COVID-19 in Kenya

The corona virus spreads worldwide, including Kenya. More than 2,000 people have been infected in the country (as of 2 June 2020, source: WHO). Strict measurements have been taken to slow down the spread.

Timothy Musa, a student at Pwany University in Kilifi and former exchange student in the ADDI project, who is still part in our Women Empowerment Project, describes the current situation to us:

“Since the reports about the first case of COVID-19 March 2020 in Kenya, there has been mass panic in different parts in the country. This has been ramparted due different cases reported globally and various deaths. The awareness about the pandemic keeps on increasing every day. Our minds are the most powerful tools humanity poses and through various cases the economy started to change. Kilifi women mainly depend on farming, selling of commodities in the market. Their activities have been altered following various regulations from the government. This has left many women with minimal daily business given their places have to be closed before 7 P.M. as stipulated in the Kenya Curfew. Since the outbreak Kilifi had recorded 6 cases of COVID-19; they have undergone all treatment and this has been a success for the county ta large. On 1 st May 2020, Kilifi County Governor announced there was zero cases of COVID-19 in Kilifi given all those admitted had recovered and there were no other infections. This has changed the face of Kilifi but it is required to adhere to all measure given by the government to minimize the risk. More testing is still underway to ensure the Pandemic is contained once reported.”

We are observing the developments and send all best wishes and health from Germany to Kenya.

Despite the current challenges, we are happy that the WEIKE women have been doing a lot of progress in their agriculture project. You can follow the project on our Facebook and Instragram page.

Visit to Kenya 2018

Between 1st and 1oth January we (Sissi, Reent und Simone) have been in Kilifi, Kenya to proceed with the current projects, first of all the agriculture project. In the following we sum up the progress made during the week of our visit.

Monday, 1st January 2018

First meeting with UDI members Ferdinand and Sifah

  • Exchanging information about the progress since May 2017 (last visit)
  • Initiated projects by the women in Mnarani:
    • Soap making: About 20 women from Mnarani have initiated their own project in which they make soap by themselves. On Friday we can watch a demonstration on how they make the soap.
    • Micro financing: The women meet on a weekly basis and each gives 20 KES to the cash administrated by 3 women of the group. After some time, they can get a soft loan out of the joint savings.
  • During our stay we would like to visit 2 fields for our agricultural project

Tuesday, 2nd January 2018

Visit of the 1st field in Mavueni

  • Result: not suitable
    • too far away from the women participating in the project
    • the ground is too sandy to cultivate

 

Wednesday, 3rd January 2018

Ministry of Land

  • Search (costs 500 KES) and receiving information for buying land as a non-kenyan association
  • Result: positive
    • Foreign associations can buy land through a lease of 99 years, which suitable for WEIKE
    • The lease can be extended.

Visit of the 2nd land, also in Mavueni

  • Resultat: good first impression
    • located next to the village where 2 women from the project live
    • other women can access the land by foot
    • the ground is suitable for cultivating regional vegetables and plants

Visit of the 3rd field

  • Result: not suitable

    • too far away from the women participating in the project

Thursday, 4th January 2018

Ministry of Land

  • Reent and Ferdinand make a search of the 2nd field
  • Result: positive
    • The only problem is that the owner didn’t pay any taxes since 1991. In case of the purchase, the possbility of sending the money directly to the tax authorities has to be considered. Having the debts paid we avoid that the government engrossed the field.

Friday, 5th January 2018

Demonstration of the soap making project in the kindergarden Mnarani

About 20 women from Mnarani have started a project in which they make their own soap for multiple purposes, e.g. for washing hands, clothes and dishes. >> To the project

They also produce bar soap made of natural ingredients (from the leaves of the Neem tree). This soap can be also used by WEIKE for representing the project in Germany.

During the meeting with the women this nice group photo was taken:

Saturday, 6th January 2018

2nd Visit of the promising field in Mavueni

  • Together with the officer of the agriculture ministry
  • Result: positive

    • The first good impression we had about the field was confirmed.
    • The officer explained that the field is suitbale for cultivating regional vegetables and plants and its a secure place for the women to work, especially because the village elder’s daugthers are participating in the project so he supports the initiative.
  • Before the cultivation a suitable fountain must be installed.
  • As soon as we clarified purchase, we will obtain offers for making the bore-hole.

Project idea: Door mats

The mother of Yusuf (an engaged volunteer in the empowerment project) makes door mats out of cloth waste she gets in tailoring shops for free. They only tools she needs are scissors and a needle with which she makes the colourful mats that she sells in her daughter’s tailering shop. She would be also interested in showing the women from the project in teaching them how to make the door mats. The technique is apparently easy to learn so that the women can start to make door mats independently after a couple of sessions.

Türvorleger Kenia

To sum up: A great project idea, that can be implemented with a minimum of start capital and know-how. Morever, they are made of material that would be thrown away otherwise.

In the conversation with the mother we had the idea of making bags with the same techniques, however this idea still have to be discussed.

Tuesday, 9th January 2018

  • Saying goodbye to Sifah, Ferdinand and Yusuf
  • We received samples of bar soap made by the women from Mnarani and 2 of the door mats from Yusuf’s mother

Conclusion

It was a very intensive, successful and exciting stay. Thanks to Sifah, Ferdinand and Yusuf we came a huge step further in our agricultural project. Furthermore, the projects initiated by UDI and the women show the high commitment and motivation on the Kenyan side. We are looking forward to the project development in 2018!

Sissi, Reent and Simone

On-site in Kenya 1st – 10th January 2018

During 1st – 10th January we (Sissi, Reent and me) were onsite in Kenya to proceed with our planned agriculture project. Besides visiting fields and planning further actions we had the chance to experience an exciting project which the women from Mnarani are already running successfully.

We will soon report about our exciting and intense stay in more detail!

Meeting the women in Mnarani 5th January 2018