The Nanyuki Policare centre that is meant to address Sexual and Gender-based Violence (SGBV) under a one-stop-shop centre in the region has officially been launched.
The project which cost Ksh 9 million was jointly supported by the National Police Service (NPS), British Army Training Unit Kenya (BATUK) and the UK’s REINVENT programme.
Speaking during the commissioning ceremony in Nanyuki town on Friday, Rift Valley Regional Police Commander Tom Odero said Policare will handle SGBV endemic problems in a more holistic and expeditious manner.
“The model is there to complement and synergize the existing NPS Programmes. The synergy among the stakeholders will bring success in all the focus areas, “said Odero.
Officers asked to embrace Policare
He urged the NPS and other key players to embrace the Policare implementation aimed at addressing SGBV.
“SGBV is a multifaceted problem that requires the effort of various actors. We shall enlighten the community on the need to seek services here. I believe Policare will help,’’ Odero noted.
He further said, in Rift Valley, the major SGBV cases witnessed are defilement, Female Genital Mutilation, incest, rape, indecent acts and sodomy at the same time revealing male gender are the key perpetrators.
However, Odero said they have trained about 62 officers to handle such SGBV cases in the region targeting to end the vice and restore dignity to the victims.
Ms Judy Lamet, the Assistant Inspector General and Director Policare observed that most of the SGBV cases go unreported by the victims due to fear of how they are handled when they report such cases to the police.
“I am really pleased that we are at the cusp of launching and fully opening doors to the public to this integrated victim-centred station for SGBV. We are ready to handle such cases as we anticipate full operations with all stakeholders on board,”.
The policare apart from having a police care desk is also equipped with counsellors, judiciary, and medical professionals to help SGBV victims overcome the trauma.
“Policare is a very timely project and I am hopeful that it will build the trust between the police and the public. We want to ensure perpetrators of SGBV are dealt with, victims protected and justice delivered,” said Ms Lamet.
Brigadier Ronnie Westerman, United Kingdom government representative said that they are committed to working with Kenya in eradicating violence against women.
“The UK is proud of its groundbreaking work to help in fighting violence against women by pioneering new approaches in Kenya. Working with partners to end this crime continues to be a top priority,” she said.