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.
AFK NETWORK PARTNERS
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 50 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, hold health 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. Their track record of 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.
As the newer networks evolve and mature (current total of 22), 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.
Shining Hope for Communities (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, the Marcus Garvey Community Library and the Johanna Justin-Jinich Women's clinic. They do incredible work and continue to& make inroads into the poverty and medical needs of Kibera.
You can learn even more about the expansion of their programs in Kibera by going to http://shininghopeforcommunities.org
and see the variety of program being developed and make a contribution to their efforts.
The Voluntary Counselors Kenya (VCK)
A 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 Sponsorship Program
is the program coordinator and can be reached via email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Jamii Outreach Ministries Sanctuary
Jamii is a shelter, haven and informal school for street children in the Kibera slum. Often Jamii is the only protection these pre-school-aged children have against homelessness, violence and hunger. The children come to the center daily where they receive clean clothes, food, a save place to play, some basic medical care and school-readiness activities. AFK has partnered with Jamii to improve their physical facility, provide electricity, send school supplies and set up a small library.
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 professional health care training focused on reproductive health and first aid. For more information, please visit their website: http://www.girlchildnetwork.org/home.html
Meru Blind and Associates
Meru Blind and Associates (MEBA) is a community organization of and for the blind, individuals with low-vision and people living with albinism. The organization initiates income-producing activities for its members, advocates for greater opportunities for all people with disabilities, and heightens awareness of the need for integrating people with disabilities into all spheres of society. MEBA has grown from a single chapter to numerous groups throughout the MERU region. One of their main initiatives supported by AFK is a resource center for people living with all forms of disabilities and their caregivers. http://www.merublindandassociates.org