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Cablegate: Successful Workshop On Tip and Child Sex Tourism in Kenya's

VZCZCXRO1636
PP RUEHGI RUEHRN
DE RUEHNR #1042 1091036
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 181036Z APR 08
FM AMEMBASSY NAIROBI
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 5540
INFO RUEHXR/RWANDA COLLECTIVE PRIORITY

UNCLAS NAIROBI 001042

SIPDIS

DEPT FOR G/TIP, AF/E, AF/RSA, AF/EPS, AND DRL/IL
DEPT ALSO PASS TO DEPT OF LABOR FOR MICHAL MURPHY, SUDHA HALEY,
PATRICK WHITE AND MAUREEN PETTIS

SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: ELAB KCRM PHUM KE
SUBJECT: SUCCESSFUL WORKSHOP ON TIP AND CHILD SEX TOURISM IN KENYA'S
COASTAL DISTRICTS


1. Summary: SOLWODI's April 11-13 workshop on trafficking and child
sex tourism, funded through a G/TIP project, was very effective in
building Coast Province activists' capacity and encouraging the
community to discuss these sensitive issues. Labor Officer
recommends further use of the participatory theater techniques used
by the workshop facilitators. End summary.

SOLWODI-Mijikenda Workshop
--------------------------
2. The Mijikenda Girl Child Organization held an April 11-13
Capacity Building Workshop for about 15 of its members and community
activists from Kwale, Mombasa, Kilifi, and Malindi Districts on
"Interventions and Coping Skills in Commercial Sexual Exploitation
of Children (CSEC)" at the Kikambala Childrens' Home. Miji Kenda is
the Swahili name for the nine major sub tribes of the Coast region.
The goal was for participants to learn about trafficking and child
sex tourism (CST), and learn effective techniques for their
community outreach work. The District Officer and local Assistant
Chief officiated in some of the sessions. The workshop discussed
the laws regarding CST and the available legal resources, and
identified networking opportunities and partners, but did not draft
an Action Plan as originally scheduled.

3. The workshop was funded by the NGO Solidarity with Women in
Distress (SOLWODI), under a project funded by G/TIP to address TIP
in Coast Province. The SOLWODI representative briefed the group on
trafficking and its project to rescue sex workers and trafficking
victims, counsel them, arrange education or vocational training, and
either return them to their homes, or resettle them. She described
how SOLWODI organized a football team and drama club to build
rescued victims' esteem, and uses the matches and performances to
build community awareness.

Widespread Lack of Awareness of TIP
-----------------------------------
4. The participants agreed that, because of the general lack of
awareness, it is often difficult to identify trafficking victims.
Parents who offer their children to work as domestics and the
relatives who exploit the children do not realize they are
traffickers, and children take the situation as normal. They said
the police treat sex workers, even children, as criminals. TIP is
big business, and some traffickers are powerful. Victims fear
retribution if they come forward and doubt the police will protect
them.

Community Faces Many Related Problems
-------------------------------------
5. The cases cited by the participants demonstrated that the
community views HIV/AIDS, substance abuse, child defilement, and
migration to the Middle East as bigger problems than TIP. With
many girls and women (and increasing numbers of boys) driven by
poverty, negligent parents or spouses, and unemployment to become
commercial sex workers in tourism areas, HIV/AIDS has struck many
households and created many orphans, increasing the strain on
extended families. Sexual abuse of children (defilement), usually
by relatives or neighbors, is increasing, leaving families and
children traumatized and sometimes infected with HIV/AIDS or other
sexually transmitted diseases. Seeking high income jobs, many
Muslim people migrate to the Middle East rather than work in the
Coast hotels. Their absence leaves their families more vulnerable
to child abuse, CST and TIP, but they often return after years of
work with meager returns, feeling bitter and ashamed. The group
agreed that Kenyan embassies have a reputation of being unhelpful to
Kenyans exploited overseas.

Comment
-------
6. The Labor Officer attended two days of the workshop, and found
the participatory theater techniques used by the Amani Peoples
Theatre facilitators to be very effective for explaining
trafficking, highlighting its effect on the community, encouraging
the community to discuss its problems and overcome its traditional
extreme reticence about issues involving sex. The performances
presented to a small group of local residents stimulated them into a
frank discussion (laced with much embarrassed laughter) of the
sensitive issues involved in trafficking and child sex tourism, and
ways the community could address the problems. Labor Officer
recommends further use of this technique, both for training and for
public outreach.

RANNEBERGER

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
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