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Kibera is a devastating threat. Families we have been educating and supporting can no longer find protection behind the walls of our centre and are now desperately struggling to survive under the pressure of COVID-19. Living conditions worsen every day. The stories we are hearing are increasingly tragic and multiplying. Formally hard working families are now starving. Parents are being forced to leave their children at home alone during the day to seek any work possible just to be able to put one meal a day on the table. Left alone, these children are vulnerable and prayed upon. Too many are abused, suffering weight loss and losing hope. Living has, in all ways, become desperate.

The centre has made the decision to re open its doors to the most vulnerable. This is a very difficult decision as many are waiting at the centre everyday for food. They cannot accept everyone so they are choosing the most in need, making sure they receive lifesaving food and care.  

Please take the time to read the updates below. At present, more than ever before, your generous donations are making a huge, life-saving difference enabling the WKW Centre to assist many desperate families. 
An Update from Ben Mbasa. 

C-19 Education and Awareness Sessions
"It is cold in Nairobi and the covid-19 has finally caught up with Kibera residents. As a staff, we are being extra vigilant and keeping safe as we continue interacting with families’ from Kibera on a daily basis at the centre. One major task which has emerged here at the centre and is well executed by the staff is the constant sensitization, awareness and education sessions for children and other families from Kibera who visit the center for any business on Corona virus."
"They do come to the centre to pick money, pick food packs, to talk and share with somebody, they report cases while few children come to eat, study and play. They are hungry most of the time and while at home there is not much food but they know quite well that there will be some food at the centre to eat, books to read and a playground. And so very early in the mornings, each day, with rain or no rains, they brave the cold of the morning, they cross the Kibera river and oops! They are standing at the WkW gate waiting for the staff to come and open the centre.
Telling a small hungry and a cold child to go back home to the slums due to C-19 is the most painful experience I have recently come across. They simply cannot understand the reality of C-19 and why they need to stay at home while the centre is there for them. Recently, we decided to allow only a few vulnerable children to come and spend their day at the centre. While at the centre, they are helped to adhere to safety measures at any given time. They are also monitored and helped with studies while at the centre. They are young, vulnerable and very few."
"It all begins in the morning with Wesley. The hard working WkW Kenya security guard who ensures that everyone who enters through the gate has got a mask on. If they don’t have any mask, the office is informed and a mask is issued immediately. Wesley then guides the visiting individual to the hand washing sink. To wash the hands and to sanitize. We are more than happy and grateful for the gift of the hand washing sink and soap dispenser which was donated and was recently constructed at the entrance of the WkW centre."
Food distribution
"The families from Kibera come to the centre to pick food. Every day, there must be an urgent and distress call from a family seeking for food. On a weekly basis, Sr. Leonida buys food and keeps in the store for any emergency. Recently, on the 9th of June, another food packs were purchased for distribution to Kibera families for the month of June. We are very grateful to every person who has been supporting the Kibera families with food and other essential items. This initiative is a lifesaving one and we wish it to prosper."
Landowners and the tenants’ relationships in the slums of Kibera
"Tension has been brewing between the landlords and the tenants for quite some time now since the C-19 began. Because the economy has shrunk and lots of jobs lost, many people especially from the informal settlements such as Kibera who have got no income have been facing threats, harassments and intimidations from the landlords. Some have been thrown out of their homes, others have negotiated with their landlords while others are facing evictions. So far, through the intervention of WkW Kenya together with Women for Women in Africa Foundations two families have been saved from evictions while other vulnerable families are continuously being supported with house rent. Families currently are finding it very challenging to pay for house rents and other utilities."
Keeping children busy
"The government has announced that schools may resume in September 2020. This is good news but the parents have to live with the children for all the remaining time till schools open. Nobody is even sure that the school will be opened in September as the government thinks. Meanwhile schools, parents and other organizations are coming up with different strategies to help children study while at home more so the candidates.
WkW as an organization has put up a great effort in helping the children to study at home. Some schools send study materials online. As an organization, we help those children to access such materials via WhatsApp and email. We print and issue the materials to the children. Sometimes the staff goes online to search for the right materials and print them for children for studies. We also issue books and other reading materials for the children and organize zoom classes for them.
So, every day, the office is full of printing and online search related activities with students coming to pick their assignments in an alternating manner. With such activities, our sponsored children are kept busy and are properly engaged in studies while at home. However, we also have several reports of children who are unable to study at home even with learning materials because the home environment is not conducive for studies. It is also proper to note that toners/ printing ink have gone scarce in Nairobi in the last few weeks and the few that are available are very costly. Many people are printing all over Kenya and the demand for toners have skyrocketed."
Covid-19 and the girl child in Kibera
"In January 2020, the Education Cabinet Secretary in Kenya set foot in the slums to rescue some girls who had failed to join high school. They were three. He took them personally and escorted them to the schools then sponsored their education. This kind and proactive action from the government was celebrated throughout Kenya. However, when the C-19 came in, all the schools closed and all children were sent back home. Recently on the national television during a presser, the Education Cabinet Secretary announced publicly that all the three girls he had rescued from the slums and took to school in January are now pregnant. He sounded disappointed and helpless. He blamed the society and in particular parents of the and told parents that they had no business creating children if they do not have time for them. The Cabinet Secretary may not however been made aware that this was just but a tip of an iceberg. Girls in the slums are suffering and particularly in the hands of abusive and caregivers. It may also be noted that children are always abandoned or neglected due to economic reasons for that matter. That the parent/s are so much busy looking for income that the children spend alone by themselves the whole day without any adult.
The Cabinet Secretary may not know the pain of a widower and a loving father such as John (Name Changed) who is employed as a day guard and works the whole day without spending any time with his teenage daughters. However, much John would like to spend quality time with the children, he is unable because work is waiting for him. Of course he does not know the pains of someone like Jane (Name changed), who is a single parent and has got to go to work the whole day and leaves her 14-year-old girl to take care of the younger siblings the whole day because if she does not go out to look for job, the four children will sleep hungry.
Welcome to the reality of girl-child in the slums of Kibera during the C-19 period. The pandemic is slowly and systematically disturbing and threatening the already weak and vulnerable supporting structures of girl child in the slums such as family unit. Families now are scared and are busy looking for food and house rent leaving some of the girls alone and isolated for the whole day. The girls find themselves vulnerable, and are often used or abused. They are much better and safer in schools.
The centre remains a very strong source of support and a place of good will for helping the children. A source of hope and strength to many Kibera families including the girl child."

A update from Daniel, who is responsible for Post Secondary Students

The scourges of covid-19

 "Upon confirmation of the first case of corona virus in our country in mid-March, everyone went into panic mode. The government ordered closure of all learning institutions; teachers sent all students packing with no assurance of when to resume normalcy. It has been over three months in darkness not knowing what to do or where to run to. This scary pandemic caught every institution and everyone unaware and since its entry into our lives, everyone’s focus has turned to doing everything possible to remain safe and healthy.
In the recent past, alarming and raising numbers of covid-19 positive cases have been on the rise in Kibera. It’s now regarded as a hot-spot for the spread of the virus. We must remember that this is the community that whose families we serve. The risk and threat of being infected and infecting others is very high as opposed to the level of preparedness and measures put in place to combat the spread of the virus, especially in the slums which is faced with the problem of overpopulation.

Despite the severe challenges posed by covid-19, institutions like Strathmore University, The Catholic University of Eastern Africa and Marist International University College, and United States International University-Africa have organized online learning platform through zoom. Our students in these four institutions have been able to attend their lessons though with challenges of lack of gadgets like laptops and access to internet. They have to rely of classmates who often come to their aid.

Majority of our students in public universities have no access to learning because these universities have no resources to set up online learning. They have to remain at home until the time it’s declared safe to resume learning. Without withstanding the frustrations of missing their lessons, these students, for example, Allan Shikanda Kibira, who is in the village, can’t travel back to Nyeri, to attend his lessons, with consultation with his college and the office, he has taken a one semester academic leave until God knows when normalcy will resume. This will ultimately affect their completion and graduation dates.

However, the effects of the spread of corona have not only been felt in the learning institutions, but also at home and work places. Everyone has been ordered to remain at home and keep social distance. Our students come from the slums of Kibera where access to clean water and food remains a dream that’s yet to be realized by everyone.

Most of our families have had difficulties in raising money to pay rent and buy food, but thanks to well-wishers who’ve given us food donations that have relieved them. The families of Marion Nerima Oduory and Winfridah Nyanchama Onduso have been threatened to be thrown out of their houses by their landlords for failure to pay rent.

Brian Otieno Ouma once told us that he sometimes goes to sleep having ate nothing. His single mother travelled to upcountry before the government ordered cessation of inter-county movements. She can’t travel back to Kibera until the government declares it safe to open its inter-county boundaries to allow its citizens to travel. Brian with his four siblings have to rely on the little food and money he receives from the Centre. He’s also faced with challenges of raising money to pay rent and electricity and buy water.

These are some of the examples of cases that have openly let us knows what’s happening in their lives but we know there are many who’ve decided not to make us aware of what all they’re going through. Our constant follow ups have made us aware of these happenings and we with the little resources and donations from well-wishers, we’ve tried to reach to all our 250 families that we serve. Thanks to all our sponsors and God sent well-wishers who have made it possible for us to support them."


While Australian's are enjoying a softening of restrictions, families in Kibera are not so fortunate.

The people of Kibera and the WkW centre will feel the effects of COVID- 19 for many, many months to come.

As we near the end of the financial year, we are hoping some of you are in a position to make a donation that may literally save lives.

Please consider donating to the Women and Children of Kibera. 

All donations are tax deductible.

Regular monthly donations can also be set up through the website or clicking the link below.

We are keeping the Disaster relief fund open during this desperate time. Donations can be made simply by clicking on the link below.

All who work at the WkW centre, the committee in Melbourne and the families of Kibera are so very grateful for your continued support. 
Donate here for the Disaster Fund
Click here to set up Monthly Donations

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