Partnerships are about organizations finding ways to work together successfully, and avoid “re-inventing wheels”.
Building relationships and facilitating effective communication among working partners is one of our most important underlying goals. To that end we have developed networks with our partners in order to reach more schools, community centers, libraries and clinics. We maximize resources by bringing our groups together.
AFK is blessed to have among its partners wonderful charities located in the United States and in Kenya.
The Voluntary Counselors Kenya (VCK)
group of volunteer counselors performing HIV/AIDS counseling and awareness campaigns
through churches, schools, learning institutions etc. The purpose of VCK is to respond to challenges posed by HIV/AIDS related problems in a therapeutic way. This group of counselors is not a carbon copy of other community-based organizations but instead stands on its own and works tirelessly to help the citizens of Kenya through HIV/AIDS counseling, awareness services, campaigns, taking care of orphans and widows who have been affected by HIV/AIDS, creating income generating projects, and supporting women and youth in other myriad ways. We work in partnership with the VCK on our Orphan Support Program
is the program coordinator and can be reached via email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Both Your Hands
This organization led by Deborah Naybor
connects caring communities with impoverished villages who wish to be assisted to create self sufficient income and improve the lives of families. The programs work to create "enough": having enough to go through a day without hunger, to educate one's children, to afford medical care for good health, and to live without fear. At a grassroots level, Both Your Hands is working to create microloans, provide materials for income producing projects, and to support education and health.
Both Your Hands work in partnership with AFK and SHOFCO on the SWEP ( Women Empowerment Project) microfinance project. Through the efforts of Deb Naybor, there is now a day care center in Maasailand called "Debbie's Academy". The effort represents a collaboration between VCK's Jane Kahuthia and Deb. You can see a picture of the little ones in the section for VCK. AFK provided the uniforms for the little school and will continue to send school supplies and items for them.
In picture, Deb Naybor with Kennedy Odede (SHOFCO) in Kibera, June 2007
Shining Hope for Community (SHOFCO)
SHOFCO, a youth organization founded by Kennedy Odede, works with less fortunate youth in the slums of Kibera to empower them to overcome the pressing issues in Kibera: overwhelming poverty, unemployment, unclean environment, lack of good education, of sanitation, of electricity and security, of means of transportation, and the lack of clean water. The general goal of SHOFCO is to help Kiberan youth take leadership in their community, to take on entrepreneurial projects, and to become involved in setting agendas (political, economic, etc.) that keep the Kiberan interests at heart, thus restoring the community. Kennedy was able to get a scholarship to Wesleyan University in Middletown, CT and while there, he and his partner Jessica Posner obtained the grant funding necessary to set up the Kibera School for Girls and in partnership with AFK also are setting up the Johanna Justin-Jinich Women's clinic. They do incredible work and continue to make inroads into the poverty and medical needs of Kibera.
For more information please visit their website www.shofco.org
. You can learn even more about the expansion of the programs in Kibera by giong to http://shininghopeforcommunities.org
and see the varitety of program being developed and make a contribution to their efforts.
AFK NETWORK PARTNERSHIPS
AFK operates in partnership with a series of NETWORKS across Kenya. Each network consists of schools, and in some cases, libraries and community health centers. The largest networks include 40 schools and the smallest 4 or 5. All of them are headed by a volunteer network leader who communicates with AFK about the needs of the entire network and distributes books, medical and library supplies and other items in our shipments.
During our summer trips to Kenya we visit as many of the networks as possible and hold medical camps and training sessions, library development workshops, and professional development programs for teachers, schools administrators and parents. The network leaders follow up and schedule meetings of their own throughout the year. As resources permit, AFK organizes national or regional conferences for network leaders in different areas.
The system began in late 2008 with the formation of networks in Meru, Kikuyu, and Ruiru. These three original networks are blessed with devoted, passionate, and dynamic network leaders... Elias Gikundi in Meru, Eunice Wangari in Kikuyu, and Sister Mable in Ruiru. Their track record if success is amazing. Through their leadership and partnership with AFK, network schools have made demonstrable and steady progress in raising national exam scores, improving classroom performance, creating school and community libraries, and instituting professional development programs for teachers.
Also in late 2008, AFK formed a partnership with Dr. Mary Kinyanjui, Professor of Developmental Economics at the University of Nairobi. Dr. Kinyanjui designed a program to promote parental involvement in Kenyan village schools and has now piloted the program at 8 schools. AFK features her in many workshops and conferences for network schools and leaders.
Each summer, the AFK Library Team helps to set up librariles in different networks and trains community and school librarians. Similarly, the AFK Medical Team works in partnership with Kenyan nurses, doctors, and medical officers and imparts specialized knowledge in Reproductive and Public Health.
Networks with outstanding leaders have emerged in the following additional areas:
Nakuru - Vitalice Kahendah, Leader
Mumias - Julius Inganga, Leader
Saiya - John Ahaya Malamba, Leader
Miyusa - Vitalis Agutu, Leader
Nambale - Dr. Evalyn Wakhusama, Leader
Kisumu - Jane Omange, Leader
Alego - Benson Otieno, Leader
Kilia- Peter Kilonzo, Leader
Kajiado - Mercy Musomi, Leader
Western Province- Sister Mary Lihavi, Leader
As these networks evolve and mature, they will begin to make the impressive gains of the original three. Signs of that are already happening. AFK is proud to be an important part of that.
MERU DISTRICT PARTNERSHIPS
AFK is delighted to add to our partners the network in Meru. These include the Meru District Schools and Meru District Hospital. With the help and guidance of Elias Gikundi and Kaima Ruiga, we have been able to set up a library at Rurama Secondary School which also serves the community. In addition we continue to send books, library supplies, school supplies and clinic supplies as well as hospital equipment such as a cardiac defibrillator to the Meru District Hospital. The medical team continues to work with local medical professionals in rural clinics that provide, medications, instruction on Reproductive Health and reading glasses for the community members in need. We work with the local Association for Blind Adults and have been able to assist them in some of their needs inlcuding musical instruments.
Girl Child Network
Under the directorship of Mercy Musomi, and with the support of several Kenyan NGO's, the network does an incredible job of sheltering and protecting young women from FGM (Female Genital Mutilation) and early marriages by sending them to school and providing the assistance and support to avoid their alternative lives. AFK with it's medical team was in the area to do a clinic as well as training in use of AED device donated to the area clinic . Additional training focused on reproductive health and first aid.