Kisumu, Kenya

During our visit in October 2007 we have seen some particularly needy cases. These are just a few of them.


Janet is an active member of the school committee at Alara Primary School near Kisumu. She has three children, all attending Alara Primary School. The oldest is in Std. Class 4. (Aged 11)

Janet's husband died of HIV AIDS. Her father died yesterday. She is far from being healthy and also has HIV, and does not expect to live more than a couple of years. (Thankfully she is receiving some drugs to stave off the effects of her illness). She has no job or any means of support. There is nobody to look after her children apart from herself.

Janet is worried how she will support her children right now, and worse still, what will become of them when she dies?

October 27th 2007

After discussions with Tom and Perez we have today found a solution to help Janet. Tom's idea.... which will work:

We have donated Ksh 6,000 (£44.22) to Janet to buy several large sacks of maize from a wholesaler. With this she will go to Kiboswa market and sell the maize. Money from the sales will provide enough to buy several more sacks of maize plus a profit which will be used to buy food and clothes.

Setting up a small business like this will enable her to be self sustaining, and also to save some money too. She wouldn't have been able to do this without the little capital investment that we have made.


Vivian lives with her grandmother in the Manyatta slum district of Kisumu, with two brothers and two sisters. Both her parents died from AIDS. She has a four year old daughter. None of the family have any job or means of support. It is likely that Vivian also carriedsthe HIV virus.

Girls such as Vivian will do anything to earn money for food. Her situation is desperate. There is only one way that she can earn some money to help feed herself and her grandmother, and that is by selling sex. If she can, she will earn Ksh 200/= (£1.45), although when really hungry she might go as low as Ksh 50/= (£0.37).

She doesn't want to do this! But jobs are so scarce. She would like to train to be a hairdresser, but that would require training.


Cynthia lives with her two younger brothers at their grandmother's house. It is one room divided by a curtain, in a slum building .

The family lives in apalling conditions.

Cynthia is pregnant and will have her baby in two month's time. In order to earn money to feed her grandmother and younger brothers, she will sell sex. She doesn't want to do this, but there is simply no alternative. Without some form of training, she cannot get a job.

Kisumu is the third largest city in Kenya, with a population of about two million. Most of them live in slums, and there are thousands of girls in the same situation as Cynthia.

The building where Cynthia lives has six "apartments", and each apartment has one room, in which there is a destitute family.

The conditions are truly horriffic. There is no electricity, no water, and no toilet. People just do it outside. We were hit by the smell of excrement as we walked towards the building.

What can be done to help young girls such as Vivian and Cynthia? Is it a hopeless situation?

A possible solution.

We visited a local hairdresser Roslida Amyembe, who owns her own hairdressing salon. She started the business in 1999. She was married in 1998, and her husband died in 2004. She has three children.  She would be willing to train Vivian and Cynthia to be hairdressers. An initial sum of Ksh.6,000/= (£44.00) would be needed for hairdressing equipment and she would be happy to take up to six orphan girls like Cynthia and Vivian for Ksh 2,500/= per week (£18.43) - that's for all six girls. That would be needed for about six months until training was complete, after which the girls would be in a position to set up their own hairdressing businesses.

Left: The salon run by Roslida Amyembe.

We took Cynthia and Vivian there to discuss the possibilities.

The project would cost a total of  Ksh 68,500/= (£505.00) to train up to six girls for the 6 month period.

Could this be an answer to the plight of six girls in this horrible situation?

If you would like to help us with this project, then please click on the "Donate" button.
Payments are accepted securely though Paypal in any currency.
No matter how small, we really appreciate your donations, and the Kenyans will too!
Remember, we don't take anything out of the fund for our trips and expenses, nothing comes out for administration costs. Every penny of donations gets put to good, direct use.

If you fancy coming with us on one of our future trips to Kisumu, then let us know. We'll not hide the fact that you will pay for your trip expenses, the hotel where we stay in Kisumu isn't 5 star (its cheap and basic, but OK), you will need lots of innoculations, and you will eat basic food. But, you will have a life-changing experience, and you will want to go back again and become even more involved.

Contact us by email at info@helpkenyakids.org
Cheques payable to "R Neep - Kenya Fund"

Our Kenya Children Sponsorship

Rod & Gay Neep
51 St. Whites Road, Cinderford, Gloucestershire GL14 3DF, England

email: info@helpkenyakids.org

Phone: +44 (0)1594 829412
Fax : +44 (0) 1594 829298