The aim of this programme was to enhance women’s rights through accessing them justice at group and individual levels. It used legal aid to provide direct legal representation, advice and referrals to poor women who were also victims of sexual and gender based violence (SGBV). Response to SGBV was located in Kibera, Kamukunji, Makadara and Dagoretti districts of Nairobi.
CREAW worked with community structures to train already established community groups in the target areas on SGBV and the Sexual Offences Act (SOA), 2006. Groups
trained disseminated the information to other community members towards behavior and attitude change. The work took advantage of important calendar events, such as the Day of the African Child to raise awareness on SGBV, children’s rights and Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV). The awareness would in the long run stimulate reporting of SGBV. The programme used Public Interest Litigation (PIL) to prompt judicial pronouncements on certain strategic issues affecting women. PIL reviews administrative or state actions or omissions and is effective in expanding and promoting women’s rights in the respective area. When accompanied with media coverage, PIL is a strategic advocacy and public awareness tool.
From a general perspective, CREAW has registered the following achievements since its formation.
Affirmative Action Campaign: On 25th May 2007, CREAW mobilised and brought together over 12,000 women from all over the country to mark the African Women’s Day and launch the One Million Signature Campaign for Affirmative Action. This was preceded by provincial forums in support of affirmative action and declaration of 2007 as the year of Affirmative Action.
- Civic Education: CREAW successfully implemented the NCEP and GGP in four provinces in Kenya.
- Support to Female Aspirants: In the run-up to the 2007 general elections, CREAW worked with 25 female candidates for civic positions. Five were elected and two nominated. It also worked with eight female parliamentary aspirants one of whom was a presidential candidate. In 2013, it contributed to an increase in the number of women working in the public service and ascending elected political offices (13) hence increased visibility of women in leadership and improved public attitude towards female politicians.
- Public Awareness: There is increased public awareness of women’s/rights and provisions of the SOA. Specifically, more women are aware of their rights and have been able to get their share of matrimonial property following successful suits. The use of community-driven interventions has also improved reporting of SGBV by communities and victims and reduced instances of SGBV.
- Litigation: CREAW has handled over 16,000 cases for and on behalf of the poor and marginalized women of Kenya in pursuit of legal justice. The cases emanated from various violations of women’s human rights (defilements, custody, maintenance, succession and inheritance, division of property, separation and divorce, early marriages, female genital mutilation, citizenship rights and sexual harassment in the work place).
- Legislation: As a member of the Juvenile Justice Network, CREAW was among organisations that drafted, advocated and lobbied for the original Sexual Offences Bill that eventually became the SOA. Thereafter CREAW and partners simplified the Act, translated it into Kiswahili and published 10,000 copies for dissemination. By means of this, CREAW contributed to creating a legal framework for sexual based violence in Kenya. CREAW has also drafted an Affirmative Action Bill which, if enacted, would enable women and other marginalized groups access their rights to effective and meaningful participation in decision making positions in the country. CREAW, with other partners, ensured that the Political Parties Bill was gender sensitive. The Bill was subsequently enacted and became operational in Jul y 2008.
- Reforms: CREAW made inputs in the constitutional review process which led to reflection of women’s rights in the Constitution. It has also contributed to peaceful elections and police reforms. It filed a successful court case challenging the appointment of county commissioners and received a favorable judgement.
- Anti-rape Campaign: CREAW led the Reclaiming Red Rape Spots campaign in some urban centres around the country. CREAW identified notorious rape spots and mobilized duty bearers (police, private sector and urban councils to provide security, lighting and other strategic interventions hence reclaiming these areas for safe use by the public). Through this campaign, CREAW