The perceived challenges undermining the transition of preadolescent boy- child into adulthood in Juja Sub- County, Kiambu, Kenya: An Action Focused Survey

Stephen Kiriungi Kamore


The parents, faith based organizations, government departments, researchers, media and communities in Kenya are concerned about the status of the boy child as reflected in the declining performance in national exams, school dropout, engagement in drugs and substance abuse, crimes, unlawful gangs and child labour. This study was conducted with the objective of establishing the root causes of the perceived challenges facing the preadolescent boy child. The study used descriptive research design. Data was collected using in-depth interview. The study targeted 300 boys aged 6-14 years. Purposive sampling was applied and collected data analysed qualitatively in prose to ensure the accuracy of the participants’ information. The study revealed that the boy- child has challenges in the family, school and community. In schools the boy-child challenges include; weak school bonding, neglect by teachers and school administrators, declining academic performance, harsh disciplinary measures compared to the girl child, teachers negative attitude toward the boy-child. In the community; negative attitude toward the boy- child, retrogressive cultural values, harsh disciplinary measures compared to the girl- child, failure for leaders to implement the children law and policies in defence of the boy-child. The study revealed that there is no gap in legislations and policies concerning the boy-child welfare but limited enforcement of law and policies in protecting the boy-child. Study recommend initiation of affirmative actions to create awareness of the emerging challenges of the boy-child in our modern society, early intervention programs to address boy-child challenges from the preadolescent stage of development, empowerment fathers on effective mentorship of the boy-child, strengthening the family unit at the immediate environment that nurtures the boy- child and collaboration with media, faith based organizations, education institutions, national and county governments in enhancing the well being of the boy-child. Further studies can be conducted on challenges of the boy- child during early, mid and late adolescence, the perception of community about the Boy- Child as gender and role of faith based organization in the mentorship of the Boy- child.

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