Popular media personality Janet Mbugua has officially opened the doors to ‘Inua Dada Centre’, a brainchild of her efforts towards Menstrual Equality, Gender Equality and fighting Gender Based Violence(GBV) with Inua Dada Foundation.
The launch event went down at the Inua Dada Centre in Korogocho on October 8, 2021. Many industry experts were on the invite list and graced the event.
The Inua Dada Foundation was first launched back in 2013 and registered in 2014 after Mbugua saw a gap in the society affecting millions of Kenyan girls and women. The event was graced by the First Lady of Kenya Her Excellency Margaret Kenyatta who is the founder of Beyond Zero campaign and with whom matters of the girl child are honoured.
As stipulated from the inception of Inua Dada, the foundation seeks to amplify and intervene in matters regarding Menstrual Inequality, Gender Equality and fighting Gender Based Violence(GBV).
Through the foundation, Mbugua has managed and overseen the distribution of Dignity Kits, published ‘My First Time’ (a first of its kind in the region, which seeks to address period stigma and policy), and now launched the Inua Dada Centre.
The Inua Dada centre is providing safe spaces, both on the digital front on ground, to create awareness in social justice issues, access to reproductive health and rights information, psychosocial support for survivors of GBV and support for teen mothers, uplifting the community on girl at a time.
“I hold the firm belief that when everyone is included, everyone wins and this is the only way we can ensure that gender equity and economic empowerment programs continue being prioritized across the social and political spectrum. Spaces like the one in Korogocho, should exist everywhere, because they offer a chance for people to gain knowledge and access, allowing them a fair chance to thrive. A core element of the work we have slowly begun carrying out is a focus on public speaking, which allows for people to articulate their issues and demand their rights. In many ways, the worlds of advocacy, access, agency and amplification come alive through the centre and on to our platforms, at Inua Dada” says Janet Mbugua, Founder of the Inua Dada Foundation.
The launch of Inua Dada Centre could not have been made possible without the help of a number of stakeholders including Dr. Ademola Olajide of UNFPA Kenya, Kate Maina-Vorley, Country Director of Plan International, Elizabeth Obanda, representing UN Women Kenya, a representative of the County Commissioner and CAS Nadia Abdalla most of whom graced the official launch on October 8th, 2021.
“Even the best cooking pot cannot produce food without the effort of the cook. Community members must be enabled, through gender sensitive interventions to meaningfully participate in the process of policy development and implementation. #LeaveNoOneBehind #TheMarchContinues’’ Said Dr. Ademola Olajide,United Nations Population Fund’s (UNFPA) Representative for Kenya.
A jubilated Mbugua spoke of the essence of the newly-launched centre to girls and women in Kenya, the journey that has led her there and what a milestone it is to her and the Inua Dada Community.
“The centre is a space that provides access to information and awareness on reproductive health and rights plus access to sanitary products, psychosocial support for survivors of #gbv, economic empowerment opportunities and public speaking tools, to allow for everyone, especially girls, to be able to speak up for their rights. We’re seeking to reach the wider community, one girl at a time!
“There is a lot of work that remains to be done and the centre addresses aspects of this. We would like to double our efforts on the digital front and on ground through the centre, reaching close to 5,000 girls and women by mid 2022 and 10 million on our digital footprint,” said Janet Mbugua