ERADICATING VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN

Kibra group encourages women to take back power over their bodies

The organisation has launched a virtual and physical movement is aimed at getting women to have full body autonomy

In Summary

• Speaking to the Star on phone, Nassur, the movemnet's convener said that the campaign is geared towards mobilising and organising women and girls to empower them to unapologetically speak out against acts of violence against women.

• “We want to strengthen them and empower them with a community behind them so they will be able to speak out without fear and make decisions concerning their bodies and their sexuality, free from coercion and violence,” she said.

County officials and local activists join residents of Modogashe in procession during the marking of 16 days of activism against gender-based violence in a past event.
PROCESSION County officials and local activists join residents of Modogashe in procession during the marking of 16 days of activism against gender-based violence in a past event.
Image: STEPHEN ASTARIKO

Women and girls often have little control over cultural practices, government policies, and patriarchal belief systems in society.

This sees women exposed to violence and harm on their bodies through actions such as rape, Female Genital Mutilation, intimate partner violence, and lack of access to sexual reproductive health resources.

A community-based organisation in Kibra constituency has launched a campaign to empower women to take back power over their bodies and health rights.

Superb CBO launched Free My Body movement on Thursday at a virtual event on their Twitter platform with the hashtag #FreeMyBody to commemorate the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women.

The campaign will also run simultaneously with the 16 days of Activism Against gender-based violence.

Yasmin Mohammed Nassur, the Founder of Superb, said that the movement will go beyond the 16 days of activism and become a virtual movement to rally for complete body autonomy for women and girls.

Speaking to the Star on phone, Nassur said that the campaign is geared towards mobilising and organising women and girls to empower them to unapologetically speak out against acts of violence against women.

“We want to strengthen them and empower them with a community behind them so they will be able to speak out without fear and make decisions concerning their bodies and their sexuality, free from coercion and violence,” she said.

The CBO will work together with other rights groups to reach out to women and girls across Nairobi county and with time, beyond.

“We will empower young feminists by convening county feminist talking circles, feminist mentorship sessions, feminist advocacy, virtual movement-building sessions, and self-care and healing from acts of violence,” said Nassur.

The campaign comes at a time when violence against women and girls is on the rise.

The ministry of Gender and Public Service reported a 92 per cent rise in gender-based cases during the pandemic.

It also reported that over a period of three months during the start of lock-down, 152,000 teenage girls became pregnant, a 40 per cent increase in the country's monthly average.

Nassur said the campaign will also advocate for Sexual Reproductive Health Rights for women and girls to help stop the surge of unplanned teenage pregnancies.

She also said that they will work in the prevention and elimination of all forms of violence against women and girls as well as respond to such cases in the community.

Edited by D Tarus