Feminenza in Kenya
Feminenza Kenya, formally incorporated on 24th April 2008 with registration number C. 153691, based in Nairobi, is part of an international women’s network, consisting of 350 professionals, leaders and educators from 15 countries. The mission: ‘to encourage every woman’s future, and work towards a better mutuality between the genders’. Our priorities are to support UNSCR 1624, UNSCR 1325, and MDG3 by (i) developing the contribution of women to fostering a culture of peace, ii) strengthening the role of women in leadership, (iii) combating violence against women and girls through gender education for both genders. Furthermore our work supports SDG5 (Gender Equality) and SDG16 (Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions).
Feminenza Kenya has special consultative status with ECOSOC, (the Economic and Social Council of the UN), in the field of the Advancement of Women. The National Cohesion and Integration Commission (NCIC) acknowledges Feminenza Kenya as a stakeholder for conflict resolution and peacebuilding work; our profile is in the NCIC databank. UN WOMEN, SIDA and Global Communities view Feminenza Kenya as a trusted partner.
Feminenza Kenya’s work commenced in 2005, initially with UNESCO PEER’s Culture of Peace Network, with whom we organized in 2006 a 4-day event entitled ‘Humanity and Gender’ at the UN compound in Nairobi, to which 300 NGO representatives from the Great Lakes Region attended.
In 2008 we led Transformative Leadership workshops in Mombasa serving 60 women from 18 Coastal Region CBOs.
Note: The outbreak of COVID-19 has prevented the further roll out of our Trauma Healing Community Resilience Development workshop (previously called Trauma Healing Workshop) and our intention is to train a group of practitioners to deliver this workshop on a regular basis.
In 2017 the 5-day Trauma Healing workshop was delivered for 24 members of the Council of Elders and members of the Peace Committee from sub-counties of Nakuru: Nakuru Town East, Nakuru Town West, Molo, GilGil and Naivasha. The intervention provided by Feminenza was part of a larger project led by the NCPBC entitled: ‘Enhancing relations and collaboration of the local actors for peace and security’ and was supported by Coffey’s the Jamii Thabiti Programme and the Nakuru County Peace Building Consortium (NCPBC). It allowed community leaders to go through a transformational process and come to a shared message about peace and forgiveness during the elections which had an impact on stepping down violence and conflict.
In 2015 and 2016 we delivered provided 2 successful workshops for Global Communities:
In 2016 a 5-day Trauma Healing workshop was delivered for 30 beneficiaries of the PEPFAR/USAID funded DREAMS (Determined, Resilient, Empowered, AIDS-Free, Mentored and Safe) programme from the Kamukunji Sub-County of Nairobi City County. The DREAMS initiative helps girls to build resilience, self-esteem and to combat exposure to HIV AIDS. This program supports the US Global Strategy to Empower Adolescent Girls. Global Communities sponsored the workshop, working in partnership with two local organizations – St John’s Community Centre (SJCC) and the Kenya Girl Guide Association (KGGA) to identify the 30 Adolescent Girls and Young Women (AGYW) who could most benefit from this program. The impact of our intervention has been crucial for the girls in their healing of past trauma and to be able to make best use of the opportunity of the PEPFAR/DREAMS initiative. Most of the participants became leaders within their community and were able to share their learning with peers.
In 2015 a two week ( 2 x 5 days) we conducted a trauma healing and capacity building workshop for 60 beneficiaries of the USAID funded Kenya Tuna Uwezo programme from the informal settlements of Nairobi. Global Communities sponsored the training and mobilized local partner organizations to identify the 60 participants ranging from Non-governmental Organization networks, Community Based Organizations, Faith Based Organizations, Self-help Groups, Youth Organizations, District Peace Committees, Community Policing Initiatives, Residence Associations, Uwezo Fund, Youth Cohesion Champions and Individual Community Volunteers. Participants were from both Muslim and Christian faiths. Participants were strengthened in their role as Cohesion Champions for the community and reflected that the tools given during the workshop workshop had an impact at a personal level but also continued to assist them in their work with the community in stepping down conflict.
Our 1-year UNSCR 1325 ‘People2People’ initiative in the Rift Valley, Kenya in 2010-2011 following the Post Election Violence in 2007/2008 trained 20 women leaders to become Forgiveness and Reconciliation Counselors. It enabled grassroots women in the communities most at risk (i) to reach across party and tribal lines to secure peace and security; (ii) to play a decisive role in conflict mitigation; (iii) to grow the inner development to help individuals and groups re-humanize each other, foster empathy and mutual understanding, build trust and create healthy relationships, as a basis for long term reconciliation. 20 rural women activists, each conducted their own community peace intervention project in Nakuru, Kericho, Borabu, Sotik, Kisii, Burnt Forest, Mt Elgon, Pokot and Turkana, and were assisted with training and mentoring about fear management, forgiveness, project planning and accountability, and media strategy. The community impact was considerable, with 5000 confirmed beneficiaries and independently verifiable outcomes. The women leaders trained still substantially contribute to the cohesion and security of their communities. Some of the trainees help us in our training programmes, others have become Board members of Feminenza Kenya.
Understanding and Managing Fear Workshop, Nakuru 2009
This report presents the thoughts, experiences and recommendations from participants that emanated from a May 2009 Feminenza workshop, entitled ‘How to understand, confront and handle fear in a constructive way’. The workshop served as an introduction to elements of module 1 of Feminenza’s training for Forgiveness and Reconciliation Counsellors, which has been created to train women in their own communities as Forgiveness and Reconciliation Counsellors so that they can effectively contribute to sustainable peace.
Extract from Feminenza’s Humanity and Gender Conference, Nairobi 2006
In January 2006, a conference took place in Kenya, at the United Nations headquarters in Nairobi, hosted by Feminenza International in association with UNESCO PEER, entitled ‘Humanity and Gender, a Gathering of Vision in a Time of Change’ (Utu na Undugu). Speakers and delegates came from all over the Great Lakes region of East Africa and from around the world, and during four days of intensive process, many vital issues were raised which affect both men and women – now and into the future. This book is a record of the keynote speeches and other presentations given at the conference by invited guests, many highly distinguished figures in their own field.