" /> News – Kanzi-Kibera Friends

The Dada Mtaani Program sought to establish a safe and open space for girls to discuss menstrual health challenges without fear of judgment. As a location, Kanzi Resource Centre provided an accessible and safe space to encourage girls attending the program, to talk about their lived experiences with confidence.

To maximize participation, the organizing team visited neighbouring houses in Kibera, inviting all teenage girls to attend. Formal invitations were extended to girls from local schools supported by our organization, including Cana Junior, Fruitful, and Gifted Hands. A total of 40 girls attended the Dada Mtaani Program, aged between 13 and 18 years old.The event started by welcoming the girls, then facilitated open discussions before lunch was served. After lunch, sanitary products were distributed before the meeting closed with prayer and thanksgiving.

The success of the Dada Mtaani Program was made possible through the generous support of Kanzi Kenya and Pastor Sammy Njiru, a supporter of our work in Kibera. Girls attending talked of the difficulty in obtaining effective sanitary products which limited their attendance at school and confidence to participate in activities outside the home during menstruation. The Dada Mtaani Program marks a pivotal moment in addressing menstrual health challenges and empowering girls in the community. Kanzi organisation both in Kenya and in the UK are keen to explore projects to provide sustainable menstrual support for girls attending the schools we work with.

If you would like to support this work, please use the donate button and/or contact us to let us know how you would like to help.

Significant progress has recently been made with the project to rebuild Cana Junior School. Kanzi Kibera Friends have been very involved in raising funds for this project and having on-site involvement in procuring tradespeople and materials. Thanks to all our very generous Friends and supporters, we recently sent a further £5,000 to progress the upper floor and make the building watertight to prevent weather-damage.

Our aim was to have the building work completed before Christmas, whilst recognising there would still be further work needed. The local tradespeople worked tirelessly and managed to complete the walls, ring beam, trusses, roof, fascia board, and guttering by Christmas. Some workers were so committed that they even applied finishing touches on Christmas Day itself.

Once this work was completed however, it still required metal bars on the front windows and railing on the stairs and balcony to ensure the safety of the children. Unfortunately, the funds we sent were insufficient to cover this additional expense. Always rising to a challenge, Martha, the school’s director, continued her fundraising and managed to obtain the necessary funds for the required metal work. This ensured the children’s safety while using the stairs and walking along the first-floor corridor and balcony. They are now able to use the building, although there are still finishing touches needed.

The barricading iron sheets in front of the school will be removed once the ditch in front of the school is secured. Cement slabs will be needed to cover the ditch to make the front entrance safe for the children and staff to use.

The next steps will include plastering, smoothing, painting, and installing doors for all the classrooms. Additionally, there will be the installation of protective shutters on the back windows. The electrical work will come later as part of the finishing touches. The school, as well as Kanzi Kibera Friends, will continue fundraising to see this project through to completion. If you feel inspired to donate to this project, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with us or donate via this website. Let’s make Cana a wonderful place for the children to learn in.

Martha, together with all the children and staff, wish to send their thanks to all our Friends and Supporters for all their generous help to rebuild Cana Junior School.

David, a long-time Friend of Kanzi, recently introduced us to a company called ‘Southernsbroadstock’, who have now donated 13 laptops to Kanzi Kibera Friends. This is a very welcome addition to the IT facilities in the Resource Centre.

David also introduced us to another contact called Shanti. He and his friends have a deep connection with Kenya as they grew up there and are all actively involved in the IT industry. They have formed The Thika Alumni Trust (TTAT), which collects donated laptops and computers for distribution to under resourced schools in Kenya, particularly in the rural areas. Their mission is to establish computer labs in these schools, which otherwise would not have access to such technology.

Shanti and his team programme the donated laptops to enable access to the innovative concept known as the ‘Internet in a Box’ (IIAB). This provides children with access to a comprehensive collection of resources through a local server, eliminating the need for them to navigate the World Wide Web. IIAB can continually be enhanced with additional programs, particularly those focused on education. Shanti and his team aspire to further enhance this initiative by incorporating the entire Kenyan educational curriculum into the IIAB. This will prove to be an incredible asset for the resource centre, which aims to support children in Kibera to narrow the educational gap between themselves and their peers growing up in more privileged circumstances.

After a long journey via ship, the computers have finally arrived in the Kanzi Resource Centre. The shipping costs were surprisingly low, coming in at less than £200, as they were included in the TTAT shipment to Kenya. We are very grateful to Shanti and to David for donating the money to cover these costs.

A small group of children, from the schools we support, gathered to say thanks to Southernsbroadstock and TTAT on behalf of all the children who will benefit from using the laptops. We are pleased to welcome Southernsbroadstock and TTAT as Friends of Kanzi Kibera and are extremely grateful for their interest and support.

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