Villagers in Kenya are ready to welcome expedition volunteers.

Read: Latest news from Kenya

Africa leaps into your senses. There is nothing subtle about Africa. Since 1993 CHOICE Humanitarian co-founder Jim Mayfield has made 17 trips to Kenya. “Each time I go is the like the first,” says Mayfield, “Africa is addictive. Africa gets in your blood.” Africa is where the first heartbeat of the human race began. And that’s where the true wonder of Africa still lies – in it’s people.

Unhappily, a huge percentage of Africans live in poverty. CHOICE Humanitarian concentrates efforts in two highly impoverished areas, the Kwale and Kinango districts located in the Coast Province of Kenya in East Africa. In the Kwale area, one recent report shows that 32 percent of the population is classified as ‘food insecure’ while 40% of the population is in ‘absolute poverty’. Poor healthcare and poverty in the Kinango district result in one of the highest infant mortality rates in the country.

Despite wide divisions in tribal heritage and religious beliefs the Harambee (‘pull together’ – Kenya national motto) spirit has resulted in amazing progress for thousands of villagers where CHOICE Humanitarian works. In Kenya, a major tool in the fight against poverty is education. Schools offer inroads to the community. Improved schools and education systems translate to positive changes in the village. Many villages choose to begin overall village improvement with classroom construction. Schools are not only centers of learning but gathering places where communities can come together to discuss common goals and make plans for improved lives.

Along with numerous school and classroom construction projects, women’s micro credit programs, water and sanitation projects, basic healthcare training, and long-range sustainable economic strategies such as the
Marikani Dairy Cooperative are all encompassed in CHOICE Humanitarian involvement in Kenya. A dedicated staff headed by Dr. Rita Lugogo (Link to Rita bio on Staff Pages) maintains a ‘hands-onapproach in teaching and mentoring villagers and village leaders to ensure success in mutually agreed upon projects and objectives.

Latest news from Kenya
CHOICE Expedition to Kenya
CHOICE Humanitarian Kenya Project Region - Google Maps
CHOICE Critical Needs in Kenya

All dressed up for village celebration.

CHOICE - Kenya by the Numbers

  • Villages where CHOICE has worked: 74
  • Kenyans directly impacted by CHOICE: 115,000
  • Kenyans indirectly impacted by CHOICE: 259,000

Village Progress at a Glance - Kenya

  • The Mariakani Dairy Cooperative processing plant is now in operation demonstrating the largest potential for economic development in the multi-village district
  • Aloe Vera processing turns into profits for Mulunguni and Chanzou
  • Egu Water project is moving ahead leveraging of significant outside resources to complete Phase II of the community water system
  • Village health care worker training program is launched in Kenya by Dr. James Mayfield
  • Eleven Community Based Organizations (CBO's) have been trained and are now united into ONE council!
  • Dr. Rita Lugogo and her staff along with CHOICE Humanitarian Board member Louis Pope hosted the first CHOICE Humanitarian World Conference. First time in Kenya!
  • Staff training complete in Grassknowlogy! in both Kenya and Nepal 'Grassknowlogy' is videographer Rebekah Sosa's term for teaching the grassroots fundamentals of producing short videos and video training tools. Sosa has trained CHOICE staff in Kenya, Nepal and other countries.
  • Bio gas technology introduced in Kenya at CHOICE world conference in July 2010

Egu Water project

Egu, Kenya  –  Because of the highly motivated leadership in this small village, they have presented their vision to other nearby villages. Consensus and support is being developed with politicians and NGOs to bring piped water from the mainline pipe that carries water from Mt. Kilimanjaro to Mombasa.

Aloe Vera - More than Skin Deep

Coast Province, Kenya  –  Aloe Vera plants grow wild all around many CHOICE villages in Kenya. Until recently these plants were just seen as part of the landscape. But with CHOICE training, the villages of Mulunguni and Chanzou are turning these plants into profit. Oil from these plants is extracted by hand and turned into marketable soap and lotion products. Each project member contributes 20 shillings ($0.25) a month to help finance the project. Profits are shared among members.

Mariakani Dairy Co-operative

Mariakani, Kenya  –  With countless hours of work and support from CHOICE Humanitarian, the long anticipated Mariakani milk processing plant is now in production! The Mariakani Dairy Cooperative was established in 2007 to take over the stalled operations of the Mariakani dairy production plant. Along with local government, outside investors, partner NGO's and local farmers, CHOICE Humanitarian spearheaded the effort to bring the project to life. Milk is now being purchased from farmers and turned into dairy products for sale. The Mariakani co-op is an incredible example of micro-industry which benefits the entire community and will bring long-term sustainable economic benefits to thousands of people for many years.