Gabriel Odhiambo(Gabby) is a fellow with Tatua Kenya from Mukuru kwa Njenga running a campaign on child labor and Education. In his community children engage in manual labor at a very tender age at the expense of their education. Their parents also seems to be comfortable with that worrying trend due to the economic hardships of life, this being the primary reason for allowing their children to find work instead of going to school.What Gabby wonders is whether the parents are aware of the consequences of this action. For the last two months, the 2014 Tatua Kenya fellows have been conducting listening projects (the first stage in a social change campaign) in order to get a better understanding of the issues and people in their various communities.Gabby is almost done with his Listening interviews which are helping him establish the real issue behind this problem. What are the parent’s thoughts on their children’s future? What could be done towards solving this challenge?
He will soon be hosting the community for open forums to widely discuss this issue as well as engage them in a collective decision making process. Through leading his community towards making small commitments such as ensuring children attend school while parents work, they can establish an effective community parenting network that will ensure children’s rights are adhered to and that they are free from abuse.
Child labor and poverty are inevitably bound together and if you continue to use the labor of children as the treatment for the social disease of poverty, you will have both poverty and child labor to the end of time- Grace Abbott
Why do you think it is important to listen out to the community? What other commitments do you think parents and the community as a whole can make towards creating a solution to this challenge?