We saw that many children and their parents were choosing the wrong path.

— Joshua Omerikit, Counselor of Tiira Parish

Counselor Joshua Omerikit

Moses Ojambo is doing focused work on his laptop, next to him sits Kennedy John Wmima, telephoning with one of the local villagers. For the past four years they have been working together for the good of the children in and around the village or Tiira. The biggest problem: Many children here are sent to work in the goldmines by their often destitute parents. Many children also decide themselves to head out and earn money instead of attending school. This in turn generates many new problems. To stop this from happening, significant legal changes are needed – a law that would prohibit school-age children from working in the goldmines in the first place. Moses Ojambo says: “The decisive factor in the beginning was to win over politicians as partners for this cause.” Of course, NGOs can’t themselves go and write new laws.

Luckily, the politicians were eager to listen and take action. Joshua Omerikit, whose office is not far from CaRNaC’s office in Tiira, is one of these politicians. “Things had been developing in the wrong direction,” they had already recognized this. And they were thankful that CaRNaC was fighting for the rights of children in the region, an endeavor that was very much needed here. “We wanted to support the work of CaRNaC,” says the politician. To do this, they enacted a so-called by-law which prohibits school-age children from working in the goldmines. If the law is violated, the child is then brought to the local police station, the parents are informed, and all parties are required to sit down and have a talk. Counselor Omerikit is convinced that success will only be possible if everyone works together here.