Kilifi County is home to Christians, Muslims and adherents of African Traditional Religions, primarily from the Mijikenda communities. The Kaya elders are custodians of cultural practices, beliefs, traditions and knowledge linked to and practiced by the Mijikenda communities. Over recent years, intergenerational tensions and conflicts have emerged as many of the younger generation have embraced Christianity or Islam and come to reject the traditional knowledge, cultural values and beliefs of the Kaya elders. The Kaya elders face “suspicions that they hold ‘primitive superstitions’, take part in subversive political activities, or engage spiritual forces other than the monotheist God of Islam and Christianity” (Source: Meinema (2021)). Recent processes of urbanisation and internal displacement, combined with modern education, have widened the generational gap further. A lack of religious and cultural tolerance, mostly fuelled by misconceptions, combined with this generational gap, has led to tensions and hostilities and often finds expression in acts of violence against the elders.
This impact brief highlights the main outcomes and lessons learnt in Kenya from the project ‘Communities Richer in Diversity’, whose aim was to promote cultural diversity and respect for equal dignity of all people through interfaith and intercultural dialogue and cooperation. In Kenya the Kenya Muslim Youth Alliance (KMYA) carried out the project in Mombasa and Kilifi Counties. KMYA is a national civil society organisation headquartered in Nairobi, Kenya, with regional offices in Mombasa, Nakuru, Isiolo, and Kakamega counties, which aims to empower adolescents, youth and marginalised women with adequate knowledge, appropriate skills, and positive attitudes as key ingredients of personal and community development. This learning brief is based on data and analysis from independent baseline and endline studies, conducted in April 2019 and December 2019 respectively.
Please access it here: [pdf-embedder url=”http://localhost/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2022/05/CRID-Kenya_Final-.pdf” title=”CRID Kenya_Final”]