The latest news from Friends of Kipkelion
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People in Kipkelion are still suffering badly from the pandemic. Although the number of reported cases is low, the statistics have very little value as there is hardly any way of testing for Covid in Kipkelion and figures for hospitalisations and deaths are not reliable.  There are reports of some people in Kipkelion dying of “pneumonia” which in reality is probably Covid.  Meanwhile, the economic disruption caused by the pandemic has forced millions of Kenyans into poverty – at least 700,000 people across the country have lost their jobs.  School closures have ruined children’s prospects and resulted in a huge rise in teenage pregnancy. Already a serious issue in Kenya before the pandemic started, there are also reports of a very sharp increase in domestic violence.  Overall, there are many frustrated, angry and desperate people and our support is needed more than ever.

Our partners Brighter Communities Worldwide are continuing to work across Kipkelion with their strong local team, having adapted the various projects to the current conditions.

Michael Deriaz
Chairman, Friends of Kipkelion

Getting vaccines from 'Tarmac to Arm'

Like every other country, Kenya needs a mass vaccination programme in order to get the pandemic under control.  Foreign governments are sending supplies of vaccines under the Covax programme, but it's still going to be challenging to get those vaccines distributed in remote areas such as Kipkelion. 

We have been working hard to ensure that the last few miles of the vaccines’ journey – from “tarmac to arm” – are made possible in the region. We’re helping to train local vaccinators, providing them with transport and PPE, buying “cool boxes” to carry the vaccines in, and setting up an information campaign to explain about the vaccine to people across Kipkelion. 

Please support this project if you can – transport and PPE to take one nurse from the local hospital  to a remote location in Kipkelion to give vaccinations costs about £35.

Marathon Women

The London Marathon is back this year and we have more runners than ever! Liz Geraghty, a teacher at Nonsuch High School for Girls, is running for Friends of Kipkelion in the main event on Sunday 3 October – you can support her here.

As a bonus this year there is also the Virtual London Marathon – taking place at the same time as the physical race, over the same distance, in thousands of locations around the world!  Friends of Kipkelion has three representatives taking part, including runner Linda Southwood and her fundraising supporters Paul and Sarah Deriaz. Show your support Linda in the Virtual Marathon here.

Both Liz and Linda are serious runners and we are very grateful to them for running the race for Friends of Kipkelion – do support one or other of them (or both!)

Mazars UK supports Menstrual Hygiene in Kipkelion

In June we were delighted to receive a grant of over £10,000 from Mazars UK towards our menstrual hygiene project in Kipkelion.  Mazars is a major UK accountancy firm with a large presence in the charity sector, and they have a long tradition of giving generously to good causes.  This is the third time they have supported Friends of Kipkelion. The grant will help hundreds of girls in Kipkelion to attend school regularly and catch up on the education they have missed during the pandemic.

The Foreign Office (virtually) visits Kipkelion

June also saw a “virtual visit” to Kipkelion by officials from the UK Foreign Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO).  The FCDO have funded several of our projects in Kipkelion over the last 6 years and they were keen to see how our current Community Health project is progressing and meet some of the beneficiaries.

The team from Brighter Communities Worldwide were able to connect them via Zoom with a remote hilltop in Kipkelion where nurses were inoculating babies as part of the project. The FCDO officials were both impressed and moved by the project, and not a little shocked by some of the descriptions of the hardship caused by the pandemic in Kipkelion.

And finally...

  • The Annual Report of Friends of Kipkelion for the period ending 31 May 2021 has now been filed with the Charity Commission. It provides an overview of everything we’ve been doing – with some nice pictures! Have a read here.
  • Charitable Travel are offering exclusive holiday discounts to Friends of Kipkelion supporters - including a half-term break in Turkey and a weekend of skiing in Austria. Find out more here.
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