Tuesday, 18 December 2007
Marurui Jua Kali slum was founded during colonial rule back in 1931. Jua Kali, which is a segment of Marurui, was established as a boundary parting the two farms Thome and Marurui. This is where it stands to date. After colonial rule the employees in these two farms were asked to leave. Their settlement in the farms had been induced by the slave trade process; therefore they had no other option a part from settling in the secreted boundary area, establishing minimal structures and means of sustaining their lives.
The slum today is 100 feet wide and 3322 feet long. It contains 443 houses with a population of 3422 people, excluding children. 70% of the entire population consists of those below 30 years.
A large number of people in the Jua Kali area have only the basic education, that of primary and/or rarely secondary levels. This fact in itself has led to low levels of furthering or prioritizing education. Many parents in this area do not value education since many of them are primary drop outs. For the few who understand the importance of education, money is the hindrance. Lack of education has played a big role in many individuals participating in the production of illicit alcohol brews (‘chang’aa’ or ‘kumi kumi’), especially for woman. This is because many of them do not have any vocational skills and hence are forced to engage into illegal deals and businesses. The decisions made by these adults have a string of negative tertiary effects on the lives of young ones.
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Factors that cause low level of education
Ø Lack of school fees for many children to join secondary schools.
Ø Death of many parents due to HIV/AIDS pandemic.
Ø Early marriage practices are high in this community.
Ø Limited job opportunities.
Ø Lack of learning/scholastic materials.
Ø Unwanted/unplanned pregnancy among young girls.
Ø Congestion in public schools. After the establishment of the free primary education there has been an increase in children enrollment but limited space.
Ø Influence from bad company.
Ø Lack of enough food during school days hence forcing many children to drop out of school in search for food.
Ø Poor learning environment at home, for example lack of light, lack of a table to study, lack of help with homework from the children’s parents etc.
Many people in this community survive under poor strategic plans. About 75% of them survive on less than a dollar a day; this money is far spent on food, shelter, clothing etc. Due to low education in the community it is very hard for them to get a well paying job. This situation necessitates many to work as casual laborers in the following fields:
n Building and construction work
n Selling of illicit liquor
n Coffee picking
n Prostitution/commercial sex work etc.
Building and construction work:
Casual labor depends on its availability. Casual laborers may run for weeks or months without any job and when found, they are meagerly paid and that pay is on weekends. Once paid, these people will use a big fraction of the money to pay back the money rendered during when they did not have a job.
Selling of illicit liquor:
As a result of lack of employment, brewing of illicit liquor for sale and mostly by women is done to enable them get money to meet their daily needs. In regard to this, children suffer most because this business is operated indoors within the household. The kind of environment/atmosphere the child is predisposed to affects them psychologically, academically, health wise etc.
State of employment
n 15% depend on parents
n 40% are casual laborers
n 40% are unemployed
n 5% are permanently employed
By: Marurui United Youth Group (MUYOG)