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There is drought, starvation, and poverty in Kenya. Crops have failed in the bone-dry fields. The indelible image outside the capital, on dusty roads, broken dirt-tracks and across dust-bowl fields, is one of children, mostly girls, spending large portions of their day walking miles to fetch water in plastic containers that they are carrying or transporting on the backs of almost-lame donkeys. Yet beautiful, healthy, fast-flowing rivers, with enormous untapped potential, run through the arid land and fields of dust; their precious, but unused, fresh-water flowing off and away into the Indian Ocean.
With funds to build and install turbines, River Power Pod and our Kenyan partners forming River Power Pod Team Kenya could provide locally owned and managed, accessible and sustainable hydro-power to transform the lives of so many.
With this stage of the project we plan to provide and install the first turbine while also establishing manufacturing, installation and maintenance capability at the Don Bosco Technical College in Embu. This will serve as the kernel to develop locally-owned and managed capability within Kenya to deploy turbines across the country and region - providing both fresh-water and power to those who currently do not have access to them. This capability can grow to facilitate sustainable employment for school and college leavers; it can also generate revenue to help sustain the schools and go on to provide education for children who are currently unable to access it.
We are working with CAFOD in the UK and Kenya, Caritas in Kitui and the Salesians in Nairobi and Embu to ensure that the turbines are installed in the places the local schools and communities need them and to be certain that the ownership and capability is embedded locally.
Father Maina, Director of the Don Bosco schools and technical college in Embu, says of this project:
“This project will reduce the cost of electricity and provide power to many "powerless" families. For our school, it will save us that very high electricity bill that we pay every month. That money will be used to support other poor children to study or train.
“It will improve the quality of education by giving students the opportunity to study at night. It will provide jobs for the youth, who will be manufacturing turbines and raising revenue for the school to train more needy and poor students. It will create lasting links between the UK and Kenya. This will enrich students and people from both countries.
“‘Going Green’ is the way forward - I have shared the idea with our regional Governor in Embu and he was so enthusiastic about it. ... A few days ago he called me again expressing his desire to have RPP working in our county.
“RPP is a very noble project that will save lives by providing “water to the thirsty”, providing food to the families, and improving greatly the financial status of families so that they will be able to send their children to school.”
We now need to raise funds to install turbines, to help transform communities and secure the futures of people such as Don Bosco Embu pupils and students.
Individuals, communities, schools, colleges and businesses in better circumstances could ‘Sponsor a Pod’; transforming the lives of people who are struggling to survive in Kenya – Right now!
£57,500 is a heck of a lot of money but every donation, no matter how small, helps us on our way to our target.
• By donating £10.00 you would enable us to buy 50 of the bolts we need to install the turbine.
• Donating the price of a regular coffee, £2.25, would mean we could buy 50 of the nuts we need.
• The price of a posh coffee, £3.70, could cover a local Welder's wages for a day to help build the mooring installation kit.
You can donate online using this page, or simply text the code RRPA99 followed by the amount (e.g. RPPA99 £5) to 70070.
It’s time to make a real difference; it’s time to become part of River Power Pod Team Kenya.
Thank you again for sparing the time to read our story; you can keep up to date with our activities at our Facebook page @RiverPowerPodAfricaProject, on Twitter @RiverPowerPodAP and on the Africa Project page at our website www.fern-flowing-power.com.
We will share the smiles, singing and dancing that your donation helps to create!