Due to the international COVID-19 Pandemic now taking hold in Kenya, the most urgent need in the slums of Nairobi is for food and clean water. Mathare slum where Alfajiri organization works with child rescue and support is one of the biggest and most densely populated slums in Africa. See recent business daily article.
Desperation deepens as many feeding programs and help organizations are closing their doors. Children sent home from school the day after the announcement about Covid 19 in Kenya, are flooding the streets and slum areas as poor parents struggle to cope or just let their children go. Large packs of children are roaming in the slum unaware of the precautions recommended. They share food and even clothes. They are eating out of garbage dumps and rubbish bins and drinking out of puddles. They do not have toilets and have nowhere to bathe or to sleep. There are also many mother of small children looking for help for their families.
We supply dry food to give out for cooking and several times a week, hot food for 100 prepared in the kitchen of a small hotel owner in the Mlango Kubwa base. We are beginning to feed children in the TRM base too. They have told us that if they beg for food sometimes strangers call the police. They have been advised to stay in the same place and not to roam.
We are giving cooked food in the base where they live and telling them about washing hands and staying apart even though in the streets this is not really possible. Once covid 19 gets into the slum there is no telling the devastation that will begin.
We have at least 50 children whom we have rescued in the last several years and sponsor in schools. There are also serval boys we have managed to send to the rural areas at the beginning of the pandemic. Jobs are scarce. How can families who live hand to mouth store food or self-isolate. Our sponsored children are so far safe out of Nairobi or in their families. We have relocated one e family to the country. Another Mama is sewing face masks to try and earn something to pay her rent. In some cases we assist with rent.
We need help for these families in the emergency. As the whole world suffers under the pandemic, fear that there will be no help for the desperate situation here grows. When it is over we want to send our children back to schools and training. For now they are at great risk and we don’t want to lose them.
We need every help to find food and shelter for our kids and to keep them as stable as possible until better days. The lives of the poor and homeless are more at risk than ever. This is an urgent plea for donations of any kind no matter how large or small.