What’s in our January 2021 Newsletter: Notes from the Field COVID Update & Handwashing Stations ~ Welcome New Board Members ~ Yes! YOU Are Making a World of Difference, a World Away, Annual Appeal Report ~ Water & Sanitation Committee Report ~ Shopping for Smiles
A pivot is a change in strategy without a change in vision. ~ Eric Ries, American author, entrepreneur and blogger
Notes from the Field
By Nereah Obura, P4P Kenya Program Coordinator
Dear P4P Friend,
Over 91,127 cases of COVID-19 have been reported in Kenya since March 2020. The pandemic has deeply affected the lives of the most vulnerable families. Most live on less than $1 a day and have little access to clean water and soap. The Kenyan government and World Health Organization have stressed handwashing and social distancing, but these preventative measures are difficult for most people to practice.
P4P has been in the forefront supporting the Kenyan government’s efforts to stem the spread of COVID-19. We procured 50 handwashing stations and 1,000 bars of soap which the Ministry of Health distributed in the community. Community Health Volunteers were equipped with additional handwashing stations and they educated households and villages on their use and importance.
Additionally, P4P has given eight schools two handwashing stations each to enable the children to have access to clean water. Schools partially reopened in November. These stations along with those provided earlier in 2020 will go a long way in helping save lives.
Safety of pupils and students in schools is very important, especially during the pandemic. P4P has installed six-10,000 liter water tanks at schools this year. Twenty were set up earlier, and the combination should ensure that handwashing stations will not go dry and at the same time both teachers and students will have access to clean drinking water.
Welcome New Board Members
Partnering for Progress is delighted to start the new year with four talented new Board members. Volunteers are the lifeblood of P4P, and the Board of Directors is charged with leading the way as our programs develop in Kenya. Welcome aboard, Angie, Paige, Byron and Garry.
Angie Smith has been active on P4P’s Health Committee for over 3 years and currently works for Providence Healthcare as a healthcare quality analyst.
Byron Gega, longtime P4P supporter, joins the board with an abundance of experience as a financial advisor with Cariboo Wealth Advisors.
Paige Lawson is community relations coordinator at Numerica Credit Union where she oversees and executes the company’s sponsorships and charitable giving.
Dr. Garry Morgan is professor emeritus of intercultural studies at University of Northwestern-St. Paul, where he taught for 17 years. Prior to that he lived and worked in Kenya for 18 years.
Yes! YOU Are Making a World of Difference, a World Away
Thanks to donations from individual supporters, family foundations, scholarship sponsors and companies large and small, P4P raised over $12,620 in our 2020 annual appeal. This outpouring of generosity ensures our work will continue to bless those in need in Kenya.
Thanks to you, P4P installed six rainwater catchment tanks last year. With schools reopening this month, children and teachers will have access to safe drinking water. Instead of spending valuable school hours walking to nearby water sources, they can focus on learning.
As COVID-19 decimated health care and the economic systems already insufficient for the rural area we serve, you stepped up to help with a desperate need for food and safe water. Thanks to you, we have established 66 handwashing stations so far and have distributed over 700 emergency food baskets since April to families with malnourished infants, the elderly and those who suffered severe flooding. We did not plan to enter the disaster relief arena, but if your partners are hungry, that is the priority.
Six students excelled in eighth grade but lacked the financial resources to pursue high school. You stepped in with scholarships and now 23 high school students and seven college students are attending school in 2021. Thanks to your support, to date 25 students have graduated from high school and three have graduated from college.
With masks and physical distancing, P4P’s Power of Milk (POM) nutrition weekly meetings have resumed, and 30 malnourished infants are receiving nutritional supplements to help them grow into active toddlers. At POM meetings, parents receive a healthy meal and health education. Because of your gifts, 12 of 30 babies in POM achieved sufficient growth in the last three months to enable them to exit the program.
Last year, 18 farmers received robust seeds, agriculture education and enough fertilizer to raise bountiful crops that will support their families throughout the year. When farm families have a little extra money, how do you imagine they spend it? On school fees, food and medical care. P4P is also training them to save for the following year’s crops, seeds and fertilizer.
Thanks to your support the Poultry Project is off to a great start this month. Ten poultry farmers are building their own chicken coops and are being trained on poultry management. P4P will provide the initial chickens in cooperation with LimAfrica, a regional non-profit that aids small farmers by providing chicks, vaccines, feed and training. LimAfrica will also buy back the chickens when full-sized and no longer laying, as well as eggs, if the farmers are unable to sell them.
YOU reached out to our Kenya partners who have few options and opportunities.
YOU shared resources and hope for our partners in 26 villages.
YOU made a difference.
Dia Maurer, Part-Time Executive Director
Our Partners in Kenya
P4P's Board of Trustees
2020 Was Uniquely Challenging
Water & Sanitation Committee Report by Wayne Krafft, Committee Chair
Needless to say, 2020 didn’t go as planned. My wife, Patti, and I intended to travel to Kenya in the spring for program research work. One of my personal goals was to assess the performance of the many safe drinking water projects P4P has helped create in the community. However, as the COVID-19 virus swept across the globe early in the year, it was clear visiting the community and working face to face with our partners wasn’t going to happen.
By early spring, “pivot” became the word we all started using to describe the seemingly daily change of plans. The primary goals of the Water Committee are preventing the spread of diseases like cholera and typhoid, but under pandemic conditions, we pivoted and added a program to educate and enable our partners to implement COVID-19 safety measures.
As we all now know, handwashing is a critical practice to slow the spread of COVID-19. Unfortunately, handwashing is not a common practice in rural Kenya. Both soap and water are hard to come by and are generally considered too precious to use for simply keeping one’s hands clean. It is not common knowledge in rural areas that diseases are transmitted from unclean hands.
Thanks to quick thinking and action Nereah Obura, P4P’s Program Coordinator in Kenya, P4P was able to partner with the Ministry of Health to buy 50 hand washing tanks and 1,000 bars of soap. The Ministry supplied hand sanitizer and water purifying chlorine drops, and P4P was able to defray transportation costs so 26 Community Health Volunteers (CHVs) could deliver these lifesaving items.
Markets, clinics and vulnerable areas were targeted for distribution. The CHVs mapped out 20 priority households each to contact regarding the handwashing stations. Twenty-six demonstration sites were set up and 30 percent of all households received training on proper handwashing. The handwashing stations and the training provided will have lasting, positive public health benefits in the community long after COVID-19 is under control.
P4P’s efforts to supply the community with safe drinking water proceeded in 2020, despite all the turmoil created by the virus. Area schools were closed all year, budgets were cut, transportation interrupted, travel was banned, and severe curfews made progress difficult. Regardless, Nereah was able to partner with six schools to install 10,000-liter (2,600 gallon) rainwater collection and storage tanks. In a year with average rain, these six tanks will provide about 160,000 gallons of safe drinking water to the community, reducing waterborne disease and school absences due to sickness.
Shopping for Smiles
We received the quarterly AmazonSmile report informing us that your shopping efforts on Amazon netted P4P $64.33 in the last quarter of 2020. That’s some heartening news at the end of a stressful year.
Thank you for registering Partnering for Progress as your charity of choice with Amazon. Since we entered the program, $1,208.48 has been returned to P4P.
If you haven’t yet done so, you can sign up any time. Just go to http://smile.amazon.com and register. Then whenever you make a purchase, log onto to smile.amazon.com and 0.5 percent of your purchase will be donated to P4P. See how easy it is to keep those smiles coming?
Partnering for Progress
P.O. Box 28191
Spokane, Washington 99228