Safe Space for the Girl Child

Constance Ndeleko                              

What they need is a safe space and there’s need for equal opportunity for both girls and boys in the society. We cannot assumes that they don’t know of the changes but we should let them learn from us to make the feel whole by talking to them, to accept their status and that they are beautiful the way they are.

Girls have been struggling up the ladder to be visible and they need total support from a serene environment that cares and provides for them regardless to realize their potential.

The time is now when we should have the one on one talk to understand where we are going wrong as a society and improve on it because if we think that these children don’t know of what is happening in their environs then, we are wrong and we need to confront these issues as they come.

Mary during her presentation of the petition on the International Day of the Girl on behalf of student from different schools in Nairobi and the Girl Child advocates for, ’A Safe Space for Girl’s both in private and public space ,homes, schools, on the streets while using public transport.

Safe Space: This is an environment for girls that is either formal or informal where they feel physically and emotionally safe, which is in absence of trauma, stress, fear or violence. Safe space is a strategy aimed at ensuring that we protect and empower girls and women. Well this doesn’t only apply to the girl child but it should be passed by to the boy child also.

Why safe Space? Over the years it has not been easy for girls to come out and speak candidly of the happenings in their lives and neither has it made a big difference now. We need to come out strongly and fight for our girls as we create a conducive environment for them to come and talk to us about the body changes, relationships, co-curriculum activities and their academics.

We should not inflict them with the fear of not speak freely but we should guide them through the right networks that are safe for them. We should speak to them by creating and spending time to understand what they want, who they are, who they want to be, what are their goals, what are their achievements  and failures so that we can grow and build them to be dignified, self-conscious, self-aware and structure a strong foundation that will support their growth and development.

This safe spaces should come from within and from outside. They are young souls whose hormones are actively changing in a rapid manner and SNAP! They really need to understand the sexual reproductive health ASAP! Safe space comes in from either public or private place such as public transport system, police stations, shopping centers and public space -in case of sexual assault/harassment is there a safe space, where you can report? To whom will you report it to? How will you report it? This is A call to everyone to ensure we prioritize the well-being of the girl child.

In our judicial system toady Gender Based Violence cases are taking way too long to be resolved which is not fare and safe for our girls out, they live with the fear that the perpetrator of either rape, defilement or serious crimes might harm them or the next girl even when they are released. It is a plea to the government and the judicial system to carry the matter with utmost sensitivity and speed to see the victims into justice.

Well we cannot end without touching on cleanliness which is most important part for any girl. There’s need to teach about hygiene and sanitation, Water, health and decent housing even in the informal settlements where some of these resources are rare amenities.

If it calls for a review of the already existing Children’s Act then let’s do it and also ensure that the National Government develops an inclusive policy that will help the girl child to identify, prevent and respond to Gender Based Violence and protection of Children Rights.

Every woman is a girl throughout the life stages and we come all together to insulate one another from social pressure especially to the girls where sometimes we set high expectation for them and they end up all messed up and missing their own lives.

There’s need to create an atmosphere that doesn’t force these girls to retract but blossom and flourish in life through good advocacy, mentor-ship and training in a strong support system. It doesn’t need to be your own kid you can do it for other kids, they are all special and they need you to be there for them.

Teach them how to fight for it and how they can transit and surpass turmoil’s that might be obstacles in their lives. There’s no problem that is permanent it is how we see ourselves through it and how we fight out. Let’s give girls resources and tools to prosper gain not saying that the Boy child should be left behind!

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