Kisiwani Widows and Orphans Support Group, a Kenyan community group that works with women and children affected by the HIV epidemic in the country. They are raising money to start a flour mill to help generate income.
I first encountered Kisiwani back in 2008 on my first trip to Kenya. Jacob and Leah, two of their founding members, were colleagues and friends who helped me feel welcome and introduced me to grassroots development work. I helped them apply for a grant for their counseling and support work benefiting women and children affected by HIV/AIDS, which was successful.
Jacob, Leah and the other volunteer staff of Kisiwani are tireless in their efforts to help the people and communities they love. The embody the idea of living positively with their attitudes, energy and commitment to HIV/AIDS community work. Their beneficiaries are some of the most vibrant, strong people I have met in my travels.
In recent years, HIV has not been high on the international development agenda. Migration, Ebola, COVID-19 and other issues have eclipsed it. This year, Kisiwani and other small organisations have been hard hit. Not only are COVID-19 restrictions making it difficult for everyone to earn a living (many people don't have the luxury of working from home), but international donors are focusing on COVID-19 to the exclusion of other per-existing and sometimes even more deadly issues in less developed countries.
With that in mind, I would like to help Kisiwani with their Posho (Corn Flour) Mill project. having a posho mill will give both the organisation and the beneficiaries a way to generate some income during this difficult time. The organisation will own and manage the mill, using profits for their activities, and beneficiaries will work at the mill, using their incomes to feed their families.
They have already started saving, but they need some help. I will be helping them with whatever I can, but your input is also greatly appreciated, even just a few dollars.
If you have questions about the project, don't hesitate to reach out to me through this page. You can also check out Kisiwani's website at www.kisiwaniwidows. org.
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