This County Ministry is tasked with the management of Early Childhood Education and Vocational Training in the county and with working towards an all-inclusive society devoid of any form of discrimination based on one’s gender, religion, race or ethnicity.
Skills development is significant in building a strong knowledge economy as the engine to spur economic growth. WE have therefore embarked on building the capacity of our Youth Vocational Training Centres (VTCs) to have enough capacity to produce a critical mass of technical skills to develop entrepreneurs to drive the private sector. With support from German and Korean partners, Baringo Government will equip VTCs and train instructors on modern technologies.
Additionally, the department will profile the county skills inventory for each sector and steer the upgrading of our vocational training institutions towards provision of skills that match those required to bridge the gaps in the job market.
The department is pleased with the recent timely disbursement of Shs 30 million in county bursaries. We have however noted that this amount is grossly insufficient and there is need to increase the kitty to be able to target bright and talented youth for scholarships to pursue skill sets that will either guarantee them employment or enable them venture into entrepreneurship. This is one of the ways that we shall employ to address the unprecedented youth unemployment in the County.
We will upgrade our current ECD classrooms to ECD centers by equipping them and providing additional facilities to cater for all aspects of early childhood development. Education Department will works towards improving the welfare of ECD teachers.
We are very keen on enabling our youth to leverage on ICT in skills as a driver for enterprise development. In this regard, we intend to work with partners to roll out free Wi-Fi in all our urban centers, starting with Kabarnet and Eldama Ravine. This is fundamental if we are to enable our people to take up offshore business and employment opportunities and keep up with the contemporary world.
The County government of Baringo is committed to the development of sports infrastructure and is improving them further in the coming financial year. The department will further invest in completing construction of Kabarnet Stadium, upgrading Eldama Ravine Stadium as well as the development of three athletics camps at Sirwa, Otany and Ossen. This, among other intervention like supporting our sporting teams and persons will go a long way in enhancing the development of young people on matters sports.
Furthermore, the department will keep making strides towards ensuring that more of our old citizens and persons with disabilities (PWD’s) are given support. So far, the County government through the Baringo persons with disabilities and elderly grant programe gives a monthly stipend of Shs 2000 to 210 beneficiaries drawn across the County besides NHIF cover of Shs 500 every month.
The department has also spearheaded the campaign against gender based violence like early marriages and female genital mutilation perpetuated against individuals. These social vices have negated the gains made towards achieving social transformation within our society and the department is committed to ensuring the perpetrators are brought to book to deter and reduce the prevelance such acts in future.
Baringo is one of the few Counties endowed with rich culture and traditions that are unique. The County with a population of more than 600,000 people hosts all Kenyan communities including the Tugen, Pokot, Ilchamus, Endorois, Agikuyu, Turkana and Nubians making it a county of great diversity both socially and culturally.
Every year the County government conducts a cultural and talent search festivals from the sub counties drawing different cultural groups and popular artists to display their rich culture through songs, poems and traditional attire.
The cultural groups consisting of both young and the elderly take their time to compose and perfect their presentations originated from either seasons, peculiar community incidences, renowned personalities and icons, environment, cultural practices, norms and beliefs, among many more.
Most of the communities particularly Pokot, Ilchamus and Endorois still guard their culture jealously in order to preserve them. These groups have continued to raise the county’s flag high while representing it in various national events like the annual Kenya Music and Cultural festivals held at County, Regional and national levels.
Four cultural groups, Loropil traditional dancers, Culture Promoters, Seur Nalepo traditional dancers and Kazi Bora cultural dancers which have been supported by the county Government are current national champions in their categories of folk songs and dances. These groups emerged top during last year’s Kenya Music and cultural festivals held in Kakamega County.
Baringo County is putting up spirited fight against retrogressive cultural practices especially early forced marriages, female genital mutilation (FGM) and cattle rustling and banditry activities. These efforts have seen the trend slowly reverse due to continuous interaction between communities during county and national events particularly holidays where communities embrace each other. Inspiration scenes of perceived rival communities singing and dancing to each others’ songs particularly among the Ilchamus and Pokot traditional groups have been witnessed.
These presentations aims at delivering moral lessons and messages on communities’ way of living, child naming ceremonies, greetings based on age, blood relationships and age sets, rain making, rites of passage and artifacts and regalia used by the community. The Department is cognizant of the fact that it is through appreciating different cultures that the diverse Kenyan communities can co-exist peacefully. We shall also ensure enough budgetary allocation to the noble course of empowering artists and cultural groups because for a long time they have been ignored yet they play a a big role in promoting cohesion