PBI-Canada attends PBI-UK organized webinar with Kenyan human rights defenders

Published by Brent Patterson on

On June 3, Peace Brigades International-Canada attended the ‘Government and grassroots responses in Kenya’ webinar organized by PBI-United Kingdom.

To watch the 1-hour webinar, please click here.

The webinar featured as speakers: Editar Adhiambo Ochieng, the founder of Feminists for Peace, Rights and Justice Centre, and a PBI Toolkit Organizer; Naomi Barasa, a consultant in strategic campaigning, as well as a researcher and trainer; and Gacheke Gachihi, the coordinator of the Mathare Social Justice Centre.

It was chaired by Susi Bascon, the London-based Director of Peace Brigades International (PBI) UK Section since 1998.

The panel discussed their experiences of the pandemic lockdown, access to essentials, and stories of mutual aid in the urban settlements of Nairobi.

PBI established the Kenya Project in December 2012.

Our 2019 Annual Review notes: “In Kenya PBI supports a range of grassroots defenders across Nairobi’s urban settlements, raising their profile in the national and international contexts. In 2019, defenders took part in advocacy tours to Europe to discuss the challenges they face defending human rights in Kenya.”

PBI-Kenya is part of the Missing Voices network and the Police Reforms Working Group network. It also works with the Mathare Social Justice Centre and Dandora Community Justice Centre as well as other social justice centres in Nairobi.

Prior to the pandemic it was also organizing a monthly in-person mandazi meeting with toolkit organizers on gender-based violence. A mandazi is a fried snack, similar to a doughnut, only triangular and far less sweet. Mandazis are always had with tea and it’s a time to gather in solidarity and share stories, initiatives, problems and successes. During the pandemic, those monthly meetings have continued virtually.

On February 20 of this year, PBI-Kenya posted: “The delegation from the Alliance for Lawyers at Risk and PBI-UK met with International Justice Mission and joined the Women Human Rights Defender (WHRD) Toolkit Organizers for a community town hall meeting on SGBV [sexual and gender-based violence] in Mathare.”

The Feminists for Peace, Rights and Justice Centre also posted: “Thank you PBI-UK for visiting our office and learning from each other on how to strengthen our working relationship as toolkits organisers in Kenya.”

Be sure to join the next PBI-UK organized webinar – ‘Defending human rights under lockdown in Latin America’ – happening on June 10.


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