The year 2019 started well and we had students reporting back to school after long December holiday and they will be breaking for April holiday this week. It has been very dry in most parts of the country and Kokwa Island is one of those prone areas facing food insecurity and the prolonged drought make it even worse. We have many families who urgently require relief food, in our small way we are supporting those who are seriously affected but there is need for more interventions to improve the situation. We have been supporting feeding program in one of the primary school in the Island and it has been reported that it is the only meal that school going children are getting since their parents have nothing to feed them. We are appealing to our friends, relatives and all well-wishers to consider supporting Kokwa with food soonest possible. For friends, relatives and well-wishers in the country who are in a position to support the community with food stuff please contact us and we will arrange to pick the food stuff from your respective places. In the previous report we had planned to fundraise for mosquito nets to be distributed to the families in the Island but since the community is seriously food insecure at the moment we decided to divert our plan a bit and address the hunger issue. There has been several meetings with the community where it has been reported that children, women and elderly people are the most affected by the drought and we have been distributing food stuff to some families but now they whole Kokwa Island is in urgent need of relief food. We hope the government will also intervene but we are worried as this might take longer for the government to respond. There reports on the media that there are several people who have lost their lives as a result of hunger but we have not received any death case from Kokwa Island and we remain optimistic that it will not get to that point. We request those who are in a position to support us to consider sending their contribution so that we can deliver more food to the Kokwa Island community. Thank you to all those who have been supporting us on this and other initiatives in Kokwa Island as we request them not to get tired of supporting the community as they still need us for survival. We are very concerned as the school will be closing for April holiday this week and the families will have extra mouths to feed but we remain optimistic that the situation will improve soon with government and other service providers getting involved.
The year 2018 was good and we achieved in one way or the other, we appreciate all the support given by our Global Giving friends and partners and we wish them well in 2019. Kokwa community is counting blessings despite the many challenges they faced throughout the year and they have high hopes that the year 2019 will be more successful. As previously reported, we had a kid from the Island who required immediate medical attention and after various tests, it was recommended to have the kid operated in December 2018. Am happy to report that the operation was successfully done on 12th December 2018 and the kid responded very well. It was a complicated matter which required physiologist intervention and we supported to sessions which were done successfully. To shed more light, the kid had 2 sexual organs and since birth the kid was treated as a boy but when all the tests were done, it was confirmed that the kid was a girl. It is still a hectic moment especially for the kid to understand and accept the changes, the kid is in nursery school and since he started schooling he has been in boys’ school uniform and now the kid is expected to report school in a dress as her school uniform. We are trying to have the kid transferred from that school but unfortunately there is no other close primary school where she can go for schooling. The alternatives we have are having the kid move from nuclear family and be hosted by other family members outside the Island but we are concerned of this option as the kid requires mother’s love and care especially after the operation. The other alternative is having the whole family move from Island and settle somewhere else. The family depends on fishing for food and some little income which means they are not in a position to start a new life somewhere else. The option of relocating is much better but require support for the whole family. We are working on possibilities of supporting the family start new living elsewhere and have an income generating activity for them to move on. We call upon our friends and well-wishers to help us in supporting these needy families as we realize in the Island we have several families who are very vulnerable and they have very little for survival.
In the previous reported, it was reported that the cases of malaria are still high and we need to find ways of reducing them. Previously we distributed mosquito nets to all households in the Island but this is some years back and most of them are worn out while other families don’t have them at all. In regard to this, we hope to do fundraising for more nets so that we can distribute them a fresh as a way of reducing the disease. To achieve this, we call upon well-wishers and partners to help us raise funds to start this initiative. The current temporally dispensary have some drugs for malaria but we still need to support the dispensary where possible. Again we express our gratitude to all our friends and partners for supporting our projects and we wish them a fruit year as they continue extending support to our needy communities. Happy prosperous New Year 2019.
The Kokwa community is progressing on well and we are happy to report that we implemented the intervention of distributing hygiene materials, mosquito nets and rehydration solution (ORS) for children as previously reported an initiative which was positively appreciated by the whole community and they expressed their gratitude to all those who supported them. We also managed to conduct need assessment survey in Kokwa Island a very crucial intervention as we were able to learn and understand more about the Kokwa community their strength and their weaknesses. The community cooperated very well and they freely and voluntary shared into details on the challenges and problems facing the Island. Some of the areas that we focused on were; community health, water and sanitation, food and nutrition security, education, environment and resources. The team conducting the baseline survey prepared a report that now gives the whole picture of the Island. During the intervention some of the priority areas of interventions that requires immediate interventions are; community health, sanitation, food and nutrition security. We were able to get more details and data from the current dispensary where we learnt that the cases of malaria in the Island is still high and most people were diagnosed with malaria parasite this year. The team concluded that there is more to be done in the Island in order to improve the living standards of the community. We intend to share this report and findings with all well-wishers and shareholders including County Government of Baringo and together we will realize some of the goals that we have already set. The team divided the priority areas in 2 parts that is, long and short term interventions. The short term interventions are the areas that required immediate support and they were not very expensive. Long term intervention are areas that are critical and requires more resources to accomplish them .Some of the short term intervention identified were; supporting children in the community with health issues that required special medication, address the high cases of malaria, supporting school going kids with shoes, utensils for the school feeding program and remedial learning materials. We are happy to report that we have already addressed the cases of medication and the children are now on medication but one of them will be required to go for operation in December 2018. We have also supported the children with shoes and provided remedial learning materials in Kokwa and Kirepare primary schools. We wish to request for more support from our global giving friends and other partners in order to enable us implement the interventions already identified. In December 2018, we are organizing a stakeholder’s forum to inform the stakeholders the status of the Island and deliberate on what should be done for the support of the community. Thank you all for the support given and we humbly request for more support in order to achieve our goals.
It is unfortunate to report again that the Kokwa dispensary is still not operating and by the look of the things, it will not operate any time soon. This is very discouraging especially for the Kokwa community as they had a lot of hope that their healthy issues will be solved once they have the dispensary operating with a full time qualified nurse serving the community. The dispensary committee has been following up with the concerned department without success. I will be in Kokwa Island for a week conducting a need assessment survey and health issues is one of the aspect that we intend to focus on as we have realized that nutrition security is an issue in the community with children, breastfeeding mothers, pregnant women and elderly being more vulnerable. Together with other well-wishers and contributions through Global Giving Platform, we have decide to address some of the emerging issues in the Island as a result of flooding of the lake where we intend to support the community with hygiene soap, mosquito nets, aqua/water guards for water treatment and oral rehydration solution (ORS) for young children with diarrhea and vomiting cases. We intend to distribute these materials next week during the need assessment survey. This intervention has been prioritized as the current flooding of the lake is posing danger to the Kokwa community and we decided to support the community to protect them from malaria as a result of increased number of mosquitoes and water related health issues. We are so grateful for the support given through global giving community as this intervention will for sure protect Kokwa community. Thank you very much we really appreciate the support given and we will keep you updated on the progress and impact of this intervention and we encourage you to consider supporting us further to expand the intervention as we have just addressed a few issues with the available resources. We intend to expand the intervention to support the whole community with more medical and hygiene materials as we continue with our previous interventions.
The year 2018 started well and together with our beneficiaries we are progressing on well despite the challenges here and there. We appreciate the support given through global giving community towards Kokwa community and we thank all the well-wishers who have given a hand in this. The community dispensary is still not operating as the County government is yet to finish final finishes and employing a nurse to serve the community. People with serious issues have been travelling all the way to Marigat, Kabarnet and Nakuru to seek medical services where some of them have not been managing to go for all the appointments given as it is expensive to raise fare to and from Kokwa Island as well as money for the medical services. Majority of Kokwa community members depend on fishing for the income therefore not able to earn more for savings to cater for emergencies and even difficult when they or their family members fell sick. We have supported 6 of the community members to seek further medication in Nakuru Provincial General Hospital and Marigat district hospital and 3 students from the Island who required further medication. The community nurse has been addressing some of the issues but since he is not in the Island to offer daily services, it becomes a challenge to follow up with all the appointments that requires to be addressed. The dispensary committee is following up with the county government to have the dispensary operating with a permanent nurse who will be available whenever required by the community.
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