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Creation of Community Health and Conflict Scouts and Monitors in Pastoralist Communities of northern Kenya

I would like to accesses, sensitize and provide sexual reproductive services to women and girls in northern Kenya

Photo of Ashley Tillman
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What specific problem(s) are you trying to address?

I am going to try to create an inventory of common sexual and reproductive health problems affecting girls and women with an aim of getting strategies of addressing them. I will then identify more scouts and monitors to help build a data base on sexual and reproductive health issues challenges affecting women and girls. Then I will seek to provide adequate training and capacity building to the women and girls on how to deal with these sexual and reproductive and health problems. Lastly I will seek to provide a comprehensive sexual and reproductive health and security information and database for girls and women in northern Kenya with a view of government and informal sector intervention.

What are some of your unanswered questions about the problem(s) you are working to address?

1. Who are the girls and women affected by conflict and disaster in northern Kenya? 2. How many girls and women are affected by conflict and disaster in northern Kenya? 3. In what ways do the conflicts in northern Kenya affect the sexual and reproductive health of the girls and women? 4. What are the traditional influences on the sexual and health problems of girls and women in northern Kenya? 4. What are the institutions that have been put in place to address the sexual and the reproductive

Explain Your Idea

The idea of scouts and monitors on health and security of women and girls in northern Kenya has been borrowed from the scouts and pre-vets in the monitoring of movement of livestock diseases. These disease are common in northern Kenya and they include; Foot and Mouth disease, rinderpest, Bovine Pleura Pneumonia and East Coast Fever. The monitoring is done to ensure “safe corridors” for the movement of livestock. Centre for Democracy Research and Development (CEDRED) has been operating in northern Kenya for five (5) years and has been working with limited number of scouts and monitors who have documented the plight of girls and women in health and security matters and how often this has been complicated by conflict in the region. The CEDRED mandate is to create empowerment opportunities for girls and women and minimize vulnerabilities while seeking strategies of dealing with the vice of insecurity and poor health. Through training, girls and women have learnt how to document health challenges caused by conflict in northern Kenya. CEDRED deals with various communities in counties found in the remote areas in Kenya in which they are given information on security problems that affect women and girls in northern Kenya. In northern Kenya women and girls face different levels of marginalization due to the pastoralist lifestyle. Due to triple marginalization has seen women denied access and control of resources. (See attached document for additional details and methodology)

Name the three most important ways that your idea will address your identified problem(s).

1. Through reproductive health and monitor scouts who will be drawn from the community, girls and women affected by conflict will be identified 2. A data base of sexual and reproductive health health problems affecting girls and women will also be identified 3. Girls and women will be trained on sexual and reproductive issues 4. The community will be sensitized on the need to help curb sexual and reproductive health problems affecting girls and women 5. Lines of reporting sexual and reproductive health problems will be defined 6. The community, the government and non -governmental organizations will be alerted on the need to take action on the sexual and reproductive health challenges facing girls and women

How is your idea unique?

Many organizations do not like working in northern Kenya because of rampant insecurity. Most projects on sexual and reproductive health for girls & women are mostly found in southern Kenya and the informal settlements The most common health problem addressed by most NGOs & government in northern Kenya is FGM and early marriage. This idea will be out to address issues od STDs, infertility, safe abortion, safe delivery, nutrition, rape among others that are considered either taboo topics or common sense. My idea will be successful because it borrows from the livestock sector where there is monitoring of livestock diseases to allow for safe corridors of animal movement. Since this community attaches a lot of importance to livestock it will be very easy for the community scouts and monitors to collect and document information. Traditional Birth Attendants is an area that my idea hopes to engage seriously with a view of provident a data base on their availability, training them

What are some outstanding concerns or questions that you have regarding your idea?

I have worked on issues of peace building by women and girls in northern Kenya using different spaces. The role of Women’s Knowledge Systems in Peace building is at the Centre of my interests. Currently I am working of radicalization of Women and Girls and implications for security in Kenya

Who are your end users?

Girls, Women, Men, Children, Communities, NGOs, CBOs, Security organs, Government ministries, International organs, policy makers and policy implementers.

Where will your idea be implemented?

  • Kenya

What is the primary type of emergency setting where your innovation would operate?

  • Natural disaster
  • Armed conflict
  • Prolonged displacement
  • Extreme drought
  • Epidemic
  • Community at risk of disaster

Tell us more about the emergency setting that you intend to implement in

I intend to set up more rescue centers for the women in domestic violence, FGM culprits & those escaping early and forced marriage. I will establish clear reporting lines for rape cases & epidemics. The scouts and monitors will report to specific offices on any risks facing women & girls. Risks include culture which doesn’t allow discussion on SRH problems. Another risk is insecurity & poor infrastructure which may affect the movement and reporting of the scouts & monitors.

What is your organization's name?

Center for Democracy Research and Development (CEDRED).

Tell us more about you.

CEDRED is based in Nairobi, and works on many things including Peace & conflict, and SRH. We also do capacity building in many areas. My team is best suited to implement this idea because we have been working in northern Kenya and on women and girls sexual & reproductive health for a long time. The CEDRED secretariat is well vast with northern Kenya & so collecting information, selecting scouts and monitors among other duties will not be a challenge. My team is also made up of high ranking scholars, Professors & doctors who are able to do quality research & write good reports that can influence policy on sexual and reproductive health of girls & women. I have a PhD in Peace and Conflict Studies.

Organizational Characteristics

  • Women-led organization

What is the current scale of your proposed innovation?

  • National - expansive reach within 1 country

Experience in Implementation Country(ies)

  • Yes, for more than one year.

Expertise in Sector

  • Yes, for less than a year.

Organization Location


What is your organizational status?

  • Registered non-profit, charity, NGO, or community-based organization.

What is the maturity of your innovation?

  • Existing Prototype or Pilot: Tested a part of my solution with users and am iterating.


Join the conversation:

Photo of Animesh Prakash

Wonderful idea. It addresses a lot of problem that needs attention in Kenya!

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