PATHWAYS Leadership for Progress

PATHWAYS mission is develop leaders in developing countries through university scholarships and direct involvement in and oversight of community development projects.
Jan 29, 2015

Jan 2015 report

Patients being served at dental clinic
Patients being served at dental clinic

Nairobi Kenya

Jan 2015

Dear Friends,

Dentacare Kenya has been progressing well in helping needy Kenyans receive dental care. We conducted two camps in this quarter. One was  at Dagoretti corner,Nairobi. This was is conjunction with the Operation Smile organization formed by a group of maxillofacial surgeons who offer free cleft lip and palate surgery. We got to attend to 414 persons. We did 96 extractions and the other cases we referred to the nearest hospital which is Kenyatta Hospital Dental Dept.

LastOctober, the Kitui country government and Mwingi District Hospital public health officials planned a medical and dental camp at Kasilani Primary school, Mwingi town. Dentcare Kenya was involved in the event where a total of 264 dental patients were attended to in the afternoon. Extractions performed were 78 in number and 106 were referred for treatment to the dental hospital.

Due to observed demand of dental treatment we had to relocate one of the dental units, the one at Kayole-Matopeni slum to Mwingi Town, Kitui where we’ll offer some of the services not available at the district hospital. We got space in a local private hospital where we are partnering in healthcare service provision. The residents of Matopeni slums will have to travel to come to the Mihang’o Dental clinic for services.

Thank you for supporting our efforts to provide free and affordable dental care to underprivileged children and adults in Kenya.

 

Dr. David Mundia, President

Dec 23, 2014

December 2014 report

Beneficiary of mentorship and training
Beneficiary of mentorship and training

Nairobi, Kenya

December 2014

Dear Friends,

December is a month of celebrations! And visits to families, friends, and homes of less fortunate and other groups are usually common.  It is a time to remember those who ‘touched us’ in whatever way and having reflections together.  SAWA visited the family of Josephine, who was a beneficiary of the Gender Based Violence training, and who from the training became an advocate of the rights of women in her village in Ntugi, Meru County.  Josephine narrated to us how she mobilized the community to recover the only cow of her neighbor, a friend, which had been sold without her consent. And the story goes ….

‘Mama Mercy, a housewife aged 32, lives a few meters from my home. She is a hard working lady who feds for her family composed of four – two children 2 and 4 years, and a husband who runs a second-hand clothes at the nearby market. The husband has been harsh to her and abuses her both physically and mentally.   He uses all the proceeds from his business on drinking alcohol and gets home in the evening to demand for food and other provisions from her jobless wife.  The family one cow has been the sole source of the wife’s income and food – they consume the milk and sell two liters daily for Kshs.95 (nearly a dollar).  On the fateful morning, she woke up in the morning and took the bowl as usual and headed to the cow shed to milk her cow.  To a surprise, the cow was not there.  The husband had sold it during the night at a throw away price to get money to enjoy during this festive season.  In tears, Mama Mercy went to Josephine her neighbor and shared the sad story.  Josephine took her to the area Chief to report and within a few hours mobilization was done to help reclaim the cow since the buyer was already identified. In short, Mama Mercy got her cow back – courtesy of Josephine who is a Gender Equity advocate in her community.  The man was warned of severe communal consequences if he ever interfered with family property without consulting the wife.  Women in this community are thus gaining power and I pride myself for having been able to provide education – that you SAWA for training me”

Such stories are very common where women are demanding to be involved in decision making at the family level. SAWA’s programs recognize this and give priority to sensitization and education to give women a voice particularly at the family level.

With gratitude and best wishes for the new year,

Catherine Kaimenyi

Links:

Nov 7, 2014

November Report

some children we visited at the childrens home
some children we visited at the childrens home

Nairobi, Kenya

November 2014

 

Dear Friends,

We look back to count our achievements for the year almost coming to the end with humility as we highlight key areas that we have made impact.

  1. The girls who are direct beneficiaries of our program  from 2012 to 2013 started mentorship projects in their respective villages.  In January 2014, 13 girls aged 13-14 years joined various high schools.  We have reports that these girls are performing extemporary well in their schools and two of them were actually elected as their class prefects. This leadership is a manifestation of the benefits of the mentorship program.
  2. In January this year, we launched a mini-project at the SAWA office where girls come to the office to do practice on areas of their potential careers on Sunday afternoons. For example those interested in journalism, like the 10 year old Catherine W, will write articles, peruse National Newspapers to indentify current themes and practice taking photos using our cameras.  Others would model bank cashiers/tellers and spend time counting dummy notes and balancing accounts.  The demand for participation increased during the course of the year and we opened Saturday afternoons as well to meet the demand.  We are happy to report that 18 girls aged 9 – 22 have benefited from this weekend program.  The program also meant that participants have a better way to spend their free time which could otherwise been spent idling or engaging in behaviors that could even lead to early pregnancies.
  3. SAWA partnered with women of the Methodist Church to explore the topic of mentorship. As a result the older women agreed to mentoring the younger girls not only in the church but also in their communities. Other ladies volunteer to help SAWA in mentoring their girls.  This has seen the mentorship program to expand.  A total of 45 women from the church joined the program.
  4. During this year too, we became partners with a Children’s Home run by Kenya Connection  Ministries  located in rural Chuka, Tharaka Nithi county.  The home houses 28 children aged between five and twenty, and in extension supports a total of 160 orphan and very needy children and young adults in primary and high schools  within the community.  We have been able to visit the home to mentor the children and talk to them about social life and education issues.
  5. One of our first lot mentee, Margaret N got married during the course of the year. Margaret revealed to us that were it not for the mentorship attained at SAWA, she would probably have gotten herself pregnant before deciding on the marriage. But she was able to start her business first, save some money for her own use, then was better able to make a decision on when to get married.  SAWAs mentorship program is bridging a gap that seems to be widening among girls in Kenya today – a situation where girls are getting children when they are actually not prepared which is shattering the dreams for many.

 

We are preparing for a conference in December where all the direct beneficiaries come together to celebrate their successes, encourage each other in case of things that never worked as planned and chart a way forward for better participation in the project in the coming years.  We are thankful to our supporters who have seen us through this far and continue asking for continued partnership to accomplish bigger plans.

 

Catherine Kaimenyi

Project Leader

 
   

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