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Showing posts from December, 2015

Huffington Post: The Tyranny of Violence Against Women and Girls: 16 Days of Activism

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According to the 2014 Kenya Demographic and Health Survey of Kenya, 4 out of every 10 Kenyan women undergo some form of violence, whether physical or sexual. This figure is staggering and should compel us to pause and reflect. This year's 16 Days of Activism Against Gender Violence once again gives us a chance to contemplate a phenomenon that may be as insidious as a woman getting thrown down the stairs by her husband within the home to the horrors that take place in conflict zones when soldiers/militias run amok and go on a savage raping spree. The Pope said that violence against women needs to be dealt with. He said at a Mass at the University of Nairobi on Thursday, 26 Nov 2015 that, "In obedience to God's word, we are called to resist practices which hurt or demean women and threaten the life of the unborn." This year's theme - 'From Peace in the Home to Peace in the World' - focuses on a factor that has not been spoken about loudly enough: that viol…

Reuters: From Despair to Hope: Fulfilling a Promise to Mothers and Children in Mandera County

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The First Lady of Kenya Ms Margaret Kenyatta accompanied by the Governor of Mandera County Mr Ali Roba & UNFPA's Executive Director Dr Babatunde Osotimehin at the Beyond Zero event in Mandera. 06 Nov 2015. Mandera/PC: @undpkenya

Mandera in north-eastern Kenya, has often been described as ‘the worst place on earth to give birth’. Mandera’s maternal mortality ratio stands at 3,795 deaths per 100,000 live births, almost double that of wartime Sierra Leone at 2,000 deaths per 100,000 live births. But Mandera also demonstrates what can be achieved with strong political leadership and strategic partnerships.  Just under a year ago, on Dec. 2 2014, we were part of a team from the United Nations, World Bank, charities and the Office of the President of Kenya that undertook the two-hour flight to Mandera, to determine what could be done to address this critical development bottleneck. Minutes before take-off, news came through that 36 Kenyans had been brutally murdered in Mandera by th…