Friends of Ngong Road has been working with Kenyan students for 14 years, helping sponsors and supporters build personal connections with Kenyans. The organization is committed to helping sponsors and donors establish relationships with the students in their program. In our world today, now challenged by COVID-19, we may be a world away but personal connections are still indispensable!
Kenya has 28 confirmed COVID-19 cases, with international flights prohibited after midnight on March 25. The president and his deputy have taken 80% pay cuts, while high-ranking officials have taken 50% cuts. The government has waived income tax for those earning less than 24,000 KSH per month and reduced it for higher wage earners.
Our normal process is to distribute 15 food packets monthly to families in the greatest need. From March 23rd to 27th alone we distributed 50. We will try to increase this food distribution as we get more information about where the greatest need lies. A food packet is pretty basic: 1 kg of beans, 2 kg of rice, 500 g of cooking fat, and 4 kg of maize flour. A family of four can enjoy Kenya’s ugali daily with collard greens or kale for a week.
The Kenyan offices are operating with a skeleton staff and handling meetings by appointment only. The computer lab and library are closed. We may allow some students to use it by appointment in the coming days and weeks. Caseworkers conduct weekly calls to support families, collecting data on job availability, those who travelled to rural areas, and support needs. This helps identify those in need of assistance and ensures a better understanding of their situation.
Thank you for the personal connections you have made with our friends in Kenya. We’re all in this together!