Every year, Caritas Nairobi Dinner brings together stakeholders, friends and the Caritas Nairobi Family Network to fundraise for a cause. This year’s dinner scheduled on December 2nd focuses on rescuing the boy child from the moral decay that the society has directly and indirectly inflicted on him.
Over the years, a lot of emphasis has been put on the girl child to ensure that her rights are taken care of interms of protection against violence, access to education, empowerment among other issues. While these efforts have bought about positive change and a paradigm shift on how the girl child issues are handle, the boy child has subconsciously been forget in the midst of it all.
While the girl child is enjoying her freedom and coming out of her shell, the boy is fighting to treated better. Yet the expectations placed on boy child are huge yet the society does less interms of support to ensure that indeed the boy child not only performs but surpasses the set societal standards.
The boy child has been brought up to believe that he is not supposed to show weakness; most cultures believe a man keeps his issues to himself. As a result, a majority of boys and men are suffering and the effects are adverse. Mr. Martin Mburu, the Director of The Corner Brook School and a boy child champion, during the Launch of the UN HeforShe in the Archdiocese of Nairobi observed, “Men have gone on strike because they are a forgotten lot. The society needs to empower boys, inculcating in them the culture of responsibility and hard work; sweating for that ultimate success.”
The boy child is under siege, facing challenges of modern times and not knowing who to turn to. In Kiambu County which the Archdiocese of Nairobi serves, alcoholism and drug abuse is very high and poverty is crippling. These conditions do not favour the boy child and intervention is crucial before our young male generation gets consumes
Caritas Nairobi Boy Child Plans
The target for the Beacon boy child project will be the Pontifical Society of Missionary Childhood (PMC) age 9-13 and Missionary Youth Movement Groups (MYM) age 14-17. It is expected that every Parish will have a Beacon Boy Child Project but those in charge will be the CMA members for easy management of the programme. Each Catholic Members Association (CMA) in the Parish will have a man in charge of the boy child program to coordinate the activities and link with the Caritas Office.
Caritas Nairobi will identify and engage facilitators for the boy child program. The office will also ensure that activities organized take place. Communication between the Parish Program and Caritas Office will be channeled through the CMA leadership in the Parish.
It is expected that at the end of the project, it will impact on not just the boy child but the entire society through increased Peace and harmony, reduced crime cases, Improved performance in school and Strong and healthy youths. There will also be increased sense of responsibility by the fathers to their sons.
Goal “A committed and responsible boy child in the society supported by an empowered man capable and willing to take his roles in the society”
Objectives of the Beacon Boy Child Program
Overall, The Beacon Boy Child Program through a range of initiatives, is aimed to:
- Instill a sense of responsibility in mentorship of the boy child by the men
- Instill moral and ethical values to reach boys in all 13 Deaneries in the Archdiocese of Nairobi
- Reduce the level of Boy-child school dropout rate
- Create a seamless transition from PMC, youth and finally to CMA
- Develop an Alcohol and Drug Abuse Intervention Programme
- Expand collaborations with other stakeholders in empowering the boy child
- A committed and responsible boy child
- Increased involvement of Boys in church activities
- Increase in boy child performance in school
- Increased retention of the boy child in school
- Established Alcohol and Drug Abuse Intervention Programme
- Increased involvement of men in mentoring the boy child
- Develop a mentorship program for men to boys
- Facilitate training of trainers for identified boy mentors
- Develop a training manual syllabus to be used in trainings
- Adopt a boy strategy for school monitoring
- Organize cultural festivals during school holidays to enhance sense of belonging
- Establish Collaborations with other stakeholders
- Facilitate Talent identification and development through Social interaction forums i.e. sports tournaments
- Establish an Alcohol and Drug Abuse Intervention Programme
- Develop Publicity Materials
- Bible quiz competitions, catholic social teachings,