*Work towards a more transparent and accountable society*
PTN employs different methodologies in enhancing the capacities of community members on Citizenship, Good Governance, and Leadership. This is made possible through conducting community workshops, forums, and training on Civic and Voter Education and Social Accountability.
1. Public Participation for Effective Governance
Like one of my colleagues would say “Covid-19 caught us all off guard!”, and such was the case in Kwale county as well. Hence the implementation of the subsequent activities with an aim of improving public participation for effective governance with respect to the Covid-19 pandemic. The activities were made possible through partnering with the Ministry of health targeting Boda Boda riders, tuk-tuk drivers, and vulnerable households. Below are the activities that were undertaken
COVID-19 sensitization exercise; here the boda boda riders and tuk tuk drivers were the main recipients. The sessions here were facilitated by the ministry of health officials who provided information on the disease, how it spreads, how to prevent and effective ways of hand cleaning and wearing of face masks. A total of 390 participants were taken through the exercise. This exercise was conducted in Ramisi and Kinondo Wards from the 2nd to 4th June 2020.
Dissemination of information; Peace Tree Network designed and put up COVID-19 posters in places with high foot traffic. The posters were in English, Kiswahili, Digo and Duruma language to ensure that all community members were able to read and understand the message being passed. This was done from the 2nd – 4th June 2020 during the sensitization exercise with the boda boda and tuk tuk drivers. To include the community, we hired a public address system that was not only used to address our target group but the surrounding community members also received the message.
Provision of PPE; we provided water tanks, face masks, and liquid soap to the identified passengers waiting f for boda boda and tuk tuk in Msambweni sub-county. This was to ensure that these riders and drivers would continue to practice good hygiene and help in preventing the outbreak of the disease and also to protect themselves and their clients. Face masks were provided to all participants that we engaged as well as some community members. This was done on the 2nd to 4th June 2020.
Community sensitization and outreach; here the public health officers conducted sensitization exercises as well as taught community members on home based isolation and care of the affected persons in the identified villages within the sub-county. This exercise was important as the health facilities are unable to provide effective care to all individuals affected by the disease and therefore home care has been incorporated in the treatment of COVID-19 patients who are not in need of hospitalization. This exercise was conducted from the 20th – 24th July 2020. We also provided face masks and liquid soap to households that took part in the exercise. Also included in the facilitation were community health assistants who are important in the home-based isolation and care in the fight against COVID-19. Approximately 200 households in 40 Villages in Msambweni became beneficiaries
2. Citizenship and Good Governance
Ever pictured being a squatter in a place you’ve lived for over 80 years? Imagined living a life of statelessness, whereby you are unable to enjoy the rights and freedoms that a citizen in the same country is entitled to? For instance not being able to move freely, open a business, and do normal transactions or even further one’s education from the primary level. This has been the life of the Makonde community in Kenya up until the year 2016 when they acquired citizenship. It’s been 3 years since they started adapting to the new form of living.
In line with the above, PTN saw it fit to enlighten the community further on the holistic view of citizenship and how it plays a major role in fostering good governance. The discussions were also tailor-made to encourage women to take up leadership positions. This follows the concern of having no single elected woman out of the twenty electoral wards in Kwale County aside from Ms. Chidzuga.
These training sessions were held in the month of July, August, and December 2019 in Lunga Lunga, Msambweni, and Matuga Sub-County respectively, accommodating a total of 60 participants.
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