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Paths to Progress: What's Happening in Kakamega
Community Partner Highlights
Divine Providence Children's Home supports orphans through educational opportunities and positive nutrition. The organization offers a sponsorship program to assist youth with school fees and has developed a student leadership program.
Send a Cow aims to empower communities to become self-sustaining farming institutions with good health/hygiene practices, income security, and enough food. The organization also promotes HIV/AIDS awareness and gender equity.
Western Education Advocacy and Empowerment Program (WEAEP) supports marginalized groups through psychosocial support, skills training, and advocacy. A volunteer-run organization, WEAEP empowers women and children through literacy programs and microfinance initiatives.
Introduction to the East African Village
The town of Kakamega is situated on the edge of world renowned rainforest, not far from Lake Victoria. Along with its exceptional natural beauty, Kakamega offers an authentic representation of East African village life. Yet, two-thirds of the region’s population falls below the poverty line, directly relying upon the water and land resources surrounding their communities. With seventy-five percent of the workforce engaged in agriculture, Kenyan farmers face growing problems of soil erosion, deforestation, water pollution, and desertification. FSD's community partners focus on sustainable technologies to combat environmental degradation--as well as healthcare measures that target pressing medical issues. The situation with HIV/AIDS is particularly striking in the Kakamega region, where awareness levels remain low and medical facilities are few and far between.
Avg. temperature: Low 62ºF / High 85ºF
Local language: Swahili
Topic: Environmental sustainability
Intern: Christopher Waybill
The Kakamega Environmental Education Program (KEEP) and Intern Christopher Waybill are putting the “rain in rainforest” with a pilot program to construct pico-hydration systems that harness the energy supplied by rainfall. KEEP will use this energy to bring electricity to small structures called bandas used by tourists and locals alike.
Topic: Women’s empowerment
Intern: Supriya Prakash
Western Education Advocacy and Empowerment Program (WEAEP) has initiated the Sustainable Beekeeping Empowerment Program for local women to generate income and support their families. Women receive training in the art of beekeeping and honey harvesting, promoting financial independence and a network of support.
Peter Khamusali Ingosi, Program Director
Peter is a long-time advocate of grassroots development in his home village of Shikokho, Kenya and has more than ten years of experience working in the private, public, and NGO sectors. Peter holds a degree in Sustainable Development and a Masters in Community Development and brings his dedication, passion, and experience working at the local, national, and international levels to his work. Peter recently held a community development training using FSD's model for a group of Kenyans and U.S. students starting their own NGO in a neighboring town.