Tupo. Tusikizwe Lobby GRB Paper 2021

Category: Articles , No Comments

A Proposal of Matuga Sub-County Community Members on Gender Responsive Budgeting
Presented to the County Government of Kwale on 02.02.2021

Background of the organization
The Coalition on Violence Against Women (COVAW) is a national Kenyan not-for-profit women’s rights organization. We are committed to advancing women’s rights; and work towards achieving a society free from all forms of Violence Against Women and Girls (VAWG). COVAW was founded in 1995 as a response to the silence of the Kenyan society to address VAWG. COVAW implements projects under five (5) strategic focus areas including: Access to Comprehensive Sexual and Gender Based Violence (SGBV) and Sexual and Reproductive Health Rights (SRHR) Services; Women’s Economic Empowerment; Women’s Leadership Development; Access to Justice; and Institutional Development.

Project description
COVAW in partnership with VOICE is currently implementing the TUPO.TUSIKIZWE (We are here. Listen to us) Project in Kwale County aimed at empowering marginalized women and girls, including those with disabilities, to participate in the County Budget process by enhancing their voices to lobby for the uptake of their priority needs and equitable distribution of resources. The two-year project is implemented in 5 villages in Waa Ng’ombeni and Tsimba Golini wards, Matuga Subcounty. Civil society and community champions participated in a three days training on Gender Responsive Budgeting at Pride Inn and Kombani Social Hall respectively. The teams were facilitated to understand the county budget cycle processes, analyzing county budget estimates against community needs and how to integrate GRB principles into resource allocation to ensure gendered needs of women, girls and PWDs are met. During the workshop, the team identified gaps in resource allocation in the county and developed a gender priorities lobby paper with recommendations to the county government regarding making the Kwale County public resources planning and budgeting be gender responsive.

Sectoral specific recommendation on Gender Responsive Budgeting
1. EDUCATIONAL SECTOR
Access to education plays an immense role in the realization of SDG 4 which aims to ‘Ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all’. It also strengthens and SDG 5 on the ‘Achievement of gender equality and empowerment of all women and girls.’ The County government of Kwale is
committed to ensuring universal access to education to all residents. In the FY 2020/2021 Early Childhood Education ECDE has an allocation of approximately Ksh. 357 million to construct ECDE centers including a flagship project to build an ECDE teacher training college in Kinango sub county.
In Kaya Waa village, there is no ECDE center where children can access learning conveniently. Children cover at least 6km to the nearest school (Boa Primary). Attendance of the children in school is poor due to long distance from home which affects the performance of the pupils in early primary school, it further affects the attendance and age entry of the pupils in pre-schools. Bursary allocation scheme in the county has been operationalized to promote students’ enrolment, attendance, retention, performance and transition rates in schools, colleges, vocational training centers and universities. Allocation of bursaries to learners is inequitably distributed among learners. The county has an allocation of Ksh. 20M every financial year in each of the 20 wards. It is paramount to recognize that having the same allocation in each ward does not factor in various parameters including population of students, poverty levels across the county among other factors. According to The 2019 Kenya Population and Housing Census (KPHC 2019,) distribution of learners in secondary and tertiary institutions is as follows: Kinango 3827, Matuga 11,399, Msambweni 11,100, Lungalunga 7857 and Samburu 8616. These statistics clearly illustrate the need to ensure bursary allocation is guided by students’ population size as one of the parameters. Access to vocational education for women, youth including PWDs is very limited. The county should formulate a deliberate campaign to enroll youth, PWDs and women to technical and vocational education and training (TVET) centers. Additionally, setting up girls’ hostels in vocational centers located in far flung areas e.g. Galana that are not easily accessible would be ideal to enable women, youth and PWDs to be hosted as they
continue with studies. This will improve enrolment and retention rates to facilitate their successful completion of training and improve their employability.

Recommendations under Education Sector
1. We urge the county government to ensure an ECDE center is built in Kaya Waa to benefit children of Kaya Waa village.
2. We urge the county government to ensure equitable distribution of education bursaries by population size as a parameter. This will ensure that all children are sustained children in school.
3. Clear allocation of funds and detailed guidelines to institutions for people living with Disabilities (PWDs), Youth, and women to access technical and vocational education and training (TVET) centers.
4. Provision of hosting facilities for Women, PWDs to ensure sustained retention rates in school

2. HEALTH SECTOR
The County Government of Kwale is committed to promoting accessible, quality and responsive health care services for all in line with SDG 3 to ‘ensure healthy lives and promote wellbeing of all ages’. The county is keen on rolling out construction and equipping of dispensaries to improve on service delivery and reduce the mortality rate. In FY 2020/2021, the county has allocated approximately Ksh. 346,793,961 to construct and equip health facilities. However, in some areas within Matuga sub county, women, girls including PWDs still have a challenge in accessing health care services due to either long distance or lack of facilities e.g. laboratory services. In Kaya Waa, Mteza and Madibwani villages, there is no health facility within the locality. Residents travel a long distance to access health care services. Pregnant mothers most times end up giving birth at home due to financial constraints and challenges in accessing the health facility; a health risk for both the mother and the infant! PWDs face very many challenges when going to the Sub county hospitals to access the Physiotherapy sessions. These challenges include congestion in the hospital, high transport implications because of the special needs of the PWD and poor quality service delivery due to the high number of patients in line.

Recommendations under Health Sector
1. We urge the county government of Kwale to construct and fully equip a health facility with a maternity wing at Kaya Waa and Mteza dispensary (nearest dispensary Lutsangani which is Kinango sub county).
2. Actualize the commitment to construct and furnish the Madibwani Health Centre and construct a shed in Mlola (Waa Ng’ombeni) to support the mobile clinic health care workers as they dispense health services to the community.
3. Have physiotherapy sessions at subsidized rate for PWDs in the Sub county hospitals.
4. Make all hospitals and the services youth-friendly, women-friendly, and disability-friendly.
5. We also urge the county to facilitate targeted community outreaches and provide physiotherapy services to the PWDs. This will enable them to overcome mobility challenges and improve their functional abilities to engage in productive activities.

3. AGRICULTURAL SECTOR
The Kwale County Government strives to ensure food security to its residents and strengthens household income through development projects that will promote improved agronomic practices in terms of land preparations, use of high quality planting materials and farm inputs as well as promote irrigation in areas with reliable water sources; improved livestock breeds and husbandry as well as efficient and effective pest and disease control and empowering fisher folks to increase marine and aquaculture catch and total incomes from fish and fish products. Despite all the prospects that Kwale county has; including vast and fertile land in Matuga sub county, efforts to improve on agriculture are suboptimal. This has led to continued high poverty index in the county and this mostly affects the women, youths and PWDs in the community. Poor agricultural productivity results in loss of family income, increased poverty, hunger as well as malnutrition due to lack of a balanced diet. In the FY 2020/2021 the agriculture sector was awarded approximately Ksh. 234M for development expenditure. There is therefore need to increase agricultural productivity and market access to enable more rural poor households to grow enough food to begin selling it, leading to welfare gains and poverty reduction.

Recommendations under the Agricultural Sector
1. Enhance access to agricultural financing to small scale farmers by promoting access for loans and short term grants.
2. Promote the use of irrigation to farmers to avoid the agricultural activities being fully rain dependent and susceptible to drought shocks. By investing in irrigation and agricultural water management for smallholders can reduce productivity shocks and raise the sector’s total factor productivity.
3. To boost agricultural productivity and subsequent economic empowerment of women in agriculture, we request the County Government to diversify agriculture by constructing modern fish ponds, support farmers in apiculture (bee keeping),provide hybrid cows to farmers and drought resistant seedlings to avoid over reliance on rain fed agriculture
4. Training and educating the women, girls and PWDs on agribusiness to maximize on productivity as well as improve the lives of the community through income generating activities. Improve on the extension services.
4. WATER SECTOR –UNIVERSAL ACCESS TO WATER AND SANITATION
KPHC 2019,) indicates major sources of water for the county households as follows: pond (17.2%), borehole (12.7%) and public tap (18.3%). The County government of Kwale under the department of water services aims to promote safe and sustainable water services for all residents by improving access, quality and storage of water for sustainable development. During FY 2020/2021, an allocation of approximately Ksh. 868M towards development expenditure to improve universal access to water for the residents was given Matuga residents still decry poor distribution and access to water. In Madibwani, kaya Waa (Waa Ng’ombeni) and Bang ’a (Tsimba Golini) women and girls walk long distances to fetch water. This translates into a lot of time lost which could have otherwise been spent by women working and girls studying. Additionally, women and girls’ vulnerability to sexual and gender based violence is heightened since they travel to and from the water points unaccompanied. PWDs groups complain of the lack of water as the main barrier in maximizing productivity in their agricultural projects such as chicken rearing.

Recommendations under the Water sector – Water and Sanitation
1. We propose an improvement in access to water through proper distribution of water. In every 10 households, there should be a borehole and water kiosk to ease access to piped water.
2. The County Government should invest in water harvesting and storage will help the residents have access to clean and healthy drinking water at household level.
3. Ensure that there are funds set aside for Sanitation & Hygiene improvement and not only during outbreaks.

5. COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT AND TALENT MANAGEMENT
The County Government of Kwale has committed to enhance civic education on mainstreaming youth, PWDs and gender issues through sensitization to county departments to incorporate gender issues in planning budgeting and implementation of programmes. However, this is yet to gain momentum. During FY 2020/2021, the department had a total allocation of approximately Ksh. 178M to undertake development projects. Lack of civic awareness in the community especially among the minority and marginalized groups has left them unable to participate effectively in county decision making platforms. Sexual and gender based violence incidents have been witnessed in Matuga sub county. Adolescent girls and young women including persons with disabilities have been negatively affected. Since the outbreak of COVID-19 accompanied with containment measures put in place to mitigate against the spread of the virus, SGBV incidents have been on the rise. Forced child marriages, child pregnancies, child trafficking and
commercial sexual exploitation of children are among the challenges faced by children across the county. Lack of safe houses for survivors of SGBV hinders access to justice as well as a support system for them to heal and be reintegrated to their families. Civic education will ease accessibility by all residents as well as ensure that citizens understand their role in being actively involved in county processes.

Recommendations under Social services and talent management
1. Allocation of spaces of engagement for PWDs to participate effectively in county decision making platforms.
2. We urge the county government to improve the Complex that houses Gender Based Violence survivors at Waa by setting up a one stop complex that houses a Gender Based Violence and Recovery Center to support survivors of SGBV.
3. Allocation of more funds for its operation and maintenance.
4. Sensitization forums by County departments on the SGBV issues around illegality of the acts on SGBV.
5. Affirm strict measures to be meted on perpetrators of child rights violations.
6. Kaya Waa residents also urge the county government to construct a social hall in the area where residents can hold meetings as well as cultural activities like music and drama events.
7. Information dissemination should be PWD friendly to ensure inclusion of PWDs by availing braille documents and sign language interpreters during the civic education fora.

6. ENTERPRISE DEVELOPMENT
Tourism, Trade and Enterprise department’s objectives include: To promote industrialization and avail affordable credit to traders as well as capacity building on available opportunities. During FY 2020/2021, enterprise development had an allocation of approximately Ksh. 150M. Women, youth and PWDs from Matuga sub county have been excluded in access to employment opportunities. High rates of unemployment among youths and low economic opportunities to women from Kaya Waa is prevalent. Majority of women engage in exploitative trade in the quarrying activities with meagre payments that are worsened by high levies on the stones and ballast. Lack of awareness of the existing funds and loans that women, youth and PWDs can benefit from is one of the major reasons for the declining number of those benefiting from the funding opportunities. The community has faulted the County Trade Revolving Fund having collateral as a requirement for individuals who wish to benefit. For women and
youths, it is worse where the majority do not own any property to be used as collateral in acquiring loans.
Recommendations under Enterprise Development
1. We urge the county to recognize artisanal quarrying activities in Kaya Waa and support them acquire modern equipment for quarrying activities. This will enable the workers to work in a healthy and safe environment as well as provide a source of income to the locals and revenue generation to the county government.
2. We urge the county government of Kwale to support women across the county to register women groups and businesses to enable them participate effectively in the reserved and preferential Access to Government Procurement Opportunities (AGPO).
3. We also urge the county to conduct a needs assessment to the PWDs and support them with assistive devices to aid their mobility to engage in productive activities e.g. business
4. We urge the county government to continuously educate women, youth and PWDs on Affirmative Action Funds (Women Empowerment Fund, Youth Enterprise Development Fund, Uwezo Fund, MSME Fund, Stawi, Kenya
Industrial Development Fund)
5. Stipulated requirements on getting loans should be women, youth and PWDs friendly to ease accessibility by the minority and marginalized. Less interest on the loans and increased repayment period.
6. Setting up sheds where youths can set up their startups and sell their wares will help boost self-employment to the artisans.
In conclusion, we wish to state that our proposals are consistent with the Kwale County Medium Term Plan III (2018-2022) of Vision 2030, the Kwale County Integrated Development Plan 2018-2022, and the Governor’s Second Manifesto 2018-2022. Our proposals are within the law and guided by the need to create budgets for equality that
cover the rights and needs of Women, Youth and Persons with Disability (PWDs). We wish to recommend to the Kwale County Government to adopt the Gender Responsive Budgeting (GRB) Framework and improve service delivery to the people of Matuga Sub County and Kwale County at large.

-Ends-