In the beginning of his second term, President Uhuru Kenyatta, announced that he will focus of 4 key areas, namely Manufacturing, Food and Nutrition security, Universal Health Care and Housing and Shelter, which he dubbed the “Big Four.
The Big Four are meant to accelerate development of Kenya. We at Mtoto News believe that children should be part of the BIG 4 agenda.
For instance in Food and Nutrition security should also focus in scaling up school feeding programs with age appropriate food. It will be also important for the government to build a culture of food security, by involving children in good and Nutrition programs from planning to implementation by for example revive the 4K clubs, where children learn about agriculture.
Manufacturing has the potential of increasing household income hence improving child wellbeing, We also realise that manufacturing can be an opportunity for Children to be innovative, we therfor urge the government to include programs STEM. We also caution the government to ensure that children are protected from labour and neglect.
Universal Health Care is a welcome strategy, we believe that all children get access to vaccines, primary health care and regular check ups. We also welcome the fact all high school studenta Will have access to NHIF and girls will get sanitary pad.
As much we commend the government for, er want to point out that in the last few years violence against children has been on the increase with 70% of Kenyan children have reported to have been violated. This has led the World Health Organization to declare violence against children as a health concern that cost the globe an approximate 700 Billion dollars per year and in Kenya 140Billion Kenya shillings. Hence the need for a deliberate and intentional focus on ending violence against children. This can be through increasing social workforce from the ward level, streanghening the case management system, streanghen the coordination of children services from the ward to the National level, implementation of children policies and child participation.
Housing and Shelter is the first line of protection against child abuse, however the housing should be in away that encourage child development. We also reccomend in planning for housing and Shelter consideration should be put on ensuring children have space to play and have leisure such as play ground, cultural centers and nature walks