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Human Rights Advocacy and Good Governance

In 2010, Kenya promulgated the Constitution. Kenya’s Constitution is touted as one of the best with a comprehensive chapter on Human Rights. The constitution provides for a lot of gains citizens that were previously marginalized; for instance, youths, people with disability, women and the elderly just to mention a few. Participation in decision making and governance process is also of essence in the Kenya’s Constitution.

On the other hand, the general population may not realise the gains of the constitution and the Human Rights provisions therein with the prevailing status quo. Thus, this calls for concerted efforts toward raising awareness and education on human rights.  Tembea in partnership with Youth Alive! Kenya through the human rights program (2009), conducted a survey about the knowledge and the attitude of people in Siaya County on human rights. Through the survey, the researchers found “that only 5.5 percent of adults and 2 percent of young people are aware of and can name the Human Rights Chapter in the Harmonized Kenya’s Constitution and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights”. This study reveals the need to expose youths and the general public to the Kenya’s Human Rights Chapter, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, as well as human rights education in general.

The definition of “human rights education” is important to understand. According to the Plan of Action: World Programme for Human Rights Education, First Phase (2006),

[H]uman rights education can be defined as education, training and information aimed at building a universal culture of human rights. A comprehensive education in human rights not only provides knowledge about human rights and the mechanisms that protect them, but also imparts the skills needed to promote, defend and apply human rights in daily life. Human rights education fosters the attitudes and behaviors needed to uphold human rights for all members of society.

In response, Tembea have evolved to a hub of youth groups as well as young individuals sharing similar vision of scaling up the right based approach to development agenda at the community grassroots level. This was in response to community need for a support structure for poverty alleviation, environmental conservation and fight against HIV/AIDS pandemic.

Our Intervention

i) Human Rights Education and Awareness

ii) Social Accountability and Leadership

iii) Legal Aid and support for women, orphan and vulnerable children,