Gender is an interdisciplinary concept that refers to women and men, the relation between them, and the institution that governs that relationship. Men are the actor who influences the reproductive health outcome of the women. The role of men affects family, church, village, and country at large.
According to the survey done most of the men in Meru County don’t play their role and women are stressed up bringing their family. Women are the ones who are burdened with bringing up their children by providing basic needs while their husbands are idling. This has led to slow economic growth in the country at large. There is also gender violence within Meru County leading to a poor relation among family members especially the parents. Due to these challenges children end up adopting these retrogressive practices leading to slow development. CIFORD found it necessary to organize one-day seminar which was to include only mean especially the opinion leaders such as elders and men aged 30-45.
On Wednesday 22 November 2017 CIFORD –KENYA organized a men consultative meeting at Lailuba center for men between 30 to 45 years. 69 (85%) men turned out for the seminar.
The seminar started at 9:30 am with an introduction and the activities they are involved with. Men seemed to have more interest in activities that CIFORD is doing especially in agriculture.
- The first facilitator handled Sexual Reproductive Health and Rights and Men’s role in health promotion in the community family planning was the core topic with emphasis on men to actively involve themselves in family planning and to promote family planning in the society, active participation and mutual agreement with the mothers was encouraged.
The second session was on men and development in rural area. Most of the men have not been praying their responsibility and leaving their work to women .Men were therefore encouraged to involve themselves actively in development.
The third session was on men contribution to women empowerment, child protection, and gender balance
After the training the women proceeded for a practical plant trees within CIFORD compound where, more than 150 trees were planted with the assistance of staff members.
- The seminar was appreciated by men and they said it was an eye-opener to issues they had not been taking serious and those that affect women and girls.
- Men promised to play their role in order to have unity in their family and reduce the gender-based violence
- Men embraced family planning which they said they thought it was a women business.
- It was a great opportunity to share experiences and ideas on family issues which positively impact on women.
- Men were very positive on the contents of the seminar and they said that such seminars will improve the family institution. They requested CIFORD to hold more of such seminars for men and also have couples seminar to improve on Family issues and relationships.
- Men have continued to believe that they are superior thus failing to be productive in today’s economy.
- One day seminar cannot cover all the topics and questions from men. SO they requested for more seminars of this kind.
on the event
Kalumera Thuranira is a 63 year old widow from Mumui sub location of Meru in the semi-arid region. Kalumera is seen as an outcast in the community as she is deaf and dumb and has no children. Her husband died 20 years ago who had married her as a second wife. Kalumera lives a lonely and alienated life.
Julia Kauria is a member of Kailakai Self help group in Kianjai ward, She is a beneficiary of CIFORD training program which is aimed at sustainable agriculture for food security. Julia has a garden and the joy in a whole family can be expressed in their faces.
Ann Mwari, a proud mother of six in her late 30s from Cheranga Village, Tigania West Constituency in Meru County. She is a member of Cheranga women self-help group. Her commitment, dedication and passion to unleash her potential through their group is quiet promising. Her journey started 2 years ago when she made a bold move to join colleague women in order to work together by bettering one another.