A Kenyan story about the needs of vulnerable children

Hunt, Kathryn (2010). A Kenyan story about the needs of vulnerable children. In: Alexander Carson and Karen D. Roscoe, Capturing the Patient’s Story. The 2nd International Narrative Practitioner Conference, Glyndŵr University, Wales, United Kingdom, (17-26). 21 June 2008.

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Author Hunt, Kathryn
Title of paper A Kenyan story about the needs of vulnerable children
Conference name The 2nd International Narrative Practitioner Conference
Conference location Glyndŵr University, Wales, United Kingdom
Conference dates 21 June 2008
Proceedings title Capturing the Patient’s Story
Journal name International Journal of Narrative Practice
Place of Publication Wales, United Kingdom
Publisher Glyndŵr University
Publication Year 2010
Year available 2010
Sub-type Fully published paper
Open Access Status Not Open Access
ISSN 2041-2207
Editor Alexander Carson
Karen D. Roscoe
Volume 2
Issue 1
Start page 17
End page 26
Total pages 10
Language eng
Abstract/Summary This paper offers findings that indicate the perceived benefit to 3 separate groups of twenty caring professionals of a brief training in Child-centred play therapy. All African course participants have adult counsellor qualifications and work with vulnerable children in East Africa. These include children in crises in children’s homes, residential schools, hospitals and street children. The courses were delivered and data collected in three separate cities: Nairobi; Kisumu; and Mombasa in Kenya, East Africa in July and August 2007. Qualitative research methods included: ethnographic material gathered in field diaries, pre and post –training questionnaires and semi-structured interviews with Kenyan co-tutors. Findings suggest that regardless of Kenyan/Ugandan tribal or geographical differences there appears to be a need for an accessible generic training for counsellors trained to work with adults to build on existing therapeutic understanding to adapt their knowledge and skills to be able to offer counselling support to children. Specific training in relation to tribal and geographical location was not considered to be necessary. Unexpected findings suggest high levels of sexual abuse, neglect and general lack of respect for the rights of the child in Kenyan society. Kenyan counsellors’ who were the course participants and tutors, spoke in their stories of child abuse of the need for a political and ideological shift in thinking to bring the Kenyan child to the centre stage of policy makers and those who are responsible for the welfare of Kenyan children. Until Kenyan society recognises its responsibility to meet the child protection and well- being needs of its most vulnerable members then counsellors will inevitably end up containing the avalanche of need and ‘patching’ children up to return them into a society that will continue to perpetuate and ignore the obvious neglect and abuse.
Keyword Africa
Play therapy
Safeguarding children
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

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Created: Sat, 04 Dec 2010, 01:58:40 EST by Dr Kathryn Hunt on behalf of School of Social Work and Human Services