Promoting Abstinence and Behaviour Change among the Youth through music

The Diocese of Kakamega on 3rd March 2012 held a colourful music festival to promote Abstinence and Behaviour Change among the Youth. The festival was organized by the Diocesan Education Office led by the Education Secretary Mr. Chalres Mbalilwa with the aim of picking the best three compositions which would be entered into the ABY National Anthem competition.

The Guest of Honour at the function was Rt. Rev. Philip Sulumeti, the Bishop of Kakamega. In his address, the Bishop emphasised the important role that the presence of parents played in the bringing up of children. The bishop called on the pupils to concentrate on their studies if they wished to have a bright future.  I urge you to work hard in and out of school,  said the bishop. Obey and respect your parents, your seniors and those in authority. Always desire to do good for a bright future.

The presentations were curtain raised by a parent‚  choir which performed two songs   one on peace and reconciliation and the other a call to parents to take greater responsibility in bringing up their children. The best three schools were St. Joseph Academy Primary School, St. Teresa  Isanjiro Primary School and Albertos Primary School respectively.

Each of the winning schools was presented with a trophy and ABY training materials. All participating schools were issued with certificates of participation and a token of appreciation from the Catholic Bishops in Kenya.

In total, 19 schools took part in the competition. In all the entries, the ABY key messages came out clearly. It was evident from the songs, that ABY was being implemented in all the participating schools. ABY stands for Abstinence and Behaviour Change for the Youth. The ABY project is implemented by the KEC-Commission for Education Religious Education. It targets primary school pupils in classes 5-8, the age at which they are most vulnerable to start indulging in early sex, drugs and substance abuse.

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