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The Impact of Nubian Gin (Chang’aa), on Unemployed Christian Youth, in Matayos Sub County, Busia County, Kenya

Abstract: The impact of chang’aa abuse on unemployed Christian youth in Matayos Sub County,Busia County is far reaching, leading to domestic violence, divorce, loss of lives, unemployment, family instability and rampant crime. The escalating effects have led to an outcry by the inhabitants’ of Matayos Sub County. The youth who use chang’aa, frequently experience chang’aa related disorders that could be distancing them from their parents and society. The target population from which the researcher derived the results was 102 people, 77 youth were administered questionnaires, 15youth took part in focus group discussion, 10 leaders who included Busia County Director of Alcohol, Matayos Sub County Commissioner, two church leaders, Chief, three Sub Chiefs, Police Officer and Matayos Sub County youth officer were administered interview guides. Stratified sampling was used to sample various youth groups. Quantitative data obtained through questionnaires and qualitative data obtained through interview guides and focus group discussions were analysed in narrative form and presented in form of charts and frequency tables. The results of the study were as follows: The study revealed that there are several factors that lure unemployed Christian youth to Chang’aa abuse. These include socialization, leisure, peer pressure, depression among other factors. The study further noted that socializing is the most frequent reason as to why unemployed Christian youth consume Chang’aa. One key informant stated that the majority of the youth view chang’aa consumption as being “cool” and an essential part of their daily socializing. In fact, youth who don’t indulge in Chang’aa consumption are considered as cowards and out-dated. However, Chang’aa abuse has its own adverse impact among the unemployed Christian youth who abuse Chang’aa. The impacts are: domestic violence, divorce, early pregnancies, deaths, diseases, prostitution and school drop-outs. The youth were found dead in ditches, rivers and runoff after drinking too much. They were also found to be drinking in excess before they can eat food hence interfering with the body functioning and thereby killing them directly. In addition, those abusing chang’aa were found to be involved in prostitution and this in turn led to death because of the sexually transmitted infections. Finally, the government, the church and the society has put up measures to curb Chang’aa abuse in the area. As much as the government plays a major role in curbing Chang’aa abuse in the area, the role of the church could not be undermined. Church leaders have taken an active role to deal with the Chang’aa menace. The study recommended that further measures be put in place by all facets of the society to curb Chang’aa abuse in Matayos Sub County. Key Words: Nubian gin, Christian youth, Chang’aa, unemployment

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