Deborah Monari

Deborah Monari: PHOTO[COURTESY]

The Nairobi City County Finance Bill 2023 sparked significant concern and outrage among citizens, particularly those advocating for women’s and youth welfare. At the forefront of this advocacy is Deborah Monari, a nurse and Nguvu Change Leader, who has firsthand experience with the severe impacts of medical negligence and the crucial importance of accessible healthcare services.

What Inspired Deborah Monari to Start Her Petition?

Deborah Monari’s journey towards advocacy was fueled by a deep-seated commitment to protecting the health and future of women and teenagers from low-income households. Shocked by the national data from Kenya Health Information Systems, which reported 110,821 teenage pregnancies in the first five months of this year alone, Deborah saw the dire need to act. In Nairobi, 11,000 of these cases were reported, underscoring the urgent need for accessible reproductive health service.

The Impacts of the Nairobi City County Finance Bill 2023

The bill threatened to make contraceptives and family planning services unaffordable for many. If passed, services such as implant insertion and removal, IUCD insertion, and Depo-Provera injections will become chargeable, with costs ranging from KSh.150 to KSh.500. Post-abortion care will cost KSh.3000, further placing essential healthcare services out of reach for vulnerable women and teenagers.

Community and Stakeholder Response

Since initiating the petition, Deborah has witnessed a groundswell of support from the community and various stakeholders. Citizens, driven by a shared concern for the future of their families and communities, have rallied behind her call to action, emphasizing the critical need to protect accessible reproductive health services.

Personal Stories and Experiences

Deborah’s advocacy is also deeply personal. She has encountered numerous cases where young women’s futures were compromised due to a lack of access to contraceptives and family planning services. These stories highlight the broader societal implications if the bill were to pass, leading to a rise in unplanned pregnancies and jeopardizing the health, education, and future of many young women.

The Influence of a Nguvu Change Leader

As a Nguvu Change Leader, Deborah’s approach to advocacy is informed by her commitment to youth welfare and her experience in the healthcare sector. Her leadership has been instrumental in mobilizing support and raising awareness about the critical issue of accessible reproductive health services.

Effective Advocacy Strategies

Deborah has utilized various strategies to mobilize support for her petition, including leveraging social media, engaging community leaders, and fostering partnerships with like-minded organizations. Her call to action has resonated widely, demonstrating the power of collective citizen action in driving change.

A Message to Decision-Makers

Deborah’s message to decision-makers, including Hon. Sakaja Johnson and Hon. Kennedy Okeyo Ng’ondi, is clear: prioritize the health and future of women and teenagers by ensuring that family planning services remain free and accessible. The power to make a difference lies in their hands, and the community is urging them to act with compassion and responsibility.