Women in Kenya are trying to end the practice of female traders having sex with local fishermen in order to secure a regular supply of fish.
Sex-for-fish, known locally as "jaboya", has been blamed for spreading
HIV/Aids in western Kenya's Lake Victoria region, but women's groups have
launched a campaign which aims to stamp it out.
A project launched by the Victoria Institute for Research and Environmental
Development International gives women their own boats, allowing them to repay
the cost of the craft through fishing. Dan Abuto, a field officer for the
institute, says the repayment money will be pooled, allowing more boats to be
built. "The project aims to address jaboya as a public health issue, lessen
poverty and gender inequality while being both sustainable fiscally and
environmentally," he said.
Widows are said to be particularly at risk from sex-for-fish, especially if
they have families to support. Women's groups say the 80,000 shilling (£560, $920) boats will not only end
the sex-for-fish practice, which they describe as "rampant", but will also
slow the transmission rates of HIV. One local official said that
"Jaboya is partly to blame for the HIV/AIDS prevalence. If this project
succeeds, the spread of the disease will come down".