By Ndungu Gachane
A lobby group wants government to establish avenues for teenagers to air their sexual and emotional issues to curb social vices that are rampant in the teens ‘world’ due to lack of such avenues.
Centre for Women and Technology CWE-TECH that has been conducting mentoring and counseling sessions in schools say it has found out that many teenagers lack avenues to ventilate their sexual concerns and as a result to unorthodox means and ways to deal with the issues.
Dr Judy Makira, a co-founder of the organization that was founded in 2017 says after listening to teenagers, they decided to push government to create platforms that will give teens the required confidence to bravely air their sexual concerns.
Dr Makira who is also a lecturer at the University of Embu said in their routine mentorship and counseling sessions, they noted that the youth do not have the confidence to talk about their sexual and emotional feelings and that’s when they improvised and generated the idea of convincing them to write on a piece of paper their concerns.
“This is where we learnt that our teenagers have serious issues going on around their lives. Some ventilated and wrote about incest in their families where brothers or sisters demand for sex, others opened up about their hatred to their parents due to various issues,”Dr Makira added.
She attribute rampant cases of social vices such as drug abuse amongst youth, homosexuality among others to lack of platforms to express themselves.
“It is a dangerous trend that needs to be addressed before things get out of hand. The avenues will create a conducive environment to speak out and will give them the much needed confidence,” she added.
She suggested that such avenues should include mentorship weeks in schools where certified counselors will be listening to the teenagers and sort them out as well as making sex education a compulsory and examinable subjects so that the youth takes the issue of sex with the seriousness it deserves.
On her part, CWE- Tech co-founder Eunice Owino urged parents to make it a habit to have time with their teenagers and to normalize having sex debates so that they understand what their children are going through in the sex world.
She said lack of an open and transparent discussion on sex and emotional topics between children and parents worsened the situation saying it is no longer a taboo for a parent to understand and understand their teens’ sexual feelings.
“We encourage our parents to assist teachers in reverting back the river to its original course, women and men must know how their daughters and sons respectively are faring in the world of sex and emotions and guide them accordingly and likewise, teenagers must also be transparent to their parents and this way, we will reduce the social vices,” Dr Makira who serves as Vice Chairperson at Muranga Municipal Board noted.
Through the partnership with Women in Water and Sanitation (WIWAS), RoddenBerry Foundation, United Nations Population Fund UNFPA, the organization has been mentoring and donating inner wears to both boys and girls, sanitary towels and other personal items to keep teenagers in school.
Over the weekend, the group visited Kasipul Kabondo Constituency in Homabay at Gweno Kipodi Primary School where they donated the items to pupils from different schools.
During the function, WIWAS member, Liz Akinyi Amolo who is also the Human Relations Officer at Homa Bay Water and Sanitation Company hailed the partnerships saying they empowered teenagers academically and socially noting that the end result will be enhancing their performance.
She also urged students to prioritize studying hard to fulfill their future aspirations and to become future responsible citizens.
“It is through education that teenagers will become what they want in future, they will also become responsible citizens who will be major stakeholders in the growth of this country,” she said.
The group has also visited schools in Nairobi and Muranga Counties.