The Tana Delta in Kenya has for decades been the scene of violent conflict between two ethnic groups, the dominant Ormo who are nomadic cattle-herders, and the Pokomo, who are farmers. This news article from last year, speaks of the violence which plagues this region.
This month Jon Hargreaves and Alex Stout (HCR UK) traveled to this violence-torn district, accompanied by a young journalist, Alex Williams, who reported on the HCR community workshops conducted. The video report provides a great insight into HCR’s involvement and the hope for a peace-building radio initiative which can help prevent violent attacks occurring in the future. View the video below:
A first consultation and workshop drew key stakeholders from local government and service providers, followed by a second which brought together members of the different tribal communities to work on plans for a community-centred radio station, which will tackle many of the region's problems.
Besides a peace agenda, the station will help promote better farming and irrigation practices, education and health as well as tackling difficult social issues such as witchcraft, female genital mutilation, early marriages, polygamy and segregation against women.
While the project will require foreign funding for the station set-up, it has a great chance of becoming completely locally sustainable within the first year.
Stay tuned for further updates from Jon and Alex as they navigate their way through a very complex situation where tribe, religion, ethnicity, family and politics make a very potent and toxic brew that could flare up in violence at any time.