There are many cases that go unreported. Cases of young girls and boys going through abuse under the care of people who are supposed to protect and take care of them. Most of these kids are orphans or come from very poor background where the biological parents are not able to provide the basic needs for them, hence are forced to seek refuge at relatives or neighbours.
Research has also shown that some of these abuse cases are carried out by one biological parent when the other parent passes on and kids are left under the care of the surviving parent. In most cases, the surviving parent has an alcohol or drug addiction.
All or majority of such cases go unreported because of fear of stigmatization, shame and general fear instilled in these young children’s mind by society or their abusers. The fact that there are no concrete laws at community level, that clearly state how to ”punish” abusers or deal with such cases, cases like these don’t get resolved quick enough. In some situations, perpetrators get away with abuse and carry on for years abusing these kids. The ”shame” is also a major contributing factor for such cases going unreported.
In cases where these cases are reported, and perpetrators put behind bars, there is no treatment (counseling) given to the children or/and their families. This means that the children carry these wounds and scars with them for the rest of their lives. While BIF will not be in a position to erase the history or the scars, it is our hope that by offering treatment in form of counseling, we will be helping with the healing process for these children.
After years of directly handling cases on abuse in Taita, it was obvious to Beata Mghendi (The Program Director & Chairlady for Beyond Innocence Foundation-Kenya), that something had to be done to help these children. Beata shared this with Martha Mghendi (Founder & Chair to the Board for Beyond Innocence Foundation- Netherlands), who was at that time planning to build a Children Orphanage in Taita. The situation of alarming rise of cases of abuse and what the home would be able to provide for the children, made Martha change the plans from building an orphanage to building a Safe House/ Rescue Center instead, and Beyond Innocence Foundation was born.
BIF is registered with Chamber of Commerce (KvK) in The Netherlands as a Stichting (NGO) and registered with the Taita Taveta County as a Community Based Organisation (CBO). Involving the community is the most important aspect of operations for BIF, as this means that the community is directly involved in decision making and running of the project on the ground. All Board Members work on Voluntary Basis meaning that no salaries are paid to them. This ensures that the funds raised go directly into the project instead of covering administration costs.