FIDA Kenya recognizes that despite Kenya going through drastic legal and policies reforms to support gender equality, women continue to suffer various forms of discrimination as a result of lack of normative framework on implementation of these laws and policies, weak institutions, lack of awareness, retrogressive cultural practices, structural inequalities and strong influence in the implementation of laws by patriarchal norms and practices.
This programme works at maintaining and consolidating gains made for women over the years and addressing new challenges that arise in efforts towards actualization of gender equality. The programme seeks to enhance women’s participation and realization of their socio-economic and cultural rights. In achieving its objectives, the programmes has adopted a holistic approach by strategically engaging key stakeholders including; community members and gate keepers, government agencies both at the national and county levels, civil society organizations and regional and international agencies and institutions.
The programme engages in the following;
Institutional Development and systems strengthening
FIDA Kenya works with various institutions to ensure gender inclusivity and responsiveness. The organization is currently working in 22 out of 47 counties with Members of the County Assemblies and Executive on gender equality, gender responsive legislation and budgeting. Engagement with community members in these Counties has seen women interested in affairs of the County through public participation and establishment of Caucus for coordinated participation.
FIDA Kenya developed a memorandum on the community land bill that was passed into community land act.
Legislative and policy engagement
FIDA Kenya has been at the centre of the struggle for a new Constitution which would outlaw all forms of discrimination and encourage participation of women in all spheres of development. FIDA Kenya has maps out critical legal provisions in the Constitution and other legislation that would advance the legal status of women and provide vital expertise and perspective to National and County Assemblies. The organization participated at the National level to push for the enactment of the Children’s Act of 2001, Sexual Offences Act of 2006, Counter Trafficking in Persons Act of 2011, and Prohibition of FGM Act of 2011, Land Act of 2012, Land Registration Act of 2012, Matrimonial Property Act of 2014, Marriage Act of 2014 and most recently the Domestic Violence (Family Protection) Act of 2015.
Premised on the fact that women can enjoy their rights if people understand, appreciate and comply with the laws protecting women, this intervention focuses on dealing with community members, leaders and structures by providing civic education and awareness creation on legal provisions of women’s rights. Women land and property rights, sexual and reproductive health and rights, sexual and gender based violence; FGM, peace and security are among key areas the organization has engaged in under this intervention. The organizations has used these forum to get feedback from the community and using it as a baseline for future interventions.
International and Regional Cooperation
FIDA Kenya is an accredited institution and has observer status with United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) and African Commission on Human and People’s Rights (ACHPR).the organization continues to use networks established regionally such as the Women Inheritance Now (WIN), CSO Platform of the African Union Land Policy Initiative and Lake Victoria Rights Alliance – East African to engage in a joint advocacy on women’s rights. FIDA Kenya facilitated a meeting between the development partners (embassy of Belgium, island and Danish) and Homa bay county assembly women leaders on 28th April 2016,to interact with leaders who were part of the project ‘promoting the representation of women in political decision making organs’. The women leaders had gained skills from FIDA Kenya training, networks building.