The latest news from Friends of Kipkelion
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A strange new world

Only a month ago I was visiting Kipkelion to see how our projects were progressing – that visit now seems like another world entirely. At that time, Kenya was still free of the virus, however things have moved on rapidly since then. Now those in the Kipkelion region, alongside the rest of the world, are facing a real crisis and need your support more than ever.

Michael Deriaz
Chairman, Friends of Kipkelion

Handwashing Saves Lives

COVID-19 - soap needed!

There are currently several hundred cases in Kenya so far, and experts fear what would happen if the virus continues to take hold. With a population of over 53 million, Kenya has only 130 critical care beds and 30 ventilators in the whole country. In Kipkelion, where there are only three doctors to look after the 300,000 inhabitants, we are doing everything we can to stop the virus spreading.

Our partners Brighter Communities Worldwide are still there and are working hard every day, although their office is closed and the staff are having to work from home. With most normal project activities temporarily suspended, we are focussing on equipping hospitals and clinics in the Kipkelion area with basic protective clothing and ensuring that the general population has enough soap for proper hand washing.

To supply a family of 6 people with a month’s supply of soap costs only £3, and brings life-saving protection from COVID-19. We are prepped and ready to get supplies directly to where it is vitally needed right away, and your donation could be making a difference within days. 

We appreciate that these are unknown and frightening times, with uncertainties for many of our supporters - anything you can give during the crisis is appreciated by everyone involved with Friends of Kipkelion.  

Donate to our COVID-19 appeal here.

More news from Kipkelion

Maternal Health

Our Maternal Health project, partly funded by DFID, is fortunately able to continue during the crisis, although some activities have been suspended because of Kenya’s lockdown.

But there is still a lot we can do - in particular we are focussing on getting the message out to new mothers in Kipkelion about the need to keep their babies safe by washing with soap and observing social distancing.  The project is scheduled to run until September.

Community Health

We are about to start a new project, again supported by DFID, to improve community health in Kipkelion.  This will involve our partners Brighter Communities Worldwide training local volunteers in Kipkelion and the surrounding area, making health services such as immunisation available to people in the remoter locations.  We are thrilled to have just finalised modifications to this project with DFID, which will ensure that COVID-19 prevention is the first priority once this campaign begins.

Latrine building continues

One silver lining of the COVID-19 crisis - with all schools closed and requiring minimal labourers, the construction of latrine blocks is ramping up. We hope that several more latrine blocks will be completed in the next few weeks, so that when the schools re-open the pupils will be able to benefit from much better and healthier facilities.

And to finish on some good news...

A big shout out to Ele Bouchard and Joe Clark who got married in March and decided that, instead of asking for wedding presents, they would ask all their families and all their friends to donate to Friends of Kipkelion! They raised over £4,000, which is going to be used to equip an isolation ward at Londiani Hospital in Kipkelion East sub-county.  This will be used to isolate patients who are suspected of having COVID-19, while they are being tested for the virus.
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