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Our ‘5’ days of activism

Ending Violence Against Women in Kakamega

By Mary Keya, Project Officer –KCWEP

The 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence is a yearly campaign that is observed from November 25th to December 10th. Kakamega County Widows Empowerment Project (KCWEP) champions for advocacy strategies for primary prevention of violence, discrimination, and negligence against young women, widows and disabled people. KCWEP is a Voice empowerment grantee in Kenya.

This year, we joined the world in celebrating the 16 days of activism. However, due to limited resources and the current COVID-19 pandemic, we had to be innovative on how we celebrated the day while ensuring that COVID-19 regulations were still observed. For five intensive days, we went around different towns in Kakamega, holding campaigns.

So how did we plan all this?

The planning started at the organisational level with key staff deliberating on the areas of focus. The following key areas were the most overarching contributing to the frequent Gender Based Violence ( GBV) cases reported in the county.

  • Issues surrounding land and property inheritance especially to widows and the girl child
  • GBV cases caused within the family set up including; rape by relatives, isolation of children with disabilities by the family, sexual assault in marriages and a biased justice delivery
  • Disability, where we singled out discrimination based on deafness and physical disability

With these key areas already mapped out, we then started detailing the highlights and emphasis of our campaigns. In the five days, we visited various shopping centres within our catchment area and each day we had the following activities:

  • Assembling of the participants
  • Procession to the shopping centres with placards written on the different topics of activism
  • Speeches from different groups including survivors, champions and staff members

See what we did in the picture story below.

It was interesting to see the reaction and growing interest of the community as our campaign rolled out. With each day, the community realised that stopping gender-based violence is a collective responsibility that can only be solved if each of us worked together and embraced each other despite our physical abilities.

In the short video below, we have a message from a leader in East Wanga to the community.


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