Sexual & Gender Based Violence Program
NOWSUD has an internal policy to get involved in aspects that affects women, children and youth since they form the bulk of the vulnerable who suffers most in the face of any form of violence. SGBV has been noted to expose children and youth to violence at a young age which makes them grow withholding a desire to violently revenge, the very trait that radicalization thrives on.
NOWSUD is investing heavily in restructuring Nyumba Kumi Clusters into manageable community policing units with unique identifier names and a substantive Cluster Head. Through these units, which comprises of a few households, NOWSUD will use a Mobile App designed to improve citizens’ collaboration with security agents to integrate SGBV into community policing by ensuring-
- Community (Nyumba Kumi Cluster members) participation in reporting SGBV cases which are on the rise in households
- Strengthen the response of police to incidence of SGBV in real time. The App will be linked to Joint Operations Command Center at Isiolo Police Station for 24 hours response
- Give a platform to other local SGBV actors to reach as many residents as possible.
Peace Building & Conflict Transformation
Persistent natural resources based conflicts pitting mostly different pastoralist communities has over the years resulted in the loss of both human lives, displacements and loss of livelihood opportunities. Violent extremism has emerged as a greater threat with increasing cases of youth radicalization and a clear risk of terror networks riding on other forms of conflicts to achieve their objectives.
NOWSUD’s Peace Building & Conflict Transformation Program deliberately attempts to address the push and pull factors with a specific focus on women and youth who are either victims of the ones used to achieve the goal of perpetrators.
NOWSUD recognizes women and children are the biggest victims of any conflict. In the face of the youth disappearing to join terror groups in foreign countries, women are the most traumatized as mothers yet their involvement in peace efforts to reduce youth getting lured can immensely help at the household level.
There is a growing need for interventions to focus on in-school and out-of-school youth since the former had a very big influence on the latter. Ethnic and religious profiling may be a big cause for very negative divisions among learners which has the potential of not only being violent but also disrupting real learning which compromises quality education and acceptable academic outcomes.
Peace, Security & Stability (PSS)
The five-year (2016-20) Royal Danish Embassy (DANIDA) funded project, implemented in partnership with Act Change Transform (Act!) seeks Improved capacity and effectiveness of CSOs, government and security oversight bodies to counter violent extremism and prevent political and natural resource conflicts in Kenya.
NOWSUD’s PSS Isiolo County Project- support for citizen-driven actions to prevent violent extremism and other community level conflicts in Isiolo County is designed to have the proposed interventions at the lowest level of the society for both sustainability and participation of as many residents as possible in collaboration with duty bearers particularly Government Policing Agencies and other non-state actors to ensure synergy. It will ensure all segments of the population including women and youth are incorporated in the implemented activities with women leaders being empowered to play an active role in peace and security.
The design is to enable interventions to address existing and emerging community-level opportunities favorable to violent extremism and other crimes. Special focus will be to entrench national objectives of Community Policing- Nyumba Kumi whose main goals are: elimination of fear of crime and social disorder, through joint problem solving; and, prevention of crime. NOWSUD has developed a Mobile App – MJIRANI App which provides a platform where all Nyumba Kumi Cluster members are registered to enable an interactive collaboration with government agencies. The app will also enable integration of landlords and tenants in community policing.
Livelihoods & Youth Engagement Program
Absence of local industries to create much needed employment and crippling drought leaving a massive loss of livestock due to climate change has seen most households live in abject poverty unable to afford more than a meal per day.
With the national youth unemployment levels still very high, the case of Isiolo County is compounded by a high number of youth without employable skills which pre-disposes them to be used by planners of conflicts including violent extremists. Vulnerable youth cannot meaningfully participate in social economic initiatives leaving isolated making them seek to belong in alternative activities where they can feel accepted.
NOWSUD’s approach to securing sustainable livehood opportunities target the high risk youth with a deliberate focus on reformed street youth for them not to return, those from very vulnerable households and have dropped out of school especially before they complete basic education and young single mothers struggling to bring up their children. The youth are supported with skills in tailoring and dressmaking, knitting and leather works including Core Business and Life skills which are necessary to ensure youth beneficiaries are well grounded to engage in income generating.
Basic Education & Skills Transfer Progam
Isiolo County is among counties in Kenya with the highest illiteracy level at more than 60%. This is made worse by the poor academic performance in national examinations with a county mean grade of D-(Minus) which is way below the minimum entry for most formal courses. This means majority of Form 4 leavers don’t proceed for further training for formal employment or even self-employment.
An increasing youthful population with basic education amidst non-existent employment opportunities and radicalization can be dangerous to security if not addressed. NOWSUD has been attempting to roll back the trend by supporting increased involvement of parents through the Parents Association, establishments of career wheels and setting up of the skills transfer center.