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Meet a young Kenyan woman who is behind a program to feed 1,200 needy kids

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“I see myself as a young person who has the responsibility and the power to create the world I want to see in ten years. I do not take that responsibility lightly.” 
-Wawira Njiru, founder of Food 4 Education

Wawira’s story began with a single realization, “What did I do to deserve a better life than other kids around me?” While she grew up with comfort and three meals a day, there were those in her community of Ruiru, Kenya who didn’t have access to nutritious food or quality education. This realization sparked a sense of injustice and set Wawira’s feet on a path towards being an advocate for vulnerable children in her community.

After receiving a scholarship from the University of South Australia, Wawira connected with one of World Vision Australia’s advocacy groups while studying nutrition and food science at the university. There, she learned the different ways World Vision works to protect vulnerable children by looking out for their well-being and development, advocating for their rights, and providing for immediate needs, like food assistance. After graduating, she returned home and founded Food 4 Education.

26% of Kenya’s children are stunted and 40% are malnourished. “We want to bridge that gap by providing healthy and nutritious food for children so they can stay in school and learn,” shared Wawira. Hunger doesn’t just affect how we learn or pay attention in school – it also affects how well our brain works or develops. A healthy brain uses 20% of your body’s energy, and energy comes from nutritious food. Food 4 Education provides protein-based meals, which promote healthy development for 1,200 school children a day.

“Food 4 Education levels the playing field between children who have grown up in a privileged home and those who have to decide whether to go to school or beg for food that day.” -Wawira

Food 4 Education helps subsidize the costs of school meals through their local local restaurant and delivery service, Double Portion. “We started this business because we saw a niche,” shared Wawira. Double Portion provides affordable nutritious meals for the community. “People come in and will be eating like a normal restaurant but the profits will be going to subsidized meals for vulnerable children.”

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Kenya has seen very little rain in recent years, and as a result is in severe drought. This drought has made food more expensive and less accessible for everyone, but especially affects children in impoverished and rural communities. In many cases, the meal that Food 4 Education serves is the only meal children will get to eat that whole day. Wawira hopes that within the next ten years, Food 4 Education will be serving 1 million school lunches a day.

Extraordinary movements of change often begin with just a single reflection and a simple step forward. A hungerfree world is made possible through world changers like Wawira, and each individual decision to empathize and respond. 

To learn more about on Food 4 Education and how they are helping to make a HungerFree world, visit their website.

In Kenya and across Africa, 34 million people are experiencing the worst humanitarian crisis in decades due to drought, famine and conflict. That’s nearly the entire population of Canada. 

We need your help to bring some much needed attention to the worst humanitarian crisis in decades. Help us create a #HungerFree world. Take action at worldvision.ca/hungerfree or by sharing on social media.

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Africa

US warns Kenyans over fake marriages, says they won’t be allowed to fly out

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The US embassy in Nairobi on Monday issued a warning to Kenyans getting duped into fake marriages to acquire a visa.

Through their official social media pages, the embassy advised caution in the event somebody offers to get you a green card using dubious means.

“Has anyone ever told you they can get a green card for you? Don’t believe them! They are lying and just trying to steal your money. Don’t believe them when they say you can have a fake marriage and still get your green card.

“If you apply with a fake marriage, you will get caught and you will not get your green card. You will become permanently ineligible to ever go to the United States, and you will never be able to get a U.S. visa or a green card,” the embassy warned.

Visa denied FILE/PHOTO

Kenyans were further urged to apply for a visa or the green card lottery by themselves.

The statement conveyed: “You don’t need to use a fixer to apply for the diversity visa or green card lottery. You can do it yourself and pay the required fee.”

The embassy stated that one should only apply through the Embassy’s official website.

“If you know about anyone promising they can get a green card for you if you enter into a fake marriage, go to the police and report them. You should also report them to the U.S. Embassy,” the statement concluded.

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Earlier last week, US Ambassador to Kenya Robert Godec announced that the United States government was gearing up to fight fake news in Kenya adding that it had eroded confidence in Kenya’s real news media.

Speaking during an interview, Godec stated: “Fake news is being weaponized. It’s undermining democracy in Kenya.”

President Uhuru Kenyatta with US Secretary of Transport Anthony Foxx (C) and Ambassador Robert Godec when he led a US business delegation to State House, Nairobi on June 25, 2015. PHOTO | PSCU

He further remarked: “We’re not asking them to believe any particular thing. We’re just urging people not to take everything they see on their phone via WhatsApp as the truth because it may not be.”

Source -Kenyans.co.ke

 

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VIDEO: Former Kenya’s head of Civil Service Francis Kimemia speaks to VOA

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BY BMJ MURIITHI

Former Kenya’s head of Civil Service and Secretary to the Cabinet who is the current governor of Nyandarua County, Francis Kimemia, has told the Voice of America (VOA) that contrary to a position taken by some naysayers, the devolved system of government is fast transforming Kenya in a myriad ways.

During an interview at VOA’s headquarters in Washington DC Thursday, Kimemia hailed the “good relations between Kenya and the US,” as well as the assistance extended by the latter over the years to the East African nation in support of good governance.

“I am very proud of the role I played in ensuring that the constitution was changed to pave way for the county system of governance,” he said. Kimemia also spoke on several topical issues, including Corruption, national reconciliation and eviction of Kenyans from Mau Forest, Kibera and other areas.

Earlier in the day, he was a guest at an online live-streaming event organised by Voice of America’s Student Union, an online community and news site for international students who study or wish to study in the United States.

Kimemia was among Kenyan Governors, their deputies and Senators who attended this year’s annual United States National Governors Association (NGA) Summer session in Santa Fe, New Mexico.

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Watch the Full interview here:

23  Kenyan governors, several senators and other government officials joined the general secretary of German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s ruling party, the Chinese and Japanese ambassadors to the United States, and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s national security adviser, who also attended the event.

International leaders talked about the relationship between sub-national governments and the federal government. Speakers included the governor of Kenya’s Turkana County, Josphat Nanok – who is also the Chairman og Council of Governors in Kenya, as well  the general secretary of Germany’s Christian Democratic Party.

NGA is an organization consisting of the Governors of the states, territories and commonwealths of the United States which acts as a collective voice for Governors on matters of national policy, as well as allowing governors to share best practices and coordinate inter-state initiatives.

 

Former head of Kenyan Civil Service and Secretary to the Cabinet, who is the current Governor, Nyandarua County, Francis Kimemia during the interview at VOA Studios in Washington DC. PHOTO/VOA

This year’s attendees held discussions on international development and diplomacy.

Later, the Council of Governors Peace Committee held  a meeting with the National Democratic Institute in Washington DC, where they discussed possible areas of partnerships and support for peace and reconciliation efforts.

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The Kenyan delegation also visited several US Cities, including Dallas, Texas, where a number of governors attended a Diaspora Conference organized by Kenya Diaspora Advisory Council.

 Voice of America is the U.S.’s largest international broadcaster, reaching 236.8 million people weekly in more than 40 languages. For more information, you can visit our website.

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Africa

Kenyan scientist George Njoroge receives another prestigious award in US

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A US-based Kenyan research scientist has been honoured at a banquet in New York for his discoveries of drugs used to treat cancer and other life-threatening diseases.

Dr George Njoroge was presented with a “pioneer award” from Face2Face Africa, a pan-Africa media company, for his sustained impact on science and medicine.

The 64-year-old Kiambu native holds more than 100 patents for his work on cancer and immunology.

Currently a senior research fellow at the global pharmaceutical company Eli Lilly, Mr Njoroge plans to move next year to Naivasha, where he is establishing a biotechnology institute.

He said he hopes to attract 100 doctoral degree-holders from around the world to take part in the institute’s work on malaria, Aids, diabetes and cancer.

“Africa has to step up the plate and get involved by participating in the global scientific platform,” Mr Njoroge said in accepting the Face2Face Africa award on Saturday.

“We cannot afford to be left behind. In Africa, we have great brains and abundance of resources — we just need to embrace the power of biotechnology.”

He added in an interview that the latest of his numerous awards is particularly meaningful because it specifically honours persons of African origin.

Dr Njoroge credits his now-deceased mother, Alice Nyaucha, for having inspired his interest in science through her work as a practitioner of herbal medicine.

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Dr Njoroge received his undergraduate degree from the University of Nairobi and earned a PhD in organic chemistry at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, Ohio.

He is married to Esther Nyambura, who works at Eli Lilly as an accountant. The couple have two adult children, both of whom are studying for medical degrees.

-Nation.co.ke

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