Kenya: Declaration of the Beneficiaries of Charitable Children's Institutions At a Conference in Nairobi
On December 8 2012 more than 200 young men and ladies, who had some experience of street life and were rescued from it by charitable children institutions in Nairobi (CCIs), gathered for their first ever conference.
Dubbed kongamano la vijana kwa base (Swahili for Forum of Youth of the Base, base having the meaning of the meeting place in the streets), the conference was held at Shalom House all day long. It brought together beneficiaries from over 10 CCIs to participate in a deliberation forum to give feedback to the CCIs on the services they offer.
Kongamano la vijana kwa Base is an initiative of Koinonia Old Beneficiaries Welfare Association (KOBWA) attended by other very important organizations like KESCA, Consolation Africa, Thomas Bernardo's Home and Rescue Dada. It was the culmination of a process that started in August 2012 .
The former beneficiaries had an opportunity to share their life experiences, perspectives and a chance to propose the way forward on how to improve the process of rescue and reintegration.
Here is the final document.
Declaration of the Beneficiaries of Charitable Children's Institutions At the First Kongamano La Vijana Kwa Base Conference Shalom House, Nairobi, 8th December, 2012
We, the beneficiaries of Charitable Children's Institutions (CCIs), have come together to establish a movement for the promotion of best practices in the CCIs. We assert our commitment to the use of dialogue, genuineness and compassion between us and the Caregivers as a way to uphold Human Dignity, Peace, Love, Justice and Harmony in the CCIs.
Together we declare that:
We shall strive to promote the inalienable rights of the children and reject all injustices against our innocent and vulnerable brothers and sisters within the CCIs, especially when this is done in the name of the law and of organizational policies. We therefore call for a stronger network and collaboration between the Government Institutions and the CCIs.
We shall work towards mutual understanding and respect among ourselves, the society at large and the Caregivers within the CCIs through advocacy, Education, Conferences, Symposia and free Social Integration.
The CCIs form an integral part of our growth and development. We therefore state categorically that the Caregivers should preserve all the records and documentation about the lives of the children under their care, and keep them confidential, but avail them later to the beneficiaries when they become of age.
In accordance with the bill of rights of the republic of Kenya, we affirm the right of each child to worship and to freely access institutions of faith without the fear of admonition or expulsion from the CCIs.
Our unique identities and diverse cultural values form the basis of our existence. We thus urge the Caregivers to be passionate in dealing with children and their families to inculcate values in the children without patronage and manipulation. This will assist in achieving a sustainable reintegration of the beneficiaries of the CCIs back to the society through empowerment and close follow-up.
We offer our heartfelt prayers and give thanks to the Almighty God for bringing us together to work for the promotion of children's Rights for all the vulnerable children living within and outside the CCIs.