Our History

The CRADLE was founded primarily by a group of Christian Lawyers to respond to the need for provision of juvenile justice following a research and baseline survey in 1997 on the provision of justice to children in Kenya. The research showed the absence of institutional mechanisms to respond to this issue. The CRADLE was born to respond to this need.

The CRADLE was officially launched on 7th December 1998, on the eve of the celebrations of the 50th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, showing a deliberate choice of a rights -based approach in its work. The launch was held at the United States Information Service by Judge Arline Pacht, the then Chairperson of the International Women Judges Association. The launch was also presided over by Honourable Shem Ochuodho, then Member of Parliament, Rangwe Constituency. The CRADLE institutionalized in 1999 by setting up a pilot and the first legal aid clinic of its kind for children. The CRADLE was originally legally housed by the Women’s Resource Centre and physically by the Coalition on Violence Against Women. It was later registered as a trust and has since operated independently. The CRADLE continues protecting and promoting the rights of the child to date and the programs it runs have expanded significantly.


The vision of The CRADLE is a just society to the children


The CRADLE exists to protect and promote the rights of the child, especially that of the girl-child.


The objectives of The CRADLE are:

  • To enhance access to justice for children;
    To ground child rights in development and with communities;
    To enhance a child-friendly legislative and policy framework;
    To work towards the eradication of violence and exploitation of children;
    To contribute to the general development of human rights in the country;


The CRADLE’s approach is:

  • Child-centered.
    Focuses on a life-cycle approach that incorporates women rights.
    Human rights based.

The CRADLE’s Rallying Call…

‘Promoting Justice for Children, the Future in our Hands’

… that children are the cradle of society,
… that everyone has a significant role to play in society,
… that children’s rights have been consistently abused in the past,
… that the girl-child has been discriminated against in the past,
… that the discrimination of the girl-child consequently impacts on the status of women,
… that all are born free and equal,
… that neglecting children’s rights today is sowing seeds of discord that can only yield fruits of decadence tomorrow,
… that children’s voices have been unheard in the past.

Believing that children are:
… fountains of joy and knowledge,
… the cornerstone for the survival of the human race,
… reservoirs of intelligence,
… data banks of world leaders,
… our future,

Affirming our commitment to:
… eradicating abuses against children,
… championing children’s rights
… giving children a voice,
… improving the status of the girl-child and consequently the status of women

Hereby declare these as our core Values:

The best interest of the child
The child comes first and the child’s best interest is considered paramount in all that we do.

Equality and equity
We acknowledge that all persons are born equal and hence should be treated equally. The CRADLE however acknowledges historical injustices against certain categories and hence promotes equity to assist in attainment of equality.

To protect the right to equality, we recognize the importance of non-discrimination as a principle. The CRADLE promotes actions that do not discriminate against any category of children.

  • Child participation
    To enable children realize their full potential, The CRADLE recognizes the principle of meaningful child participation.
    We hold honesty, accountability and transparency paramount in our dealings.
    Respect for human rights
    Respect for the rights of others is core in our work.
    Commitment to The CRADLE’s cause
    We are committed to the cause of child protection both in public and in private.

The CRADLE is registered as Trust under the Laws of Kenya. The CRADLE has three principle organs

Board of Trustees
The organization vision inheres in the Board of Trustees which is composed of five (5) members.

Management Board
The Management Board oversees the management of the organization and ensures accountability mechanisms are in place. The Management Board is composed of seven (7) members.

The Secretariat
This is headed by the Executive Director and oversees the implementation of policies and programs of the organization.The Executive Director is the Secretary to the Board.