225 pupils from three primary schools in Homa Bay County have been enrolled on a program that uses technology to sensitize and educate them on sexual and gender based violence.
The pupils have received tablets that have online lessons they use to learn about sexual violence and what should be done in case they are offended or witness someone else being violated.
This program aims to help minors from falling prey to sex pests as the beneficiaries are equipped with skills and knowledge of how to respond and are able to advise and help GBV survivors.
It targets children aged between 10 to 15 years who will receive a six months training on SGBV.
They are taught how to use the electronics under the virtual justice curriculum. At least 12 lessons are contained in the machines, including background information about the program.
The lessons teaches children signs to look out for if someone is violated and whom to report to.
Other lessons includes defilement investigations steps and what should be done if a child finds herself or himself sexually abused. Part of what they learn is how to collect evidence, which is crucial to court prosecution.
The programme is called 160 Girls Project and is being implemented by Equality Effect Organisation through Community Aids Transformation Alliance Group, a NGO dealing with child protection. Homa Bay, Kilifi and Kwale are the only counties implementing it.
Ms Patricia Simiyu, the programme officer Community Aids Transformation Alliance Group says the idea came after a GBV survivor lost a case in court because of shallow investigations.
“The court told security offices to ensure they conduct professional and proper investigations in cases of sexual offences to prosecute perpetrators. We began by training police officers and now training children to be champions in their communities for them to report cases of sexual offences.” She said.
Homa Bay has one of the highest incidence of defilement ranked in the third position according Kenya Demographic Health Survey 2022 report ranked the county at 23 percent prevalence rate.