Field Officer Report on TAK

Hi everyone…. It has been nine months since my employement at karopa tak project aiming at 192 boys and girls made local ambassadors with the power to create social change and less HIV/AIDS stigmatization within August 2016 as the tak project field officer with roles and duties expelled in the work description.
A journey of hundred miles starts with one step and as for the TAK project we started by recruiting tots, tots training at global platform in Nairobi for two weeks, identification and supplying engagement letters to partner schools like Othoro, St.Christine, Kanyangwara, Kang’o, Oriang’ and Atela, finding the patrons from the partner schools, mapping and engaging potential partner organizations such as MOH,DASCO,DCC,JAM,ACTION AID,MSF etc, developing of curricum and questionnaire and more activities.
We started the TAK program with a massive launch that was scheduled at Othoro health center’s ground where several guests, TAK office, six tots, participants, participants ‘parents and karopa members attended. The tots got their respective schools to take through. They were as follows:
Kang’o………. Richard Omondi
St Christine…… Faith Adhiambo
Oriang’………. Mercy Wendy
Othoro………. Winnie Atieno
Atela………… Paul Opiyo
Kanyang’wara….. Judith Atieno
After the launch we started by introducing different topics of study. We did elections for the participants. We proceeded by giving the questionaires on all the main goal of the project to test what they knew and getting to know their expectations.
Some three tots decided to leave immediately we started sessions giving no better reason for resignation. We found it wise therefore to continue with the remaining three tots. They took over as follows: Paul Opiyo doubled (Othoro primary and Atela primary), Mercy Wendy….( St Christine school and Kang’o primary) and finally Judith Atieno…(Oriang’and Kanyang’wara primary)
They did the following topics with the participants:
• Self confidence
• Leadership
• Adolescence stage
• Sex and sex education
• Culture and cultural practices
• Gender equality
• Child abuse
• Stress and stress management
• HIV and AIDS
• Human rights
• Stigma and discrimination
All these were accompanied by many activities like; drawing, singing, dancing, telling stories, writing notes, asking questions, outdoor classes and reading story books. We also got the privilege to attend the World Aids Day with Othoro primary at Oriwo having gotten invitation by DASCO and MOH of Ramula sub district hospital.
Setting the cooperated empowerment projects came after where we gave all the schools five chicks and vegetables seeds. The participants went through training by one Mr.julias obonyo on poultry keeping and covered the following topics:
• Roles of indigenous chicken in household economy
• Gender and indigenous chicken farming
• Poultry production systems
• Cost benefit analysis
• Disease and control
• Record keeping

We provided chicken feeds for a short time and then handed over the responsibility to the school, participants and the patron. The participants did the vegetable nurseries and planted vegetables.
On April holiday we went around for home visits. We walked to the participants’ home talking to their parents about the benefits of their children being in the program and again taking the parent’s consent to test the status of the kids and even willing parents parents were tested voluntarily.
• I had the best and cooperative tots; that is Wendy, Paul and Judith. They worked as a team giving me the easiest time and delivered all they were to give to the participants
• Some schools were fast in setting up their projects like Kang’o
• There is a great improvement in participation in all the schools and the shyness has been dealt with in most participants
• Participants are very active and ask a lot of questions
• Most sessions had excellent attendance
• There is an improved cooperation and relationship between the schools and Karopa
• It was a wonderful experience when some participants could come out and share stories. One from St Christine shared a story about his dad’s condition who is living positive
• During an invitation to the World Aids Day, the participants came out by themselves and accepted to be tested. This was also seen during home visits when some parents also volunteered for the test
• St Christine took the session with their fellow participants. They trained their fellows of standard six to standard eight on some topics they covered during TAK sessions
• We worked as a team making things smooth and easier.

• Getting to learn and accept each and every tots personalities was a challenge. Some could not deliver well and some could not share what they think hence leading to resignation of some of them
• Three of the recruited ToTs to take part in the implementation of the project resigned giving no better reason for resigning
• Language barrier as most of the participants could only speak and understand their mother tongue better.
• At times there were short sessions time because of remedial classes, co-curriculum activities and other school related activities
• Shyness from the participants hence some could not share their ideas or ask questions
• Diverse changes of weather, sometimes a lot of sunshine that made it difficult to set the tree nursery and the kitchen gardening
• We faced transfers of participants from one school to the other and some schools we couldn’t make a replacement. We also had few cases of drop out because of loss of interest.
• Some patrons had difficult times as they were the only teachers involved in the program. Some teachers could not see the importance of being part of the project.
• Setting the poultry project took time as most schools could not construct the poultry house and continuity of feeding was also a challenge
• Some schools did not show good cooperation spirit hence killing the morale of trainers and some participants
• Some schools were too far and with poor roads this makes it difficult to reach.
• Many more pupils were willing to join their fellow in the project. We were forced to recruit a twin sister whom we realized fought back at home because one was in and the other was out of the project
• Some pupils who are not in the project gave a name tag to the participants and this killed the morale of the participants and some wanted to drop
• There were many cases of missing items like; pens, note books, files and t-shirts

 We intend to increase the age target from 12years to 16 years and pick from standard four to six
 We are looking forward to set a project directly touching the parents
 There will be a link to keep the founder schools on going and sustainable
 We will try to consider the distance to the new schools.
 We intend to ensure that all teachers in the new schools agree and accept the project before signing an MoU
We had a meeting with the patrons and the ToTs on 10th July and we resolved that:
– Before setting the second year of the TAK projects schools should understand the project goal and what is expected of them
– The empowerment projects should be clear; that is, the support the project office will offer towards the projects especially poultry and when to leave the responsibility to the school
– Some schools experienced challenges on poultry like many cocks and less layers, death, we agreed to take into considerations extreme cases.
All the patrons were very happy and stressed that the project has brought a big difference in the life of these young leaders. There is improvement in behaviors and personalities. It has increased activeness even in their usual classes.
They are willing for more cooperation and promising more success compared to this ending year. I thank everyone who dedicated his or her time, energy, knowledge, resources and prayers for the success of this first TAK year. May the Lord bless you as we prepare to implement the second phase of this project…
Thankyou and God bless all.

Prepared by Martin Njoga

Field Officer

Karopa CBO

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