his place of work just to support his daughter during the interview. She most definitely is the apple of their eye. Her story starts on 10th June 2010 at her school which is a stone throw away from their house. At around 6.00pm, one of her father’s friends, Mr. M who is well known to Michelle, came and asked for permission from her teacher to allow Michelle to accompany him. Her mother supposedly had some luggage at his place and had asked him to come fetch her from school so that she could go and help her. Michelle had no reason not to believe him and thus agreed. On reaching Mr. M’s place, she was told that her mother had not arrived. Mr. M’s wife was there with their son who is also in primary school. Michelle asked Mr. M’s son to help her with a mathematics text book and which she used to do a bit of studying as she waited for her mother to come. After a few minutes Mr. M come back and told his wife and Michelle to accompany him to Michelle’s mother who was not far from there. They went to another house where they found a man, whom she later learned was a cousin to Mr. M’s wife. They entered the house, sat down and waited. After waiting for a few minutes Mr. M stood up and went out as if to receive phone a call. He then came back saying that Michelle’s mother had called him saying she was in the area but could not locate the place and that he had to go and get her. Immediately after Mr. M left, his wife asked to be excused to go to the toilet. Once she was out, she locked the room from outside. Michelle found this act weird but tried to calm herself saying she was coming back to open the door. She waited for a few minutes but the woman did not come back. She tried opening the door, it was still locked. All this time, the man inside had not uttered a word. Michelle knew it was getting late and she had to get home. She stood up and tried to open the door once more. The man told her it was fruitless because the woman had gone. Michelle tried using the man’s phone to call her but Mr. M’s phone had been switched off. She asked him to help her open the door to which he responded “You do not know they brought you here to be my wife...? Your uncle and my cousin are the ones who have planned this as your neighbours.” This made her even more scared. She tried the door again and started
screaming to attract attention whereupon the man told her “You had better come back. Even if you try to do anything you cannot get out of my hands... You are like a chick in the hands of an eagle,” he said. She started screaming. The man stood up with a knife in his hand and told her to calm down or he would hurt her. Michelle was scared so she kept herself calm. “Go and lie on the bed or I cut off your ear,” he told her. She complied out of fear. He came and sat next to her and started touching her. She took that opportunity and tried to wrestle the knife out of his hand. She succeeded and held on to the knife and swore to stab the man if he came near her. He then took out a machete and asked her which of the two weapons (knife or machete) was superior. Michelle dropped her knife. He ordered her to lie on the bed, and then proceeded to defile her throughout the night. He also sodomized her. The following morning, Mr. M’s wife came and unlocked the door and took Michelle to her house. Michelle told her that the man had defiled her and the woman gave her some tablets to take. She was in pain so she took the tablets hoping that the pain would go away. In the evening Mr. M’s wife took her to the man’s house again where he repeated what he did to her the previous night. The next day the woman came for her again. She took her to Tudor area where she dumped her in a bush close to a place where a burial ceremony was being conducted. A man found Michelle crying and quickly went to a house nearby and asked the occupants to come and see if they knew the lost girl. Coincidentally the house belonged to Michelle’s aunt. Her aunt was shocked and immediately took her to her house and called Michelle’s father who had been searching frantically for his daughter and had actually reported her missing on 10th June 2010.
Michelle’s aunt took her to her grandmother where her parents picked her up from. Together they went to the Police station where they recorded a statement and were later referred to the GBVRC where they were attended to by the nurses. The case has not yet gone to court but the police are still investigating the matter. Michelle is grateful to God for saving her from the evil people who had planned to marry her off as a second wife to a man who is married with children. She suspects that the motive behind their action was jealousy as she is doing well in school compared with the couple’s children who also attend the same school as her. She says that this incident will not put her down. She will continue to work hard to achieve her Scars still remind her of what happened but she is not dreams to become a doctor, a children’s right officer or a giving in, she says. “I will show them that they cannot soldier. get to me…”
Michelle’s father wisely encourages his daughter to speak: “think about it,” he says to her, “why should you not speak…”
Emotions overwhelm mama Michelle, and as her daughter speaks, she is silent.
Michelle finds comfort and a place to reflect under the mango tree near their humble, yet beautifully kept home.
Mariakani Girls Rescue Centreâ€™s rules and regulations
MARIAKANI GIRLS RESCUE CENTRE:
House of Love
On the outskirts of Mombasa, in a serene and quiet environment in Mariakani stands this house that one would mistake as someone’s residence. Its gate is black and boldly printed the words “Upendo House” which translated into English means “House of Love”. The atmosphere is full love and warmth. This is Mariakani Girls Rescue Centre, one of the few Rescue centres in Mombasa that gives hope to young girls who have experienced Gender Based Violence of one form or another in their lives. The Centre was founded with a mission to rescue abused girls who have no access to immediate help, especially those forced into early marriages, Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) and other forms of violence against women. The centre serves as a “drop-in point” for abused children and girls in need of special protection, where they are given all the services they require counselling, nutritional support, medical aid among other services. The Centre is currently housing 24 girls. All cases to the Centre must be referred through by the provincial administration. Ms. Sarah Nyamvula is the Director and founder of the Centre. She is very passionate about children’s issues especially the girl child. “I get very hysterical when children are punished in front of me. Even my family knows this,” she says. Sarah drew her passion to rescue and care for abused girls from things that she saw in her childhood. She says that she witnessed incest within her family. She recalls that for them as children it actually took time to talk about it as it was between older family members. It was long before they could even figure out that there was a big secret in the family. She says that as children they had to figure it out either by themselves or through neighbours’ hushing and gossiping and even when they did find out, they still did not know whether or not to talk to someone about it. “There are many issues in people holding back,” she tells us, referring to the silence that people keep around SGBV issues. It is with this background that she sought to establish the Mariakani Girls Rescue Centre with a mission to rehabilitate girls by providing them with a home in which their basic needs are catered for before placing them into appropriate institutions, to continue with either formal or non-formal education. As per the Children’s Act the girls can stay in institutions like hers for only 3 years. Thereafter they must be reintegrated back into the community. FACING
The centre has become a beacon for hope for many girls. Sarah tells us some of the tribulations that survivors of violence go through. “The shame that comes with sexual violence makes it quite difficult for many survivors to fully deal with the situation. Even in cases where one recovers there remains this baggage that one has to carry with them for years. Even where one gets married it is unlikely that they will tell their spouses and children of the experience they underwent and so they keep on carrying the baggage wondering what would happen if you told their family members,” she says. In cases of incest the issue of family protection remains a challenge in addressing Sexual violence. People hide issues under the guise of who is the provider? An example is one of the girls at the centre who was a survivor of incest and totally refused to press charges against her father based on the fact that she was worried about who would provide for the livelihood of her siblings who had been left behind. What the girl did not realize is that even her own mother was not going to stay married to her father after the incident. The mother eventually left the home with the rest of the children, but then again she too did not press charges. “The girl totally refused to press charges against her father. She told us she would never go to court yet when she wanted to be rescued she went through the administration. Despite the fact that she knew the avenue for being rescued she used economical consideration as a factor.” For Sarah it has not always been easy dealing with the cases received at the Centre. At the beginning, she as a service provider would experience immense trauma that manifested itself in form of anger. “Initially it was very difficult for me emotionally when I listened to the girls’ experiences. I had to learn to dissociate myself from the cases through counseling and concentrate more on the healing process. It is true that we as service providers get traumatized with the cases we deal with. You can thus imagine what the survivors who must live with these lifelong scars go through. People may heal but it just
The late sunlight gives a glow to this open house, a warm shelter for many girls
does not go away. The visionary area can never be cancelled. I wish it could be erased. I do not think there is any doctor who can cure it. One just has to learn to live with it.” As the institution takes the girls through the healing process the girls themselves also have their own way of healing one another. “The first girl we admitted was a case of attempted defilement thus not very damaging but for the fourth girl it was a terrible case of defilement. The rest of the girls saw the treatment that was accorded to this girl - the caring, the bowl of warm salty water she sat on etc. When the next defilement case came in, the girls themselves were able to take over the care and healing of this girl. They were there for her. As much as we were there we did not get involved because we knew that it was a healing process. Maybe not emotionally but physically,” she says. But just like any institution the Centre has its own challenges. These include lack of financial resources to cater for basics like food and school fees. Their first group of four candidates are due to sit for the Kenya Certificate of Primary Examinations (KCPE) and are all looking forward to joining high school next year. They hope to get a well wisher who will support the girls’ dreams. Lack of finances has also made it difficult to pursue justice for the girls due to lack of capacity to hire lawyers to follow up on the cases. Even where they are able to get lawyers to pursue the matters pro bono (free of charge) other attendant costs like transport costs for the lawyers still remain an obstacle. There have also been cases where the girls are reluctant to pursue legal remedies against the perpetrators. This mainly happens in cases where the perpetrator is a relative to the child e.g. a father, brother e.t.c. The centre also faces a legal hurdle through the provisions of the children Act, 2001 that states that children in such centres can only stay in the centres for a maximum of 3 years. This poses a challenge especially in cases of sexual violence within the family whereby the girls may find themselves back in the hazardous situation that they had been rescued from. The Measures the Centre has adopted to counter the above challenges include working closely with the girls relatives on an exit plan for the girls from the centre. The Centre also works closely with the provincial administration like area chiefs who mostly provide them with food. One of the really high moments for Sarah was the day that one of the girls who had been suffering from urinary incontinence for several months went dry. The complication was as a result of the sexual violence that she went through. “She was constantly wet. We had to line her bed and watch her wet herself publicly. My satisfaction was the day that the girl went dry. The excitement of seeing her dry is one thing that still makes me emotional to date. I really cried on that day,” she says. It makes her happy that some of the girls who have really gone through traumatic experiences have gone against the odds to still be very good performers in school. The girl who had the incontinence condition is one example of such girls. FACING
LYSHA “These rules can only be kept by one man, Jesus, the only man in this house. That is where I get my comfort,” she confidently tells us referring to the portrait titled ‘Rules for a Happy Marriage’ that has been mounted on the wall of her small but cosy two roomed house in Migadini, Mombasa. Meet Lysha, a 23 year old outspoken woman brought up by a single mother and the last born in a family of three (two sisters and one brother). She tells us that she particularly loves this house because of the privacy it accords her and her 3 ½ year old son whom she adores and guards jealously. “I am very proud of my son. He has given me a chance to live again. I like this house because it is safe for my son. It is indoors. I just want my son to be safe. I do not want to mess anywhere like it happened to me…” she says referring to the defilement she went through as a child. Lysha’s story is heartbreaking having undergone sexual abuse both as a child and later on in her adult life. The memories are all so fresh as she recounts her ordeal. It has taken a lot of effort to get where she is now and to forge on with life. Lysha is a sex worker and has been at it since the age of 12. She attributes her debut into sex work to the early childhood sexual violation by a person to whose care she had been entrusted. She was only 9 It is a tough road to get to Lysha’s house, in the middle years old when her mother of the Mombasa slum area, but she is glad to call it her got sick and had to be home, a place where she and her son feel safe, together. confined into a mental hospital. One of her mother’s best friends (whom they all referred to as aunty due to the closeness they shared) took her and her siblings in into her home in Malindi town where she lived with her husband. Lysha’s sister and brother were enrolled into a school immediately they moved in, while Lysha was told to stay at home and wait. The couple did not have any children of their own. Their aunty was a business woman, while her husband (whom they also referred to as uncle) was a taxi driver. Little did she know that moving into this home would be the beginning of her nightmare. During the day she would be left alone in the house with her “uncle” who mostly conducted his taxi business at night and hence caught up on lost sleep during the day. Her “uncle” used the opportunity to defile her over and over without any care day in day out. “Come here and sleep with me, he would tell me,” she says. “I used to go because I feared him. He was the owner of the house. I told my aunt
about it but she did not believe me. In fact she would beat me up saying that I was lying. One day she found blood on my panties but she did not say anything. She must have been ashamed. She also feared the man,” Lysha says. She continually tried to reach out to her aunty to no avail. The only other person she could talk to was her mother but every time she visited her at the hospital she was not in a position to talk. “I wish my mum was there so that I could share this with her. But she was so sick and always screaming,” she says. The defilement continued until she was 12 years old when she decided to run away. “I felt bad. I could not bear it anymore. I ran away at 12,” she says. This was the beginning of her life as a sex worker. She joined a group of girls in Malindi who influenced her into sex work. Here she says she found comfort. As a sex worker Lysha has been able to go through various challenges and experiences over the years. An example is an encounter she went through in the hands of law enforcement officers when she was 21 years old and living in Mombasa. The experience has scarred her for life and made her lose faith in the very people she trusted to provide her with security. It was one night in 2008. Lysha and four of her colleagues were working on the streets of Baroda in Mombasa when a car approached them. The occupants wanted group sex. The four girls obliged but Lysha who had reservations about group sex declined and was thus left behind with two other Male Sex Workers who were also sourcing for clients. Soon the male sex workers also left and she was left alone on the street. As she was standing there a group of eight men came to her, they were “chokoras” (a term used to refer people who live in the streets). She was quite skimpily dressed and they started playing with her body, touching her all over. Lysha sensed danger, she removed her shoes held them in her hand and when she got the opportunity she ran as fast as she could. “I took off my shoes. I was just running like a mad woman. When I stopped there were car lights. When I looked it was a police car. Eeeh! I am rescued.” When the men who were chasing her saw the police car they left retreated. She approached the car and thanked God for bringing them at that very time to save her. She was safe now. The police men were five in number. They told her to get into the car and started asking her questions, “Ingia ndani.Unafanya nini mpaka saa hii? Wewe ni malaya? Wapi I.D ?” meaning “Get in. What are you doing out here at this time? Are you a sex worker? Where is your identity card?” Lysha tried to respond to their questions politely with the hope that they would release her and not take her to the police station, since she did not have her identity card. “They were worse than the chokoras. They kept on playing with my body like a ball. I could not scream because they were policemen. I thought they were saving me from the chokoras. I was wrong,” she says. They drove around with her in the car until they got to a bush where they stopped. They pushed her outside the car and into the bush. They raped her in turns. They did not leave it at this when they were done. They bundled her back into the car and drove her to one of the policemen’s houses. For two days they locked her in this house. During this time they would to take breaks from work to come and rape her. They also made her do all
the household work and their laundry. They turned her into their domestic and sex slave. “They made me their sex pet,” she says. She was only released after another woman was brought in to take her place. “It was too painful because the police are to bring peace. They are the ones who are raping and harassing us. I even requested for them to have me charged in a court of law and they threatened to fabricate the charges,” she says. After being released Lysha spoke to a friend who advised her to go the GBVRC to get medical attention as 72 hours had not yet lapsed. She was able to get medical attention but contracted a Sexually Transmitted Infection that is recurrent to date. Lysha was not able to report the errant policemen due to fear of victimization and criticism.” How can I report such a case? The police themselves are their very own. Can there be a case really?” she poses. Out of this experience Lysha has learnt to take measures to keep herself safe. She has since stopped doing street work and now confines her activities to hot spots/clubs. She nowadays does thorough negotiations with potential clients to avoid incidences of physical or sexual violence and also ensures that at least one of her friends knows where she is with a client and how much time she will be taking with him. She has also learnt to rely on her instincts when picking clients.
We asked her what she felt about being a sex worker and she said she is quite satisfied with her life as it is. And as much as her married neighbours feel insecure that she may “snatch” away their husbands they still rely on her to advise them on various issues affecting their reproductive health as she is a peer educator and understands the issues. She says she is not afraid to testify openly and warn other girls on the dangers of sex work and how to keep safe.
In her whole life Lysha was badly treated, without any respect. Now she finds power and security in timing her work and her clients. She decides, she is in control …
She earns her living well and can provide for her son, who she covers with love and for whom she wishes the best life. She will never allow and does not need another man in her life againâ€Ś
ANNE Anne is an extremely beautiful 25-year old single mother living in Mombasa in a small tastefully furnished one roomed house that one would mistake for a teenager’s room. The big music system (radio) and posters of internationally renowned musicians plastered all round her walls testify to the fact that she is a great lover of music. She is also an ardent fan of Manchester United football club. Her father died when she was young and since her mother did not have means to support them she and her brothers’ had to find ways to fend for themselves. Her brothers ended up getting into the drugs business and she into sex work to make a living. When Anne first got into sex work she was very naïve and did not have information on safe sex to prevent amongst other things pregnancy, STIs and HIV. One night in 2006 when she was about 20 years old she got a client with whom they had unprotected sexual intercourse. He paid her well and went away. One month later she missed her periods and that is when it dawned on her that she may be pregnant with the client’s child. She thought through it wondering if she really wanted to have the baby. She says that this stressed her out because not only did she not know the child’s father but also that she did not have any source of income. She already had another 2 ½ years old child to take care of and could not accommodate an extra mouth. There was no way she was going to have this baby she resolved. This was the beginning of her quest to find a solution to terminate the pregnancy. Due to lack of money she resorted to having it done using the cheapest means possible. At this time Anne was still staying at home with her mother and thus had to also ensure that her action would be discreet and not raise any suspicion. She ruled out the hospital as it would be too costly for her. She solicited advice from friends who gave her various options to address the “problem”. One of her friends, also a sex worker and who had previously procured an abortion through a health facility advised her to buy a tablet called “Subili”, dissolve it in water and drink. She did so but nothing happened. The foetus remained intact. Her second attempt also through the advice of another friend was to buy a 500ml bottle of Coca Cola soda, boil until it was about 100ml hence concentrated and then drink it. She tried this too and again nothing happened. She was now getting worried as the foetus in her stomach was growing and she had been informed that the more advanced the pregnancy, the more expensive it would be to terminate. The pregnancy was now 1 ½ to 2 months old. Besides, very soon the pregnancy would start being visible and her family would know. She knew she had to act fast. Finally, one of her friends who was reputed to be knowledgeable on the issues told her about a woman based in Magongo, Mombasa who was renowned for procuring abortions and whose prices were quite reasonable ranging between Kshs 200 and Kshs 500. Apart from this, she was also very discrete. No one would know. Her friend helped her to get an appointment with the woman. Anne opted to go in the evening at around 6.00pm so that any bleeding would happen during the night and hence not attract
attention. When she got to the woman’s house she was asked to lie down on her back and part her legs. She did. The woman then proceeded to insert an instrument which Anne says looked like a pin with a hook into her vagina. The excruciating pain that tore through Anne’s body is one that she shudders to date when she recalls. The pain tore through her body like wild fire. She was still trying to comprehend the pain when the woman told her to wake up and go home. Her work was done. She had pricked “nyumba ya mtoto” meaning house of the baby (uterus). All that remained now was for Anne to go home. She would bleed through the night and experience some pain but by morning she would feel better and the foetus will have been expelled. By the time she arrived home, Anne was in so much pain. Her mother was concerned but she told her she was just tired. She went off to bed. That night ended up being the longest night ever in Anne’s life. She bled profusely throughout the night and was in so much pain but could not tell anyone because she knew that what she was doing was wrong. By morning she felt too weak due to excessive blood loss. When her mother queried again she informed her that it was just a minor stomach ache. She was taken to a health centre that was close to their house where the doctors disclosed to Anne’s mother the truth. Anne was trying to procure an abortion. She was given post abortion care, treated for Genital Tract Infection (GTI) contracted from the instruments used by the woman and was discharged to go home. Her mother was not pleased with what Anne had done and she used this to pick up fights with Anne each time an opportunity presented itself after that. She would harass and
insult her. There was no peace in Anne’s life. Her mother became a constant reminder of what she had gone through. She only wishes her mother had taken time to understand the reason why she did what she did instead of being quick to condemn and shun her.” I wish she knew that I did not do it because I wanted to,” she says. Eventually she decided to move out of home and went to stay with friends who were also sex workers. Life there was not very good. They were too many girls living under one roof. She managed to eventually rent her own place in Chaani. Anne was lucky to have been saved from death and be treated for the GTI contracted. Her dream is to one day get married and have more children. Sadly though, the doctors informed her that her uterus was severely damaged and in the future it would be very difficult for her to carry a baby in her womb, unless she is put on complete bed rest. Even so it is still not guaranteed that she would carry it to term. “I regret what I did but it was not my wish. What I did still haunts me to date. I still cringe when I think of the pain,” she concludes.
Anne takes pleasure in dressing up, going out and taking care of herself. She is also a big Manchester United fan
NADIA Nadia is a 24-year lady who enjoyed a really great childhood. Her father was one of the wealthiest people in her area which guaranteed her and her siblings a good life. She had always dreamt of becoming a pilot engineer and all indicators were that this was a dream she would be able to achieve. Her family was not only able to afford it but she also had the brains to go on with it. Her grades in school were very good. However as fate would have it, all this crumbled one day when her father lost all his property due to a bad deal. They were reduced from riches to rags. They had to move from the big house they had and from private to public schools. Eventually she and her siblings had to drop out of school. By this time Nadia was in form 2 and just about 16 years old. For Nadia all her big dreams were shattered. Her family could not make ends meet thus forcing her to look for odd jobs here and there to be able to survive. She started off by working at a clothes making industry in Mombasa. She did this for some time but the conditions were quite poor and challenging, forcing her to quit. In 2002, one of her friends introduced her to sex work. The friend started by taking her to Mtwapa, Mombasa during the weekends when business was at its peak to enable her master the trade. Slowly by slowly she got absorbed into the trade and is a sex worker to date. Nadia and her friends used to solicit in groups for clients in the streets. One day in 2002, as she was out in the streets with her friends, a vehicle pulled by and the driver who was white skinned singled out Nadia .He wondered loudly why a young girl like her was out in the streets doing sex work. He asked her to accompany him. She was aged 17 at the time. Being picked by a white skinned client is considered a “kill” and most sex workers usually yearn for this. Her friends encouraged her to go since it could be her lucky night. The man took her to his cottage of which the location she cannot clearly remember, but was somewhere around Mtwapa. They drove into his compound and got into his house. When they entered the room Nadia got scared and her immediate instinct was to run. There were a lot of weird things all over the room. Her first thought was that the man was a magician. He had a pot which was boiling, 3 stones, clown masks, wigs, red sheets and many other things that Nadia does not want to recall. The place was simply spooky. The man led her to a bedroom and left her there for a while as he went out (of the bedroom) and came back with a big stick. He told her to undress. Nadia was so afraid .All she wanted was to go home. Then suddenly the man started caning her with the stick he was carrying. Her cries and pleas for him to stop fell on deaf ears. He continued beating her then stripped her naked, threw her on the bed and sodomized her. He did not use a condom. What happened next shall forever be arched in Nadia’s memory. It was all like a bad dream. When the man was done he called out a name and through the door a huge black snake came slithering towards Nadia. It kept advancing towards her. It got to her and onto the bed and started licking Nadia all over her body at the man’s command. She was frozen in fear. When the snake was through it slithered back the same way it had come in and the man descended on Nadia again. He raped her over and over and only stopped when he got tired. He
threw her out the following morning without paying her a cent. “He threw me out in broad daylight. I was skimpily dressed but did not care. All I wanted was to get away from him. I walked like a mad woman. They were all looking at me thinking I was mad,” she says. She was too traumatized to ever tell anyone what she had gone through. Even to the friend whose house she went to after the ordeal, all she said was that she had been mugged by thieves. She could not stay in Mombasa anymore. She was too afraid and traumatized. She quickly packed her things and moved to Nairobi where she stayed with her aunty as she tried to figure out what had happened to her. She eventually came back to Mombasa 4 years later in 2006 and slowly went back to sex work as she had to sustain herself. It is only in 2007 that she was able to speak about it for the first time to a man whom she met at a club and opened up to. He was able to refer her for trauma counselling at KEMRI. She has been undergoing the counseling for 3 years now. She says the sessions have really helped her to get over what she went through though she has not yet fully recovered. She never reported the matter to the police for fear of how they would treat her being that she is a sex worker. She hopes to find a ‘normal’ job one day and hence stop sex work. Her dreams of becoming a pilot engineer have not been dashed. She says that she is ready to go back to high school and pick up from where she left, get an “O” Level Certificate and hopefully pursue the career of her dreams.
Working on the street is hard… Nadia is happy that she can return to her home, watch movies and that she does not have to share her bathroom with anyone else…
She wants to get out of this life and have a proper job…
LINA Lina is one of the girls at the Mariakani Girls Rescue Centre. When you first meet her, you would think she is extremely shy. She could hardly speak more than a few words with us when we started speaking to her, but by the end of our interview she had totally opened up to us and even asked questions. It was amazing to watch the transformation in the 16-year old girl who is the fouth born in her family and hails from Kaloleni, Kilifi. Like the other 23 girls, the Centre has provided her with a safe and loving environment that has been her home for the last three years. Hers is a story of hope for children survivors of GBV. A series of events in her life from the tender age of 10 are what eventually led to her rescue and eventual placement into the home. Lina lived a normal life like any other child. She lived with her family and even attended school. However at the age of 9 ½ years, lack of finances by the family led to her eventual drop out from school. Her parents decided to let her stay home for a whole term (three months). During this time, Lina’s mother went to stay at their farm house for a while and Lina was left home with her father. The father used this opportunity and plotted to marry her off to one of the old men in the village who was looking for a young girl to marry. Her father told her that he was going to marry her off to the old man. Lina did not like the idea. She refused and ran away to her grandmother’s place. She stayed there for some time before her mother came for her. Luckily for her, the planned marriage did not take place. Lina continued staying at the family home until one day one of her cousins told Lina’s mother that she could help Lina to get a job instead of having her just staying at home doing nothing. The mother loved the idea. She allowed Lina’s cousin to go away with her. The cousin was able to secure for Lina employment as a house help with one of the families living in Mombasa. The terms of payment was Kshs 800 per month which Lina’s cousin would come and collect at the end of every month. She stayed with this family for three years doing laundry, cleaning the house and cooking for them amongst other chores. She was also tasked with the responsibility of taking the couples two children to school and back daily. Lina tells us that all this work was too much for her. She was merely 10 years old. To make things worse the mother of the house was quite cruel to her and would shout at her at every opportune moment. At times she would even beat up Lina. An example is one day when the woman went to work and forgot to leave money for lunch. As per routine Lina picked up the children from school but since there was no food in the house she could not offer them anything to eat for lunch. When the lady came back in the evening she would hear nothing of it and even accused Lina of lying. Lina says that the cruel treatments made her feel quite bad and she longed to go back home to her parents, whom For Lina she was a young girl in a lonely world of her own. She did not have anyone to share what she was going through. Neighbours who were suspicious of the ill treatment rescued Lina and took her to some
women advocates. The women took her to the children department who then referred her to the centre. The centre took her in, in the year 2006 and she has been living there since. Through the centre she has been able to go back to school after having been enrolled in class three at the age of 13. She is now in class six and very happy. She looks to the future in expectation. She has also been able to get basic needs and above all friends who identify with and understand her situation. She is very grateful to Mama Mkubwa (Sarah) for all the kind assistance. She later got to learn that her parents did not get to receive even a single cent of the money she had worked for. Linaâ€™s cousin never forwarded the money she collected from Linaâ€™s employer for the three years she was employed. She is happy that she now has information on her rights. She has a passion for football a game that she enjoys playing with the rest of the girls whom she thanks God for as they have been very supportive.
She is hesitant to talk but slowly opens up. This girl is not lost, she just needs trust...
“The girls at the centre are nice to me, I like hanging out with them, to talk and to do chores together…”
Lina proudly shows us her bed and her doll Lina, a comfort to her at night…
GLOSSARY ABORTION: an operation or other intervention to end a pregnancy by removing an embryo or foetus from the womb. ACQUIRED IMMUNE DEFICIENCY SYNDROME (AIDS): When the HIV destroys the cells in the immune system, the host becomes seriously ill (with a combination of different illnesses), and at such stage such person is described to be having AIDS. ANTI-RETROVIRAL DRUGS (ARV): Drugs used to fight HIV so that the onset of HIV is delayed or averted. CIRCUMSTANTIAL EVIDENCE: Indirect evidence that implies something occurred but does not directly prove it e.g. if a man accused of embezzling money from his company had made several big purchases in cash around the time of the alleged embezzlement, that would be circumstantial evidence that he had stolen the money. CONTRACEPTION: The use of artificial of natural means to avoid conception, or pregnancy e.g. the pill, condoms. Sometimes called birth control. DEFILEMENT: An act that causes penetration (of the genital organs) of a child. DISCRIMINATION: To treat someone less favourably (and usually unfairly) than another on the basis of e.g. race, sex, religion, age etc. FORENSIC EVIDENCE: Evidence that is obtained by the application of scientific methods and is susceptible to use in court proceedings; examples include medical evidence such as obtained through DNA testing or pathological examination of a deceased person. FEMALE GENITAL MUTILATION: The excision or tissue removal of any part of the female genitalia for cultural, religious or other non-medical reasons. HUMAN IMMUNODEFICIENCY VIRUS (HIV): The virus that attacks the bodyâ€™s immune system and which can lead to AIDS. HIV STATUS: Whether someone has tested HIV positive or HIV negative. HIV TRANSMISSION: the passing of HIV from one person to another. HOMOSEXUAL: Having an attraction (which at times may be sexual) to persons of the same sex. POLYGAMY/POLYGAMOUS: When a man marries more than one wife. POST EXPOSURE PROPHYLAXIS (PEP): Prophylaxis means a defense or protection.
PEP means taking anti-retroviral therapy after being exposed to HIV e.g. after rape. PEP must be administered as soon as possible but within 72 hours for it to be effective. POST-ABORTION CARE: Care for a woman following a spontaneous or induced abortion. Comprehensive post-abortion care services should include both medical and preventive healthcare. PROSECUTOR: The chief legal representative of the prosecution, which is the legal party responsible for presenting a case in a criminal trial against an individual, suspected of breaking the law. RAPE: Having sexual intercourse with a woman without her consent. REPRODUCTIVE HEALTH: A state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity, in all matters relating to the reproductive system, and to its functions and processes. It therefore implies that people are able to have a satisfying and safe sex life and that they have the capability to reproduce and the freedom to decide if, when and how often to do so. SAFE SEX: Having sex with a condom or in another way which has no risk or a very small risk of HIV transmission. Also a way of reducing the risk of contracting getting other sexually transmitted Infections (STIs) or getting pregnant. SEXUALLY TRANSMITTED INFECTION (STI) OR VENEREAL DISEASE (VD): An illness that has a significant probability of transmission between humans or animals by means of human sexual behavior, including vaginal intercourse, oral sex, and anal sex. SODOMY: Anal intercourse committed by a man with a man or woman, the act of which may be punishable as a criminal offense in certain jurisdictions. STIGMA/STIGMATISATION/STIGMATISE: Negative social label showing the prejudices of some people e.g. the stigma of living with HIV. VIOLATE: Abuse or not respect e.g. violate your right to human dignity. VULNERABLE: When someone is open to or at risk of abuse, discrimination or exploitation.
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“Facing Violence – Unveiling Sexual and Gender Based Violence (SGBV) Issues in Kenya” A multimedia project to unveil SGBV issues in Mombasa, Kenya This booklet gives you a brief but humanistic idea on SGBV in Mombasa: in stories, photographs, facts & figures, together with shortcomings and their consequences.
ICRH Kenya International Centre for Reproductive Health - Mombasa