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GENDER AND HIV/AIDS EDUCATION IN THE MULTICULTURAL CONTEXT OF SCHOOLS IN KAKUMA REFUGEE CAMP AND ITS HOST COMMUNITY IN KENYA By By Rubai Mandela Ochieng.

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Presentation on theme: "GENDER AND HIV/AIDS EDUCATION IN THE MULTICULTURAL CONTEXT OF SCHOOLS IN KAKUMA REFUGEE CAMP AND ITS HOST COMMUNITY IN KENYA By By Rubai Mandela Ochieng."— Presentation transcript:

1 GENDER AND HIV/AIDS EDUCATION IN THE MULTICULTURAL CONTEXT OF SCHOOLS IN KAKUMA REFUGEE CAMP AND ITS HOST COMMUNITY IN KENYA By By Rubai Mandela Ochieng (PhD) Department of Educational Foundations KENYATTA UNIVERSITY KENYA 1 XIX INTERNATIONAL AIDS CONFERENCE WASHINGTON D.C., USA JULY 2012

2 Background and Introduction HIV/AIDS remains a major developmental challenge affecting all sectors. By the end of the year 2010, at least 34 million people worldwide were living with HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS, 2011). Positive results are beginning to be seen in Kenya.HIV/AIDS remains a major developmental challenge affecting all sectors. By the end of the year 2010, at least 34 million people worldwide were living with HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS, 2011). Positive results are beginning to be seen in Kenya. In the absence of a cure, prevention has become the principle strategy of dealing with the HIV/AIDS problem. This is done through HIV/AIDS education as a social vaccine that mainly targets children below 14 years of age.In the absence of a cure, prevention has become the principle strategy of dealing with the HIV/AIDS problem. This is done through HIV/AIDS education as a social vaccine that mainly targets children below 14 years of age. While Kenya advocates for a multi-sectoral approach to dealing with the HIV/AIDS problem, efforts by the MOE have been noteworthy. They include: HIV/AIDS education curriculum of the year 2000, Education sector policy on HIV/AIDS of the year 2004 and integration strategies ( RoK, 2006).While Kenya advocates for a multi-sectoral approach to dealing with the HIV/AIDS problem, efforts by the MOE have been noteworthy. They include: HIV/AIDS education curriculum of the year 2000, Education sector policy on HIV/AIDS of the year 2004 and integration strategies ( RoK, 2006). HIV/AIDS education has been experiencing problems in regular schools for which it was designed due to factors such as resistance from communities, lack of resources and teacher training (Boler et al. 2003).HIV/AIDS education has been experiencing problems in regular schools for which it was designed due to factors such as resistance from communities, lack of resources and teacher training (Boler et al. 2003). There has been a dearth of knowledge regarding how refugee boys and girls engage with HIV/AIDS education with an already loaded curriculum in a multicultural and multi-religious context.There has been a dearth of knowledge regarding how refugee boys and girls engage with HIV/AIDS education with an already loaded curriculum in a multicultural and multi-religious context.

3 Researching HIV/AIDS Education in Kenya Studies by Boler et al., (2003), Advisory Board Company and Caiser Family Foundation (2008) and UNICEF ESARO (2002) provided evidence to suggest that HIV/AIDS education in regular schools experienced resistance from communities and teachers as well as lack of training and learning material. Saroke and Mutemi (1999), Hyde, Ekatan, Kiage and Barasa (2000), Curr-Hill et al., (2002), Pattman and Chege (2003), Ochieng (2004) and Ruto, Wawire and Chege (2008) among other researchers also tended to concentrate on regular schools with specific focus on how HIV/AIDS education was taught.Studies by Boler et al., (2003), Advisory Board Company and Caiser Family Foundation (2008) and UNICEF ESARO (2002) provided evidence to suggest that HIV/AIDS education in regular schools experienced resistance from communities and teachers as well as lack of training and learning material. Saroke and Mutemi (1999), Hyde, Ekatan, Kiage and Barasa (2000), Curr-Hill et al., (2002), Pattman and Chege (2003), Ochieng (2004) and Ruto, Wawire and Chege (2008) among other researchers also tended to concentrate on regular schools with specific focus on how HIV/AIDS education was taught. Studies done in Kenyan refugee camps on HIV/AIDS awareness such as Nkam (2001), Mumah et al. (2003), UNHCR and GLIA (2004) focused on the general refugee population outside the school setting, revealing a gap of similar knowledge within refugee school settings.Studies done in Kenyan refugee camps on HIV/AIDS awareness such as Nkam (2001), Mumah et al. (2003), UNHCR and GLIA (2004) focused on the general refugee population outside the school setting, revealing a gap of similar knowledge within refugee school settings. It was noteworthy that since 1999 when HIV/AIDS was declared a national disaster, remarkably little attention had been paid to education of refugee children in relation to HIV/AIDS education.It was noteworthy that since 1999 when HIV/AIDS was declared a national disaster, remarkably little attention had been paid to education of refugee children in relation to HIV/AIDS education.

4 Statement of the Problem While research has shown that HIV/AIDS education has posed challenges in regular schools for which it was designed, there has been a dearth of knowledge concerning how the subject is taught to boys and girls in more complex multicultural and multi-religious refugee schools, which operate half day with a loaded curriculum. This study therefore undertook to find out how gender, multicultural and multi-religious beliefs and practices singly and interactively influenced teaching and learning of HIV/AIDS education among pupils at KRC and the surrounding HC primary schools.

5 Objectives of the Study The study sought to: Establish how the multicultural, religious and gender factors, influence teaching and learning of HIV/AIDS education for refugee pupils in terms of content, method and perceptions.Establish how the multicultural, religious and gender factors, influence teaching and learning of HIV/AIDS education for refugee pupils in terms of content, method and perceptions. Examine the capacity of male and female teachers in teaching HIV/AIDS education in a multicultural and multi-religious context of refugee schools.Examine the capacity of male and female teachers in teaching HIV/AIDS education in a multicultural and multi-religious context of refugee schools. Establish the links between KRC HIV/AIDS education programme and the programmes in regular schools in the surrounding host community.Establish the links between KRC HIV/AIDS education programme and the programmes in regular schools in the surrounding host community. Generate recommendations on good practices to improve HIV/AIDS education for pupils in refugee- affected communities.Generate recommendations on good practices to improve HIV/AIDS education for pupils in refugee- affected communities. This presentation focuses on the first objective.

6 Research Design and Methodology This was a qualitative case study designed to help capture the childrens voices as experts in their own experiences of learning HIV/AIDS education. It utilized semi-structured interviews, FGDs, Observation, Drawing and Documentary Analysis.This was a qualitative case study designed to help capture the childrens voices as experts in their own experiences of learning HIV/AIDS education. It utilized semi-structured interviews, FGDs, Observation, Drawing and Documentary Analysis. The study location was KRC and its host community. KRC was established in 1992 in Turkana district, in the north western part of Kenya. The area is arid and has relatively poor infrastructure and weak social services. It is occupied by local pastoralists from Turkana Ethnic group.The study location was KRC and its host community. KRC was established in 1992 in Turkana district, in the north western part of Kenya. The area is arid and has relatively poor infrastructure and weak social services. It is occupied by local pastoralists from Turkana Ethnic group. The refugee population at KRC was approximately 87, 507 and it comprised Sudanese (78.55%), Somalis (16.6%), Ethiopians (3.25%), Rwandese, Burundians, Congolese, Eritereans, Ugandans and others forming 1.59%. The locals are Turkanas (UNHCR, 2008).The refugee population at KRC was approximately 87, 507 and it comprised Sudanese (78.55%), Somalis (16.6%), Ethiopians (3.25%), Rwandese, Burundians, Congolese, Eritereans, Ugandans and others forming 1.59%. The locals are Turkanas (UNHCR, 2008). The study utilized 6 primary schools, that is, 3 from KRC and 3 from the host community which were selected through stratified random and purposive sampling.The study utilized 6 primary schools, that is, 3 from KRC and 3 from the host community which were selected through stratified random and purposive sampling. The main targets were standard seven boys and girls.The main targets were standard seven boys and girls. In total, 617 individuals comprising 422 males and 195 females, were involved in this study. Of this total, there were 330 Sudanese, 130 Kenyans, 85 Somalis, 33 Ethiopians, 17 Congolese, 8 Ugandans, 8 Rwandese, 4 Burundians and 2 Eritreans. The majority of respondents 516 out of 617 (356 boys and 160 girls) were primary school pupils.In total, 617 individuals comprising 422 males and 195 females, were involved in this study. Of this total, there were 330 Sudanese, 130 Kenyans, 85 Somalis, 33 Ethiopians, 17 Congolese, 8 Ugandans, 8 Rwandese, 4 Burundians and 2 Eritreans. The majority of respondents 516 out of 617 (356 boys and 160 girls) were primary school pupils.

7 Findings The Influence of Gender, Culture and Religion on HIV/AIDS Education. The Influence of Gender, Culture and Religion on HIV/AIDS Education. Same gender clustering explainedSame gender clustering explained by cultural and religious beliefs by cultural and religious beliefs inhibited interactive methods of teaching. Cultural clustering mainly affected the minority often seen as others e.g. Ugandans, Rwandese, Burundians and Eritreans.Cultural clustering mainly affected the minority often seen as others e.g. Ugandans, Rwandese, Burundians and Eritreans. While Christian Turkana and Ugandan girls were open and outgoing in HIV/AIDS education activities, the Somali and Ethiopian Muslim girls remained quiet, reserved and shy as a way of showing respect to male teachers and pupils, as would be expected by their religion and culture.While Christian Turkana and Ugandan girls were open and outgoing in HIV/AIDS education activities, the Somali and Ethiopian Muslim girls remained quiet, reserved and shy as a way of showing respect to male teachers and pupils, as would be expected by their religion and culture.

8 Kenyan Christian teachers misinterpreted the behaviour of Muslim Somali and Ethiopian girls to mean rudeness. They argued thus:Kenyan Christian teachers misinterpreted the behaviour of Muslim Somali and Ethiopian girls to mean rudeness. They argued thus: Mr. Sunguti: … when you go in and try to talk to them about matters of HIV/AIDS and sexuality, you find them looking down, whispering, covering their faces and that is very funny according to me. Its quite annoying and uncomfortable to teach such girls. Mr. Sunguti: … when you go in and try to talk to them about matters of HIV/AIDS and sexuality, you find them looking down, whispering, covering their faces and that is very funny according to me. Its quite annoying and uncomfortable to teach such girls. Mr. Wendo: I have also observed what my colleague is trying to say and am not comfortable with the behaviour. In fact that is one of the reasons why I avoid even mentioning HIV/AIDS or anything to do with sexuality in class (Teacher FGD – HC Prudence Academy) Mr. Wendo: I have also observed what my colleague is trying to say and am not comfortable with the behaviour. In fact that is one of the reasons why I avoid even mentioning HIV/AIDS or anything to do with sexuality in class (Teacher FGD – HC Prudence Academy) Girls found the behaviour of boys during HIV/AIDS education intimidating (especially with a female teacher) and therefore disliked mixed gender fora for the subject.Girls found the behaviour of boys during HIV/AIDS education intimidating (especially with a female teacher) and therefore disliked mixed gender fora for the subject. Gendered interests were noted in HIV/AIDS education topics with boys preferring the sexual content and girls love and care of PLWHAS.Gendered interests were noted in HIV/AIDS education topics with boys preferring the sexual content and girls love and care of PLWHAS.

9 Cont. GIRLS DRAWINGS BOYS DRAWINGS

10 Cont. There were differences in the way male and female teachers were perceived in regard to their age. While older male and female teachers were culturally regarded as parents and therefore respected, young female teachers were seen as afraid age-mates and young male teachers perceived as having a hidden sex agenda.There were differences in the way male and female teachers were perceived in regard to their age. While older male and female teachers were culturally regarded as parents and therefore respected, young female teachers were seen as afraid age-mates and young male teachers perceived as having a hidden sex agenda. For a young man, he might be teaching but nothing is entering our minds, because he might teach while looking at other people (other girls) inside the class, not directly…not even seeing the board…we might not know whom he is looking at but some of us will know and sense that, that person is doing something. (Laughter) (Sophie-Ugandan- Girls FGD, KRC Patience Girls School). For a young man, he might be teaching but nothing is entering our minds, because he might teach while looking at other people (other girls) inside the class, not directly…not even seeing the board…we might not know whom he is looking at but some of us will know and sense that, that person is doing something. (Laughter) (Sophie-Ugandan- Girls FGD, KRC Patience Girls School). The female teacher was not constructed in the same manner in different contexts.The female teacher was not constructed in the same manner in different contexts. Female teachers are like our mothers, you see, they know how to teach children. As much as male teachers are trying, I find female teachers better than male teachers (Peter-Boys FGD, KRC Peace Co-educational School). Female teachers are like our mothers, you see, they know how to teach children. As much as male teachers are trying, I find female teachers better than male teachers (Peter-Boys FGD, KRC Peace Co-educational School). … but the problem with female teachers is that they like gossiping. Even when they teach about HIV/AIDS and you dont understand or you ask a funny question or give a wrong answer to a question, that becomes the story when they see or meet you (Norah-Girls FGD, HC Charity Co- educational School)

11 Let me tell you another weakness of female teachers. When they come to class and you dont answer a question well, they beat you up and tell you that in future you will get children and you will be using your pants as napkins, because there is nothing you understand. You are just wasting your time here, just thinking about your husbands out there in the village. I dont like the female teachers (Rosa-Girls FGD, HC Charity Co-educational School). Let me tell you another weakness of female teachers. When they come to class and you dont answer a question well, they beat you up and tell you that in future you will get children and you will be using your pants as napkins, because there is nothing you understand. You are just wasting your time here, just thinking about your husbands out there in the village. I dont like the female teachers (Rosa-Girls FGD, HC Charity Co-educational School). Religious beliefs influenced the expectations of learners regarding the gender of the HIV/AIDS education teacher with Muslims preferring teachers of the same gender as learners.Religious beliefs influenced the expectations of learners regarding the gender of the HIV/AIDS education teacher with Muslims preferring teachers of the same gender as learners. Religion interacted with gender to determine teachers interpretation of HIV/AIDS education content. Hence, male and female teachers from similar religious backgrounds send different and sometimes contradicting messages.Religion interacted with gender to determine teachers interpretation of HIV/AIDS education content. Hence, male and female teachers from similar religious backgrounds send different and sometimes contradicting messages. The cultural aspect of linguistic diversityThe cultural aspect of linguistic diversity enhanced communicability of IEC enhanced communicability of IEC material, which however were prepared material, which however were prepared by male pupils for the male. by male pupils for the male.

12 Cont. Gender, Religion and culture influenced the acceptability and utilization of IEC materials. Females across religious and cultural divides seemed shun T-shirts with messages on AIDS. In the same way, Muslim and Ethiopian girls could not adorn T-shirts and caps with messages on HIV/AIDS.Gender, Religion and culture influenced the acceptability and utilization of IEC materials. Females across religious and cultural divides seemed shun T-shirts with messages on AIDS. In the same way, Muslim and Ethiopian girls could not adorn T-shirts and caps with messages on HIV/AIDS. While boys preferred sports and games, which were associated with strength, girls in constructing themselves in opposition to boys, shunned sports and games in order to preserve virginity, show good manners, minimise interaction with boys and avoid games attire discouraged by their religious and cultural groups.While boys preferred sports and games, which were associated with strength, girls in constructing themselves in opposition to boys, shunned sports and games in order to preserve virginity, show good manners, minimise interaction with boys and avoid games attire discouraged by their religious and cultural groups. Drama, music and poetry were mainly feminised and therefore, shunned by boys who wanted to construct themselves in opposition to girls. These activities, which were popular with Ugandan girls, utilised linguistic diversity to contribute to multicultural educating.Drama, music and poetry were mainly feminised and therefore, shunned by boys who wanted to construct themselves in opposition to girls. These activities, which were popular with Ugandan girls, utilised linguistic diversity to contribute to multicultural educating. MALE ONLY BILLBOARDS ILLUSTRATING PREVENTION OF HIV

13 Video and film as a mode of teaching traversed cultural and religious barriers. However, video content that showed the real sexual activity seemed destructive and hence raised questions regarding its educational value.Video and film as a mode of teaching traversed cultural and religious barriers. However, video content that showed the real sexual activity seemed destructive and hence raised questions regarding its educational value. Religious clubs encouraged division of pupils along cultural lines and also stressed different topics of HIV/AIDS which were sometimes wrongly interpreted by those with less competence in religious matters.Religious clubs encouraged division of pupils along cultural lines and also stressed different topics of HIV/AIDS which were sometimes wrongly interpreted by those with less competence in religious matters. SGBV club encouraged exclusion of boys from its HIV/AIDS activities due to the teachers misinterpretation of gender to mean girls and women.SGBV club encouraged exclusion of boys from its HIV/AIDS activities due to the teachers misinterpretation of gender to mean girls and women. The use of question boxes in health education club encouraged participation of boys and girls across cultural and religious divides.The use of question boxes in health education club encouraged participation of boys and girls across cultural and religious divides.

14 Culture and religion interactively determined teachers attitudes towards HIV/AIDS education. Hence, a negative attitude towards the subject was noted among some female Ethiopian and Somali Muslim teachers, who interpreted anything to do with sex education as instilling evil ideas in children.Culture and religion interactively determined teachers attitudes towards HIV/AIDS education. Hence, a negative attitude towards the subject was noted among some female Ethiopian and Somali Muslim teachers, who interpreted anything to do with sex education as instilling evil ideas in children. The teaching force at both KRC and HC schools was male-dominated. This situation disempowered female teachers and pupils and created conflict that could result in the formulation of school policies favouring the male in regard to issues of sexuality and HIV/AIDS education.The teaching force at both KRC and HC schools was male-dominated. This situation disempowered female teachers and pupils and created conflict that could result in the formulation of school policies favouring the male in regard to issues of sexuality and HIV/AIDS education. Cultural representation of teachers did not tally with that of pupils. Consequently, a considerable number of pupils lacked important role models representing their gender and cultural backgrounds.Cultural representation of teachers did not tally with that of pupils. Consequently, a considerable number of pupils lacked important role models representing their gender and cultural backgrounds.

15 15 Conclusion Conclusion This study concludes that gender, multicultural and multi-religious factors interactively influenced HIV/AIDS education in a complex manner that resulted in both positive and negative implications to different categories of learners.This study concludes that gender, multicultural and multi-religious factors interactively influenced HIV/AIDS education in a complex manner that resulted in both positive and negative implications to different categories of learners. Assigning teachers from different religious backgrounds to teach similar topics on HIV/AIDS education to different groups of pupils translates into sending different and sometimes contradictory messages about similar topics.Assigning teachers from different religious backgrounds to teach similar topics on HIV/AIDS education to different groups of pupils translates into sending different and sometimes contradictory messages about similar topics. Involving male pupils in the preparation of IEC material for HIV/AIDS education without proper gender educating may easily lead to gender-biased material that would perpetuate male dominance and patriarchy through HIV/AIDS education programmes utilizing such material.Involving male pupils in the preparation of IEC material for HIV/AIDS education without proper gender educating may easily lead to gender-biased material that would perpetuate male dominance and patriarchy through HIV/AIDS education programmes utilizing such material.

16 Recommendations Recommendations The MOE through KIE should come up with a comprehensive teacher training curriculum that would equip teachers with knowledge and skills on gender-responsive education as well as multicultural educationThe MOE through KIE should come up with a comprehensive teacher training curriculum that would equip teachers with knowledge and skills on gender-responsive education as well as multicultural education HIV/AIDS education should not only be integrated with other subjects but also taught as a stand-alone subject with specialised teachers in regular schools.HIV/AIDS education should not only be integrated with other subjects but also taught as a stand-alone subject with specialised teachers in regular schools. Schools need to be sensitive to girls concerns by sensitizing boys and teachers on the need to respect girls as well as boys. Rather than separating girls and boys, schools should encourage boys to be supportive of girls as equal human beings with a right to education. In addition, girls need to be empowered and encouraged to engage with boys in classroom learning activities.Schools need to be sensitive to girls concerns by sensitizing boys and teachers on the need to respect girls as well as boys. Rather than separating girls and boys, schools should encourage boys to be supportive of girls as equal human beings with a right to education. In addition, girls need to be empowered and encouraged to engage with boys in classroom learning activities.

17 Cont. Careful editing of videos used for school children to eliminate content that distort learning.Careful editing of videos used for school children to eliminate content that distort learning. Organizations concerned with refugee education to open up teaching opportunities for non-refugee teachers from cultural groups represented by refugee pupils who have no teachers from their communities.Organizations concerned with refugee education to open up teaching opportunities for non-refugee teachers from cultural groups represented by refugee pupils who have no teachers from their communities. Organizations working with refugees to encourage cultural interaction and help refugees appreciate unity in diversity.Organizations working with refugees to encourage cultural interaction and help refugees appreciate unity in diversity. Training on production of gender responsive IEC material that go beyond preventive messages.Training on production of gender responsive IEC material that go beyond preventive messages.

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19 Thank You


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