The County Government of Kirinyaga has ensured there is a Gender-Based Violence (GBV) help desk in all public facilities to help victims heal and report related cases to authorities for investigation. Through trained County officers in the hospitals, GBV survivors are given free medical services. Though most referrals are from police stations, there are notable numbers of walk-ins to address GBV cases at the hospital desks. According to a report published by the State Department of Economic Planning on Gender Statistics, Covid-19 and Violence Against Women and Girls in Kenya, one in three Kenyan women has experienced an episode of sexual violence before attaining the age of 18 while between 39% and 47%of Kenyan women experience GBV in their lifetime. These cases escalated during the COVID-19 period when lockdowns and restrictions were imposed. Just like in other Counties, Kirinyaga County recorded an increase in GBV cases.
The County through a trained team of Community Health Volunteers (CHVs) is conducting sensitization forums to encourage both males and females to visit the GBV desks for counseling, medical attention and reporting to the police.
Kirinyaga County in partnership with Liverpool Volunteering and Counseling Centre (LVCT) is offering counseling services to all survivors visiting the designated desks. Both the hospital and police desks are manned by GBV champions, trained alongside the other County medical officers to deal with GBV cases. The County, through the Health Department, conducts a stakeholders forum quarterly to evaluate health issues including the management, operations, and different ways of reducing GBV cases.