The efforts of the SDGs Kenya Forum for Sustainable Development provide a platform for civil society to intensify efforts and strengthen other ongoing initiatives and development frameworks implemented by the Kenyan government. CREAW through this platform continues to champion the rights and welfare of women & girls and specifically in Bomet County where our SDGs initiatives are ongoing. Women’s economic rights and opportunities in Bomet as it is in many other counties are undermined by many factors. Social & economic barriers, including retrogressive social and cultural norms, lack of access to capital & credit facilities & limited economic empowerment programs for women, are some of the vices that hinder women from practicing key entrepreneurial activities.
Against this backdrop, the Centre for rights education and awareness (CREAW), the Bomet County Department of Cooperatives, the Women enterprise fund (WEE), and the Co-Operative bank embarked on training women in financial literacy, life skills, entrepreneurship, and diversification of income-generating activities (IGA’s). By targeting one women group per sub-county 131 women have been trained from Bomet East, Bomet Central, Konoin, Sotik, and Chepalungu sub-counties. The training is helpful and women are able to secure funds collectively to start and grow their businesses. “The exposure, skills, and knowledge acquired have transformed our lifestyles, we have changed and no longer brew liquor but instead have been involved in income-generating activities that include selling chapatis, establishing a posho mill, and making beaded bags and flowers. We are now able to pay for our children’s education without strain”. A member of a targeted reformed group of women who engaged in the liquor business before. The income received from the businesses has enabled the women to repay their loans and even seek more loans.
In a bid to establish a young female movement to spur change in Bomet County, CREAW works with young females in a mentorship-based empowerment intervention to foster their participation and inclusion in girls’ formal and informal education. The interventions intend to ensure school retention, life skills, and resilience building while advocating for and supporting access to key services bordering Sexual Reproduction Health rights as provided by both the National and County governments.