Caroline Achieng Ndagwa, a mother of three has been a widow for 17 years now. Apart from bearing loneliness, her heart has been weighed down by the plight of child headed households. “God spared my children, at least they have one parents but children without someone to care for them really suffer.’’ She joined Mageta widows group to make her journey in life more bearable.
Mageta is part of a group of grass root level groups in Nyanza that have joined hands to raise money to support a local fundraising drive by Kisumu based non-profit Omega Foundation.
Over the last 5 months or so, Yetu Initiative has been working with Omega Foundation to launch a fundraising campaign aimed at residents and the business community in Kisumu, Homa-Bay and Siaya counties. Through the ‘Uplift A Child-Headed Household’ campaign, Omega Foundation has set out to raise Kshs 5 Million to fund technical and vocational training that will impart market based skills to orphaned youth from child-headed homes.
The self-help groups drawn from Kisumu Siaya, and Homabay counties are standing in solidarity with Omega Foundation to tackle the increasing cases of child-headed households whose statistics stand at approximately 22,000 in the three counties. The Six CBOs have committed to each raise at least Kshs 100,000 as part of the Kshs 5 million to be used to offer technical and vocational training for 50 beneficiaries from Child headed households. They have also been instrumental identifying children who are heading their households as they live in their communities.
The groups are working towards different activities to raise the funds for selected beneficiaries who will be enrolled in technical colleges in 2017. Speaking during the planning meeting, Yetu Director Rosemary Mutunkei said that the campaign offers local residents an opportunity to be part of the solution rather than waiting for interventions from international organizations. Omega Foundation CEO, Mr Wilfred Owour praised the strong local networks established by the organization, which have been able to rally the support of residents and the business community towards the campaign.