I have joined forces wiith the organization, NextAid, to help raise funds for the Kawangware Vision Centre (KVC) in Nairobi, Kenya
This incredible project is located in the Kawangware slum. KVC is made up kids that used to live on the streets. They started a business making custom-made silkscreened gift bags out of recycled paper, which they sell mainly to tourism companies in Kenya, 9 years ago. The funds generated helps them take care of their families and little kids, who are orphans, and it also provides employment for many of the youths in the community. (see some pics here.)
Right now, they are building a new facility on their own piece of land, on the outskirts of the slum. The youths are being trained in ecological construction and are building the workshop and community center themselves. With these new skills in eco-construction, they are starting a new business of making and selling earth bricks and roof tiles. The builders include young mothers too, which makes this project especially inspiring and needed.
They need another $15,000 to finish the construction phase of the project, pay for the land, and move onto the business development phase. This should be done in a heartbeat. I know the economy is tough here in the US right now and there is a lot of need, but its all relative. We have so much more than they do. Here are some urgent reasons why projects like this are so important:
- 9 million youth in Kenya are unemployed.
- 41% of Kenya’s population lives in cities. Many children are sent to urban centers to find work to support families in rural areas. Here they are vulnerable to exploitation, abuse, and life on the streets.
- One in two Kenyans lives below the poverty line.
- Only 24% of Kenyan children attend secondary school. School fees and costs are usually the primary barrier to sending a child to further education.
- There are an estimated 250,000 to 300,000 children living and working on the streets in Kenya.
Now join me and make a donation today! Raising $11,000 in honor of Jonathan's11th birthday is our goal!
We just returned from our journey and are have uploaded new photos. A new video is being created now.
Jay Heit (aka Jonathan's dad)
More info about NextAid the project is here: http://www.nextaid.org