MICHELE BACHELET & MEMBERS OF THE UN WOMEN EXECUTIVE BOARD
Dear Madam Michelle Bachelet,
Congratulations!!! Bravo! Madam Michelle, you are now our UN Under –Secretary-General.
Gender Inequality Rights to Land and Security of Tenure, inheritance are not enjoyed equally by women and men . Gender issues related to land are complicated especially in our Country Kenya. Whereby, most of the tribes (even Culture) in Kenya (families) Girl Child , she has no right to inherit their fathers land or properties only boys do inherit. Some tribes , prefer educating educate boys. These days we know if you educate a girl child we are educating not only our families , or clan but the World at large.
Madam Michelle and the UN Women and the WORLD PULSE who are travelling to East Africa from 31st, January, 2011 to assist Women and girls to have a better Life is a good example. You are most WELCOME TO KENYA!!!
GENDER INEQUALITY AND EMPOWEREMENT: Women Rights awareness at the GRASSROOTS Community Level should be done through Workshops. They should train first Women Leaders at Community Level and then they Train the aged and Youth those illiterates (Slums) in their Mother Tongue or their National Language. Women have a right to equal treatment and access same facilities or jobs as Men do.
*A right to own property, to inherit their husbands Wealth. Majority do not know they have thse rights Culture prevent them from enjoying these right. Through Civil Education to inform them of their rights Women World Wide would be rescued from long time suffering.
In some Cultures, the girls should get married and inherit her husband’s properties. So if they happen to get children out of wedlock, Girls are chased out of her parent’s home by her brothers. Girls from home rural areas went to Urban Areas and because they could not afford the town high standard rental houses, they went to build carton-made houses and that is how slums came to existence in Urban Areas.
FINANCIAL CRISIS: Women, especially in slums, poor Communities are most affected . The continued discrimination women face, denied land and housing, disrespect for their human rights and lack of safety increases these problems.
Despite these obstacles, Women are trying to work together, they face financial challenges . The Merry-go-round they try to contribute and safe (as little as Kshs. 20 or Kshs. 50) they try their best to do small business all in vain. They struggle a lot to bring food home but most of them go for days without food. Their (children) Youth are school-dropouts due to lack of School fees at primary level. When they get out of School as you know idlers mind is a devils Workshop )who are jobless in extreme poverty have no well wishers or donors to train them either Mechanic, ICT, knitting, hairdressing, Driving Schools As I have been requesting in PULSE WIRE that our Community be assisted to have a CYBERCAFE INTERNET CONNECTED where they would learn Computer packages .( I do not have a Computer and I am not INTERNET CONNECTED so I visit a PRIVATE CYBERCAFE in order to make my Community voices be heard ) so Due to lack of informal Sector Programs Girls Youth result to prostitution HIV/Aids, early pregnancy they die early and live Orphaned children. Boys (Youth) become Drug traffickers, ROBBERS, touts, MUNGIKI are shot dead by Police at a very tender age. So the OVC (Orphaned Vulnerable Children) are so many in Slums our Community. But, If there are Donors, Well-wishers, Grants, who are concerned etc. Our Community would not be languishing in extreme Poverty.
NO PROPER SANITATION: So, Madam Michelle, in the slums there are no Toilets very few houses have pit Latrines. They relieve themselves in paper bags, and then they tie a knot then they throw them during the night . This method is known as “FLYING TOILETS”.
DANORA DUMPING SITE ; it is a few minutes walk to Dandora Dumping site . Whereby all the household in Nairobi dump their GARBAGE. It is very unhygienic to the residents around their DANDORA, KOROGOCHO Slums. Various diseases are reported at the nearby Catholic Hospital , respiratory complications especially to children who die early due to those complications. Residents for Years have taken their grievances to the Authority concerned to shift the dumping site to where there are no people living there, nothing has been done. There are also women and parking boys who either live in that dumping site , so They wait for Lorries that bring garbage and they correct paper bags, broken plastic buckets , bottles , cartons to sell them for money to get food to eat. Some say that the papers could be recycled so they take to industries far away from their for recycling.
When the WORLDPULSE TEAM come to visit KENYA , this should be marked as one of the targeted POINT to visit, and the slums around their houses roof were turned brown due to garbage.
ADULT EDUCATION: Free Adult Education would be beneficial to the aged whose main aim is to learn how to write their Names, read the BIBLE. The Youth due to lack of School Fees never attended even Nursery
TAPPED WATER: In slums settlements the residents do not have tapped water. There are points where they go to draw(buy) some water far away from their houses. Most of them cannot afford to buy water so, these results to various body diseases.(unhygienic)
MEDICAL FACILITY: For years our Community Kariobang South has suffered a lot without a PUBLIC HEALTH FACILITY . The Community around are jobless, they can’t afford a Private Hospital. So, the four roomed Iron-Sheet build structure was turned to a PUBLIC HEALTH CENTRE. It has only one Doctor , a Sister-in-Charge and a nurse. Patient s are increasing Day by Day, There is no Laboratory, Maternity Ward , Ambulance no Medicines we borrow from Dandora Facility. There are Volunteer Community Health Workers , I being one of them we assist in referring neighbourhood patients to our Health Centre. The do not pay us.
PROPER HOUSES: Most of them were squatters and they were given plots to build houses, they made either carton make shifts, or ironsheets –walled houses. Due to poverty, and they are supposed to pay Government Land Rates when the rates accumulate they end up selling their only plots to those outsiders who have money. They sell them at a throw away price, to the rich who are now building permanents Houses. They now become poorer they, they become tenants in the same Slums. But if there could be a an Organization caring for the poor who have land built for them and then refund Loan Repayment be reasonable and at 1% .
THE AGED: Homes should be built for the aged whose relatives are no where to be traced, a program to feed even those who are in the slums and no ways of getting food to eat.
So Madam Michelle, I hope you will attend to our needs and our voices at the Grassroots Community Level. The UNIFEM (body) and others will find proper ways and to increase capacity to promote Gender Quality and to eliminate Poverty, to reach to the affected Grassroots Level (slums) through the Pulse Wire Members .
MY OWN STORY OF GENDER INEQUALITY
I had a friend whom we were married by the same Relatives. My friend and I came from the same Home Area. She had three Children , Her Drunkard husband ever came home late from 2.00am. He is so arrogant. He used to wake-up the Children, beat up the wife for no reason. So there were no peace in that house and everyone wished he would not come home. So, the wife could not go home to her parents because the brothers would not allow her to stay.
One day, she had a thorough beating and she was chased away to her parents by the Husband. She went to her parents and left the children with the Husband. She stayed for months in her parents home, the daughter third born was one and a half years when she left. So, at times she used to sneak home to attend the daughter even though the husband had employed a house girl to look after the children. I remember one day we were chased away with her (a big iron bar) when she was late and decided to spend the night at her marital home.
The parents and the brothers on the Mother s side were not happy with their daughter and they forced her to go back to her marital home. So, when the parents from both side met with the daughter and the son to iron out the differences. No-one , sided with the mother of the children, even after complaining of the everyday beatings. So her Parents, ordered her to go back to her marital home, the wife was later taken to the Husbands RURAL home with the Children . She Suffered depression , She was admitted in a hospital and then, the husband never went to visit her in hospital . Her Father was informed of her daughter’s illness. He went very early to visit her in hospital. He found that he had died a few minutes a go and the body was still in the Hospital bed. He couldn’t believe ! he tried to touch her body it was still warm. Her Father cried a lot He was telling me. If he had known after his Daughter going back to the husband , that would be the outcome . He would not have allowed her back to the husband . Her children suffered a lot , after the mothers burial the Father moved to live with his mistress. The Children left their rural home and went to live with their mothers friends .
The poor children were left lonely at the hands of sympathizers. The Father was less concerned.
GENDER INEQUALITY : If there Is Gender EQUALITY and Human Rights , the mother would not have died . After, the husband beatings ,She could have gone back to her father and the father would have given her share of property. She could have lived single with her three children happy.
So, the Madam Michelle, much more we will continue informing you ,when you visit us we still have similar cases whereby so many single ladies with their children suffer extreme poverty in slums. If they had Free Trainings informal Sector , they would now be having small businesses for their livelihood.
MADAM MICHELLE, I WISH YOU THE BEST AS YOU SERVE GOD IN THE POOREST OF THE POOR.
MAY GOD BLESS YOU. AMEN.
TERESIA WAMBUI N. K.
VOLUNTEER, COMMUNNITY SOCIAL WORK
MOBILE NO. +254 733 420 575
As the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women officially begins its work this month, World Pulse is asking women worldwide: What is YOUR vision and recommendation for UN Women? We invite you to raise your voice by writing a letter to UN Women Executive Director Michelle Bachelet outlining your recommendation for how this new UN agency can truly affect change on the ground to promote gender equality and uphold the rights and needs of women both on a local and global scale.
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