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COUNTERING VIOLENT EXTREMISM THROUGH BUILDING STRONGER, MORE RESILIENT LOCAL COMMUNITIES IN THE COAST OF KENYA

Context and background of the project: Kenya has since 2013 lost almost 600 lives through terrorist attacks and hundreds from violent conflicts. Levels of radicalization and recruitment of youth to radical extremism has been rising particularly in the Mombasa and satellite counties. Existing conditions conducive to the threat of radicalization include a challenging mixture of land disputes, centre/periphery inequalities and resentment against ‘upcountry citizens’, religious tensions and a nascent separatist movement. Culpability for much of the violence rests on non-state forces such as MRC- and Al-Shabaab-affiliated groups, criminal gangs and political/tribal militias.

With financial support from the State Department of the United States of America, Kenya Community Support Centre (KECOSCE) is implementing this "Countering Violent Extremism through building stronger, more resilient local communities in the Coast of Kenya with the aim of enhancing youth, law enforcement relations and promoting tolerance to diversity amongst the youth communities in Mombasa, Kwale and Lamu counties.

These objectives will be pursued through engagement and empowerment activities including nine youth discussion forums reaching at least 900 at-risk youth and four police and community outreach events as well as communication and messaging activities to counter extremist ideology including a dedicated web site, a dedicated Facebook page and related campaign and at least four community radio broadcasts.