Gender Forum

Gender Forum

There are two stories being told about food security. One story says we are food secure and the other says we are not. The stories are being told – and written – by various people with different intentions. There are those who weave dreams, where fiction reigns and happy endings preside. Then there are those who tell it like it is.

This was the question that lingered in everybody’s mind at the recently concluded Gender Forum in Mombasa. The forum was held against the backdrop of a Mombasa court ruling that dismissed arguments that the practice of anal examination is degrading and amounts to torture and-by extension a violation of one’s rights.

During the May 2016 Gender Forum, we discussed what Feminism means for Kenyan women from different perspectives and facets, and a man asked an important question. His question was, with all this feminism and equality things, what would happen when women achieve this? Wouldn’t women seek to harm men?

Broadening the Conversation on the Police-Civilian Relationship

On January 28th, 2016, HBS Nairobi convened a panel to discuss the relationship between civilians and the police in a discussion dubbed “Missing Voices”. The panel, comprised of L. Muthoni Wanyeki, Regional Director for Amnesty international in East Africa; Wanjeri Nderu, a social media activist and the founder of the Empowering Communities Community Organisation and Ruth Mumbi, a community organiser and activist, and moderated by Yvonne Okwarah from the Kenya Television Network (KTN), aimed to give voice to victims of police brutality and violence, but also the challenges facing the police, in order to point out some of the contextual issues that have led to an alarming rate of police brutality in the country and completely eroded the trust between individuals and police.

Gender Forum - October 2015

The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) were agreed upon in September 2015. The goals, 17 in total, aim to complete what the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) didn’t achieve as well as address the root causes of poverty and inequality.

Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) is a vice that has affected Kenya for decades. Despite several interventions by the government and NGOs, FGM continues to persist in certain communities in the country. National statistics indicate that the FGM prevalence rate stands at 27%.

For many years in Kenya, domestic violence has been meted out on men, women and children but there was no specific legislation on such a crime. In May 2015, the Protection Against Domestic Violence Act (PADV) 2015 was accented to and its commencement date was June 2015.

30 April 2015 - Do women in agriculture recognize the business opportunities? Why don’t banks finance women agri-entrepreneurs? What is the Government of Kenya doing to ensure women agri-entrepreneurs the same opportunities as men?

These were some of the questions raised during a one-day workshop and forum on Women in Agribusiness convened by World Bank Group Fellow, Dr. Rahma Adam, with support from HBS Nairobi.

The Two-Third Gender Majority Representation Principle: Politics of Gender and the “Where Next?”

Stretching the length of time seems like a very attractive idea for Kenyan legislators today. About 21 weeks to an August 2015 legislative deadline, consensus inside and out of Parliament has not been reached on a formula to ensure equitable gender representation in subsequent parliaments in line with Article 27(8) of the Constitution.

Representatives of various lobby groups attended and presented their various formulae and strategies toward gender-equitable representation in national parliament at the Heinrich Boell Stiftung’s Gender Forum on 26th March 2015

L-R: Senator Naisula Lesuuda and Ms. Veronica Lekopole, Centre for Advocacy and Gender Equity, Samburu County

The World Health Organisation (WHO) estimates that approximately 125 million girls and women alive today had been subjected to Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) in 29 countries, mainly in Africa and the Middle East where FGM is prevalent. On the 26th of February 2015, Heinrich Boell Foundation’s Nairobi office once again convened the monthly Gender Forum at the Nairobi Safari Club, with the agenda of addressing FGM in Kenya. In a highly emotional ambience, people from different backgrounds in Kenya came together to discuss FGM in Kenya and what can be done to fight the vice.

Two Thirds Gender Rule in the National Assembly and the Senate

To fully realize the two thirds gender rule in the national Assembly and the Senate, Kenyans will have to agree to a minimum constitutional amendment. This was the message that was given at the monthly Gender Forum on November 27.

Dialogue with a gendered lens

The Gender Forum is a monthly public dialogue convened by the Heinrich Böll Stiftung since 2001, encouraging dialogue on pertinent national social issues with a gendered lens. It brings together scholars, law makers and implementers, civil activists, government institutions, students and the general public, aiming at increasing knowledge and effectiveness of policy and programmes. The forum is convened in Nairobi, in Kisumu (in conjunction with Kenya Female Advisory Organisation KEFEADO) and it travels around Kenya in response to County interests.


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