Consolidated Bank of Kenya recently partnered with anti-jigger champions – Ahadi Kenya Trust – to launch a campaign aimed at eliminating jiggers in Isiolo County. The campaign dubbed ‘Usafi Bora Maisha Bora’ included not only having more than 300 individuals undergo treatment for this preventable disease, but also, will saw distribution of shoes to at least five schools at Isiolo Stadium on Saturday 23 August 2014.
After hearing about the plight of the jigger infested communities across Kenya, Consolidated Bank presented a cheque of Ksh.890,000 to Ahadi Kenya Trust on 8th July 2014 in support of their cause. The funds were instrumental in preparations for the Isiolo exercise which was attended by over 3000 participants that consisted of volunteers from the Bank, Ahadi Kenya Trust team, community leaders and the local community. It was officiated by 1st Lady, Isiolo County, Her Excellency Madina Godana.
Speaking about the campaign, Consolidated Bank’s Board Chairman Dr. Benson Ateng said, “Consolidated Bank is keen to preserve and promote human values as well as the social and cultural value systems within our communities. This is what drives our commitment to partner with organizations like Ahadi Trust, a remarkable organization led by a visionary, Dr. Stanley Kamau, who has inspired thousands of people across the world to join him in his mission to eradicate poverty in our communities brought about by a small creature called a jigger.”
The Ahadi Kenya Trust vision started in 2007, when Dr. Kamau realized the impact of jigger infestation and its direct link to poverty within his community. Ahadi Kenya Trust has reached over 300,000 people through its treatment programs and has fumigated over 15,000 homes to date. The NGO has maintained its razor-sharp focus on jigger eradication by employing innovative jigger eradication strategies primarily aimed at creating awareness on the jigger menace across East Africa as well as setting up help centers to provide treatment, medication, rehabilitation and fumigation services.
Through campaigns such as the Usafi Bora Maisha Bora initiative in Isiolo, Ahadi Kenya Trust has leveraged the support of partners like Consolidated Bank to distribute 23,000 pairs of shoes, clothing to schools and communities in an effort to help with rehabilitation of the children who had previously dropped out of school as result of jigger infestation.
“With such a track record in just 7 years, it was only natural for the Bank to join hands with Ahadi Kenya Trust to further enhance its dream of achieving a jigger free society,” remarked Consolidated Bank’s Ag. CEO Japheth Kisilu.
According to Dr. Stanley Kamau founder of Ahadi Kenya Trust, “It is still of great concern to us that there is no comprehensive survey that has been carried out to date on the prevalence of jigger infestation. Through our own efforts we have established that there are over 2.6 million jigger infested Kenyans whom we have registered, this is a clear sign that many people have been suffering from jigger infestation in silence. We urge the Government to continue working with us to generate an all-inclusive report on the disease.”
“We are committed to partner with Ahadi Kenya Trust in the long-term; our sponsorship of today’s anti-jigger camp is testament of our efforts to work with Ahadi in restoring the lives of these children as well offer hope for a better future for their families,” added Mr Kisilu.
Dr. Kamau concluded saying, “With over 1.7million children in Kenya that suffer the plight of jiggers, our work is far from done; I thank Consolidated Bank for partnering with us in this initiative and continue to urge even more individuals, County Governments and corporates alike to join Ahadi Kenya in this initiative aimed at restoring dignity amongst our fellow Kenyans.”