The Journey of a KURA Opportunity Kit

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I would like to share with our readers, donors and supporters what happens when $25 is donated towards a KURA Opportunity Kit for a girl in northern Kenya.

The journey begins at the AFRIpads Company in Uganda. They are a social enterprise that specializes in the local manufacture and global supply of reusable sanitary pads as a cost-effective menstrual hygiene solution for  millions of women and girls worldwide. They also employ 90% women. (Photo credit @AFRIpads)

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To date KURA has purchased and delivered 4,800 AFRIpads kits to girls and women in northern Kenya.

Our target communities have given us very positive feedback on this product. It has also been a joy working with this company who in the last seven years has delivered us a well made comfortable product in a consistent and timely manner. Thank you for your good work AFRIpads!

Once the AFRIpads arrive in Nairobi they are processed and sent 200 km north to the Nanyuki G4S.

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Here they are picked up and await the next phase of their journey to northern Kenya.

 

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Once in Nanyuki, soaps and underwear are purchased. The underwear and soaps are now ready to be loaded into the vehicle for the next leg of the trip to Marsabit County.

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The vehicle is now packed with AFripads kits, underwear and soaps for our 337 km journey from Nanyuki to Marsabit County in northern Kenya. Enough water has been purchased to sustain us during our time here and on this particular trip we have packed donated paper for the schools receiving the kits.

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Heading north from Nanyuki, the Opportunity kit journey continues…a short delay for a pedestrian. If all goes well, the kits should arrive at their next destination in Korr in about 4 hours.

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As a precaution, a security guard is picked up in Samburu as we head into a less secure region. The tarmac ends so the next few hours travel is on roads like this. Destination…Korr.

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From Uganda, Nairobi, Nanyuki and now Korr, KURA’s Opportunity kits have made it to northern Kenya!

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In Korr the boxes of AFRIpads are unloaded from the vehicle. Soon they will be distributed along with underwear and soaps to various schools and villages in Marsabit County, Kenya.

Marsabit County covers an area twice the size of New England with travel conditions that can prove challenging in this extremely remote area of the world.

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As I said travel can prove very difficult in northern Kenya and getting the kits to the schools can be challenging to say the least! Drought is a huge problem in this area and this year in particular. However, when it does rain, the roads can become impassable very quickly. Here were are stuck for several hours in the desert.

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We are stuck in the middle of the Kaisut desert in northern Kenya with no help in sight. The road is completely impassable but calls are made to see if someone can get to us. In the meantime I decide an SOS sign is in order. Can you guess what I used to make the sign? Yup, a combination of donkey poop, camel poop and goat poop. All I can say is you do what you need to do.

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We have been stuck now for four hours. Several people have been contacted by phone(thank God for solar chargers) and Sokotey is on the lookout for help to arrive. I am happy to say a vehicle of 15 men finally make their way to us. After much discussion on how to proceed, our vehicle is pulled out of the mud. We are no worse for the wear. I wish I could say the same thing for the vehicle.

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Today we are headed to Loiyangalani Primary School in the Turkana region of northern Kenya and we are almost there!

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As we drive along the desert road towards our destination of Loiyangalani and Loiyangalani Primary School for our delivery of kits, we are also driving along side Lake Turkana. Lake Turkana is the longest desert lake in Africa. It is also the most beautiful lake I have ever seen…jade green in color. Temperatures are reaching upwards of 110 degrees F. I am so tempted to jump in and cool off with these children in the photo. Next stop Loiyangalai Primary School!

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The students are here to greet us and we are excited to distribute KURA’s Opportunity kits along with instruction as to the use and care of the products. Our goal is to keep the girls in school. Education is everything!

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Each girl is given four reusable menstrual pads, a pair of underwear and soap along with instruction on the use and care of the pads. This kit provides each girl the opportunity to stay in school without interruption and the ability to participate in all activities without worry. Headmasters report to us it’s working. Fewer girls are missing school. Girls are performing better with many now rising to the top of their class.

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Along with the distribution of AFRIpads(reusable menstrual pads, underwear, soap, instructions on use and care), KURA provides each school with a copy of Girl Talk. Girl Talk is a book created by the AFRIpads and Lunapads Companies. It teaches young girls everything they need to know when they have their first period. The goal is to give young girls the correct information on what is happening to their bodies, how they can cope with it and that it is normal, natural and beautiful. It also gives instructions on the use and care of reusable menstrual pads.Thank you @afripads @lunapads for this user friendly, informative booklet.

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These smiles say it all! KURA’s Opportunity kits will last them a year or more, keep them in school and allow them to participate in all activities without worry.

Thank you to our donors and supporters who have made this delivery and our 31 previous school deliveries possible. The donation of these simple products are making a difference in the lives of these girls who otherwise would not have access to such things.We have a long way to go with one 100 more schools in this region waiting for help from us.

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From Kampala, Uganda to Nairobi, Kenya then onto Nanyuki, Korr and our final destination of Loiyangalani Kenya located near the border of Ethiopia, we have covered a lot of ground…1,621.6 kilometers to be exact.

I hope sharing the journey of just one of our Opportunity kit deliveries gives you a better understanding of our work and what it takes to get these products to remote areas of northern Kenya.

KURA but more importantly the girls in Kenya wish to thank our donors and supporters who without you, these deliveries would not be possible. YOU ARE MAKING A DIFFERENCE.

Please visit kuraproject.org if you wish to make an online donation towards our pad program. Remember a little goes a long way. Just $25 will purchase a kit that will last a girl a year or more.  If you wish to write a check, please make it out to KURA, and mail it to : P.O. box 505, Manchester, VT 05254

Hadi wakati mwingine (Until next time)

 

 



 

 

 

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KURA Project’s Spring Fling – June 8, 2017

These beautiful smiles tell it all! Everyone had a fun day enjoying time together at The Dorset Field Club in Dorset, Vermont while at the same time raising funds and awareness for menstrual hygiene products for girls in northern Kenya. We are thrilled to announce funds for 850 Opportunity kits (reusable menstrual pads, underwear and soap)  have been raised from this event.

A special thank you to Joan from fortheloveofahouse.blogspot.com who did a wonderful post about our work in northern Kenya. Her followers alone donated enough to purchase 250  kits that will keep 250 girls in school and free to participate in all activities without interruption.  Thank you, Thank you, Thank you!

The KURA team and more importantly the girls from northern Kenya benefiting from your generosity thank all our supporters, near and far, for giving them the opportunity to go through their monthly cycles with dignity and access to an uninterrupted education.

Hadi wakati mwingine