Curtains closed on Mathare’s biggest annual festival, P Power over the weekend.

Feminists, SRHR advocates, climate change advocates, economic activists attended the event.

SGBV activists, artivists and grassroots movement organisers also attended.

The festival, which champions for different causes every year, saw dignitaries from the Dutch and Danish embassies attend.

This year’s theme, ‘Ni Sisi Tuko’ championed for different causes in all the three days it was held.

Day one of the event, which happened during the International Day of Human rights saw feminists explain their different causes, challenges, strategies and how to organise more effectively.

Coalition for Grassroots Human Rights Defenders Convener Rachael Mwikali expressed concern over the mushrooming of fake feminists in the country.

She also raised concerns against the rising and well resourced anti gender and choice movement in the country.

“We had our co-founder and national convener in South Africa attend and gave a key note. In her address she raised concern over the co-option of feminists movement in the country,” she said.
“We are happy that there are people joining the feminism movement, our concern is that, these people are not are not very genuine. They are in it for the wrong reasons,” she said.

“Our biggest concern is that they risk blocking genuine feminists from accessing funds to champion their causes.”

Mwikali also faulted the government for its attack on human rights movement and activists.

On the second day, the festival campaigned for the rights of persons living with HIV Aids.

Mwikali said it was about time government made ARVs accessible to everyone, even the young people.

“We are expressing concern over the availability of the ARVs. Young people are unable to access them because of stigma,” she said.

Reports indicate that young people aged 15-24 are leading in HIV infections in Kenya.

Mwikali urged the government to work with CHVs to educate the young people in the grassroots on matters HIV.

The third day of the event saw Mwikali and team champion for changing gender norms.

The campaign saw men catwalk in stiletto heels and wear make up in fashion show segment.

“We did this to get the men feel the challenges women feel. We wanted them to literally get into women’s shoes and feel their pressure,” Mwikali said.

People from all walks of life, different genders, activists, feminists and even religious leaders participated in the event.

Rachael Mwikali described it as successful with more than 1,000 people attending.

December 17, 2023

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