Mathare Kosovo School
The remaining balance of funds from the Kenya Trust was used to procure furniture for Mathare Kosovo School and indeed the new nursery at Mathare North Corps. The amount was topped up slightly by the Corps, but they were extremely pleased and thankful for the assistance given. The school project at Mathare Kosovo has been a challenge from start to finish and given all the circumstances and issues, we are very pleased with the results. There have also been a number of recent legal challenges to our ownership of the land / building, which apparently is to be expected within the slum areas of Kenya. Fortunately, we had liaised with all the relevant authorities prior to commencing the project to ensure due diligence and as a result TSA KE has won all the legal cases. However, in terms of the running of the school, the disputes have actually helped us galvanize the community and there is much greater community and indeed SA ownership of the school now. As a result, the school is now thriving and the community, teachers and parents and the TSA KE remain committed to improving the standards. We are so grateful for the support for this project. As you know, the school is situated in one of the poorest and more dangerous areas of Nairobi but providing an extremely important service. Our hope is that many of the children that learn here will be able to escape from poverty. We are very grateful for the trust you showed in us to develop this project. We feel we have achieved all the aims and the project was good value for money. We know this school will have a real impact.
With regards the other, most recent projects. The kitchen at Kibera has been completed. The nursery is now self-contained and the food is cooked in a much healthier environment. In the longer term there is a need for new industrial Jikos (open cookers) and this is being looked into by the Project Office. We are grateful for the ongoing supporting given to Kibera over the years and to those who helped with this important project. For most children, the food they get at the nursery is the only nutritious food and often the only meal they receive each day. The graduation rate for those going on to Primary School is always over 90% and part of this is that the children are receiving healthy and nutritious meals which improves health and keeps attendance high (NB: To attend school in Kenya you need to pass an exam – and therefore affordable and effective early childhood education is essential, particularly in the slum areas). The new kitchen will ensure these achievements and benefits continue.
We are in the process of improving the playgrounds at the nursery at Thika School for the Blind, as part of wider scale improvement of the surrounding area. The funding for this came through the Kenya Trust from Chelmsford Corps. The Kenya Trust was also kind enough to support a similar upgrade of the playground at Joytown Primary School (Special Unit and Nursery). The current playgrounds are dilapidated and unusable due to safety and accessibility issues. A down payment of 50% has been paid to the contractor for both playgrounds. The contractor is same person who has done an excellent job in supplying and installing a new playground at Kabete and Dandora. We expected this project to be completed by the end of January 2014.
We have received the first installment (GBP10, 000) for this project and currently we are just finalizing the tender arrangements with the contractors. We expect to start construction in February 2014 – tender documents being presented to the Board on 15th January 2014.
We are also pleased to advise that the USA Central Territory have agreed to fund the equipment for the clinic so now everything is in place for the project to proceed. I think I sent you the initial proposal but I am attaching the amended information giving the background.
Alongside the health clinic, we are undertaking a series of community health trainings and will train 44 people to become community health workers. This will ensure greater reach of the clinic and a health prevention programme in place to accompany the day clinic.
We remain extremely grateful for the grants give to Kenya East Territory Projects Office. We know this represents a lot of hard work on the part of the trustees and we really appreciate all the effort. Hopefully you will feel that the funds we have made are really making a difference in the lives of some of Kenya’s most vulnerable people. May God bless you all! Asante sana!