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Provide Medical Support for HIV/AIDS Orphans

Help provide adequate healthcare and first aid to hundreds of orphans in the Kawangware slum of Nairobi, Kenya.

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Provide Medical Support for HIV/AIDS Orphans

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Most orphaned children who attend our school live in terrible poverty and dirty conditions. Very few have access to regular medical support, vaccinations, first aid, or other medical check-ups. They face constant dangers from diseases that have been long ago eliminated in richer countries.

Your support in this project can bring much needed regular check-ups for the children along with vaccinations, important medicine and other medical needs. This program is very important and saves lives every day in our school of over 200 orphaned children.

  • Full Project Summary

    For about $2 per child, per month ($400 Canadian per month), we can provide adequate healthcare for over 200 orphaned children and staff in the Kawangware slum of Nairobi, Kenya.

    Many illnesses and diseases in the slums begin small, and can be easily managed with minor medical care if attended to immediately. The most common illnesses are “jiggers”, lice and ticks, diarrhea, dehydration, malaria, cholera, typhoid, tuberculosis, pneumonia, influenza and more. 

    Although these illnesses start out small, limited resources or poor access to proper healthcare can magnify their symptoms.  Almost all of these illnesses can quickly become life-threatening, and some children under our care have died in instances where we could not respond quickly enough or their illness had progressed too far before coming to our attention. You can help to directly prevent the illness (and even the death) of many children.

    Access to near-by medical support is critical for the ongoing health of the children, along with regular medical check ups, inspection and repair of sanitation services, clean food and water, and access to proper medicines and vaccines.

    Our medical program is ongoing and has saved the lives of countless children. Their medical needs arise regularly and so their costs are continually pressing.

  • Information for Educators

    Many illnesses and diseases in the slums begin small, and can be easily managed with minor medical care if attended to immediately. The most common illnesses are “jiggers” (see explanation below), lice and ticks, diarrhea, dehydration, malaria, cholera, typhoid, polio, tuberculosis, meningitis, pneumonia, influenza and more. 

    Although these illnesses start out small, limited resources or poor access to proper healthcare can magnify their symptoms. Most of these illnesses, if untreated, will quickly cause death. Therefore, you can help to directly prevent the illness (and even death) of many children. Almost all of these illness can quickly become life-threatening, and some children under our care have died in instances where we could not respond quickly enough or their illness had progressed too far before coming to our attention.

    “Jiggers” are small parasites that live in the soil, particularly in areas like the slum where animals like goats and pigs walk around freely. When the soil is disturbed they can surface and imbed in the soles of the children, who are often barefooted. It is very painful and can cause complete crippling of the feet if it goes untreated. Once the parasite burrows into the foot they migrate to the toe where they lay eggs that hatch. This creates enormous discomfort for the children and they are often seen in class “jiggling” their toes - hence the name “jiggers” given to the parasite.

    Diarrhea is most commonly caused by consumption of dirty, parasitic water or food.  It can also be caused by malnutrition.  This can further cause severe dehydration and can result in death quite rapidly if it goes untreated.

    Malaria is also very common in Kenya and can be treated easily if recognised quickly. Almost every man, woman and child has suffered malaria at least once. It is commonly mistaken and treated as a flu but can later lead to severe anemia, organ damage, convulsions, coma and even death.

    Almost 90% of deaths due to malaria occur in south-Saharan Africa (including Kenya), mostly among young children. Malaria kills an African child every 30 seconds. Many children who survive an episode of severe malaria may suffer from learning impairments or brain damage. Pregnant women and their unborn children are also particularly vulnerable to malaria, which is a major cause of prenatal mortality, low birth weight and maternal anemia.

    Access to near-by medical support is critical for the ongoing health of the children, along with regular medical check ups, inspection and repair of sanitation services, clean food and water, and access to proper medicines and vaccines.

    Statistics show:

    - In sub-Saharan Africa, malaria affects mostly young children, with almost 3,000 dying every day - 20% of all deaths in children under 5 years of age.

    - An estimated one million people in Africa die from malaria each year, 90% of these deaths occur in sub-Saharan Africa.

    - Malaria kills an African child every 30 seconds.

    - 300 to 500 million clinical cases of malaria are documented each year worldwide.

    Given that the living conditions are so extremely poor in the slum areas, the children suffer an ongoing risk to their health from hundreds of potential or fatal illnesses. This program is the single most life-saving program that we currently operate. Its absence, at one time, was responsible for the deaths of many of our children.

    We also provide hospitalisation and more advanced medical care to those few individuals who have more serious medical conditions. Children who have more serious ailments are often left to die by the guardians who are simply too poor to pay hospital fees.

    For an example of how we saved the life of one of our orphaned girls named Michelle, please view the short 2-minute video above titled “Michelle”. In her case, a small injury to her hip became very infected. By the time that the infection came to our attention it had already spread across her entire upper leg region, with areas of necrotic or dying flesh. A group of passing doctors were brought in to examine her and they debrided the area (cleaned away the dead flesh) and treated the infection. Our volunteer helpers stayed with Michelle for three months and changed her bandages daily, which was a very painful exercise. Unfortunately, the wound covered too much area and would simply not heal over. She faced amputation of her leg - a treatment that would have surely killed her due to her depleted health condition. Instead, we paid for a very expensive hospitalisation and a costly skin graft. Within a month, and with increased nutrition, Michelle healed completely and was back playing skip rope with the girls within a few months. A very positive outcome!

  • Project Outcome

    With the ability to medically treat these illnesses immediately with antibiotics or even preventative medication it can drastically increase not only their quality of life but their chance of survival.

This Project

  • Project Facts

    • Lives Affected200
    • Total Cost$ 400
    • Amount Raised To Date$ 0
    • Percent Complete0 %
    • CountryKenya
  • 1
    Map and Location

  • Contact Info

    co-managing director
    Todd Lorentz

    co-managing director
    Cristelle Audet

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