PLATFORM FOR DISSEMINATINGMATERNAL AND CHILD SURVIVAL (MCS)MESSAGES BY RELIGIOUS LEADERS. (KAKAMEGA COUNTY)
(Photo: Felisus Mbakaya sensitizing women members of Nabala church on water and cleanliness at, Khayega, Kakamega County)
My name is Felistus K. Mbakaya one of the congregational leaders trained by the Evangelical Alliance of Kenya (EAK) as ToT in Khayega – Kakamega County. Since the training, I have shared key Maternal and Child Survival messages in numerous forums. We meet the church women group members at least once a week and utilize these forums to sensitize womenfolk’s on key MCS indicators.
Before F4L training, I never had facts on the need for treating drinking water, or washing hands after visiting the toilet. Like everybody else here, I did not understand the need for all that, but through the faith for life project I have acquired a lot of knowledge that I pass during and after church services as well during our women group meeting.
According to me, most of my congregational members never used to treat their water, and did not even appreciate the importance of water treatment leading to high cases of diarrhea in the area. However, through her sensitization effort, many are now aware of the importance of treating or boiling drinking water and actually practice it. We really appreciate Inter –Religious Council of Kenya for the training and support.
Maternal and Child Survival (MCS) messages by Religious Leaders. (Migori County)
My name is Noah Emonje, am a pastor, a F4L trainer and coordinator of “Youth for Change” youth group in Migori. After being trained as Trainer of Trainer (TOT) in Faith for Life, I have learnt that social vices such as; drug abuse, unemployment and irresponsible sexual relations affected our peers. I took it upon myself to form an outreach youth group in Migori town. The group creates awareness among youth in Migori on dangers of early pregnancies, and HIV/ AIDs. To date, i and the group have reached out to over 1000 youth with correct information on sexuality and health. Being a pastor and member of Homa bay interfaith network, the team uses Faith for Life materials in reaching out to their peers on HIV and Aids, sexual and reproductive health among others.
Noah Emonje a F4L trainer citing Biblical reference during F4L sensitization meeting in Taraga church, Migori County Through this group’s efforts many youth are now going for HIV testing as attested by one of the youths we interviewed. “I was afraid to go for HIV testing…but when I attended the youth forum organized by Noah, I realized the importance of taking the test…today I know my HIV status and am living happy, healthy and without fears…”Atieno* said. By reaching out to the youth, the group is changing the community’s perceptions on HIV and Aids as well as health seeking behaviors. “Faith for Life training has been very helpful… I used the knowledge and skills to educate the community youths and now everybody can see the fruits…”