Updated: Jun 5
The Queen Esther Project, Inc. (QEP) announces collaboration with Kenyan NGO (non-governmental organization), Agrisystems Foundation, for the purpose of alleviating suffering due to flooding, and COVID-19 spread. The effort additionally aids the "Big Four Plan" for the Kenyan economy set forth by Kenyan President, Uhuru Kenyatta.
The "Kenya Emergency COVID and Disaster Response " project was launched due to the increasing, and urgent, need to find solutions to recent events in Kenya.
The COVID-19 pandemic is occurring against a backdrop of increased humanitarian needs due to back-to-back drought, floods, desert locust, and a COVID-19 outbreak. As of May 31, 2020, Kenyan COVID cases were 2,216 with 74 deaths. COVID spread is intensifying due to a series of events leaving hundreds of thousands without shelter. Kenya is increasing testing. Case load is much higher than current numbers show.
The worst flooding in generations due to heavy rain has devastated communities in Kenya reeling from COVID-19. Approximately, 233,000 people have been impacted, 200,000 or more displaced. The Kenyan Government says 237 people who where unable to escape the sudden flooding and have died.
Heavy rains also swept away the main water pipes running through forests in the Aberdare Mountain Range north of Kenya's capital of Nairobi the first weekend in May. The Nairobi Water and Sewerage Company shut down a treatment plant for repairs which fed water to the city. Huge swathes of Nairobi are struggling with little to no water and supplies at a time when COVID-19 is spreading. Flooding from tsunami of water flowing from the burst pipes has rendered more than 800,000 effected, with 600,0000 remaining displaced.
SUMMARY OF AREAS IMPACTED:
The Kangemi Slum - This area lies on the Eastern part of Nairobi Central Business area of Nairobi County. The population is 100,000; there is no running water. Kangemi is one of 200 slums in Nairobi, Kenya. The slum has over 150,000 people congested in a small valley with steep slopes rolling down the Nairobi River.
The Kirbira Slum: This is Africa's largest slum - the sprawling, densely-populated informal settlement of Kibera is are in a race to stop the spread of COVID-19. Around 60% of the Kenyan capital's 4.4 million inhabitants live in 200 high-density informal settlements such as Kibera. The population is one million who suffer from extreme poverty.
The Kariobangi Slum: With a population of over 100,000 living in 800 semi permanent, permanent structures, a controversy ensues over public land rights and the impoverished dwellers. More than 7,000 are without shelter.
Landslides: At least 29 died in landslides caused by severe weather in West Pokot county, Kenya.
The landslides, affecting the villages of:
Kitony (Northern part of the North Rift Valley, Market county.
Chesegoni Elgeyo Market lays at the border of Pokot Chesegoni Marakwet County.
Paraka - West Pokot
Nyarkulien and Muino in West Pukot.
Officials say the villages have been cut off by flooded roads and at least one bridge was reportedly swept away. President Uhuru Kenyatta said in a statement that his "heartfelt condolences were with the relatives and friends of the victims." There remains massive destruction to property and infrastructure. Seven children were among the dead recovered, said officials.
Further, bursting river have caused havoc to the residents rendering them homeless: The Nzoia-River, The Bundalangi River, Nyando River. Video below.
At the helm of The Queen Esther Project, Inc. is Lisa Benson. Lisa is a former Global Affairs radio journalist/ broadcaster (KKNT, Phoenix) based in Arizona. Her background includes an undergraduate degree at the State University of New York, Albany, and master's in public policy work at the Rockefeller Institute of Public Policy, SUNY, Albany. Lisa has been engaged as a development consultant for nonprofits in Europe, the Middle East, Africa and the United States for 30-years. She is an avid hiker, and professional photographer, using the lens of her camera to capture the incredible vistas of the Southwest United States.
In collaboration with Lisa Benson, and The Queen Esther Project, Inc. is Mr. Donald Mutuku Syuma, CEO, Agrisystems Foundation, registered in Nairobi, Kenya. Mr. Mutuku has over 30+ years in private and public enterprises. From 1976-1994, he worked with the World Bank. In 1997, Mr. Mutuku assumed a Diplomatic assignment and was posted to the Japanese Foreign Affairs Desk in Kenya. His Civil Service assignments include to this day as a conduit to securing a civil society for Kenya.
The collaboration project, "Kenya Emergency COVID & Disaster Response" seeks to raise $20,000 before July 1, 2020. Subsequently, financial goals through the end of 2010 include $250,000 from various foundations, individuals, corporations in the United States and abroad.
Distribution of food, clothing, medicine and COVID-19 prevention supplies will have oversight and evaluation on the ground in Kenya.
For further information, please contact: Lisa Pandone Benson at: LisaPandoneBenson@gmail.com