Dora’s Corner: February Updates from East Africa

Hello World, what are you grappling with as you read this? It’s a Tuesday morning as I type this and my social media feed is filled with everything related to Valentine’s Day but I am at work and looking forward to treating myself to some wet fry chicken and chapatti later on. 

The second month of this year started out great for the Global Partners team in Kenya because we got to host friends from the US, some who have long supported the projects we implemented and others who were visiting Kenya for the very first time. We spent time visiting some projects and fun sites from February 2 to February 9. Seeing the GPFD US team and getting to discuss the way forward in terms of initiatives and enhanced collaboration with the county government of Homabay also had me thinking beyond the milestones we have achieved.

I loved meeting the communities and schools I worked with in Suba North Constituency in 2020-2021 when we visited Utajo Primary School and Obalwanda School. Global Partners constructed two classrooms at Utajo during the peak of COVID-19 and supported a second phase at the school which saw the construction of latrines and rainwater harvesting equipped with a 10,000-liter water tank. 

At Obalwanda, GPFD and the community had solarized a water distribution system to supply homes, the primary school, the special school, the local dispensary and the church with water. In the greater Homabay region, there was the visit to Ogande Special School where we got to bond with the learners, know about the challenges the administration was facing, and their take on the water project we’d implemented in 2021.

One thing that motivates me in terms of the way we work is knowing that local communities have a say on the project from the very beginning and visiting the sites I mentioned was even more encouraging to see how well they are managed years on. I hope that we can extend this approach to new initiatives and engage more partners and the government to ensure ownership and sustainability. 

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