Our Affiliated Project: The Dandora Community Centre in Nairobi, Kenya

 

Quick facts about the Dandora Community Centre:

  • Ages served: Children of all ages attend the community center. Sponsored children typically range in age from 5 to 18 years.
  • Average enrollment:  400 children (for the center’s educational programs)
  • Facility description: The community center is part of a compound that includes a multipurpose hall with a capacity to seat 300, a daycare center, classrooms, offices, a kitchen and small workshops.
  • Curriculum: The community center’s educational programs teach core academic subjects including English for nursery school through eighth grade levels.
  • Academic year: In Kenya, the school year typically begins in January and ends in November. It is split into three sessions marked by a two-week break in April and another two-week break in August.
  • Nutrition: Children receive a nutritious meal at the center each day.
  • Community outreach: Over a thousand people rely upon the Dandora Community Centre each day for nourishment, medical care and the various outreach programs that the center offers.

Located in the Great Lakes region of eastern Africa, Kenya is known for its fertile highlands, grassy savannahs, wildlife and its namesake peak, Mt. Kenya. Its economy relies heavily upon agriculture and tourism. Kenya is also a cradle of civilization, rich in cultural heritage and diversity. The nation’s wealth of natural beauty, resources, and culture, however, belie the poverty in which most of its residents live. Tragically, destitution and weak government institutions permit frequent violations of human rights. Kenya is also plagued by a severe shortage of healthcare workers, which contributes to lower life expectancies, high infant mortality rates and widespread preventable disease. The sprawling nation’s capital is no exception to these maladies. Plagued by extreme poverty, disease and crime, Nairobi is home to thousands of children suffering from malnutrition, abuse and neglect.

For this reason, the Dandora Community Centre serves as a safe haven and a beacon of hope. Established in the Dandora public housing projects and operated by the Presbyterian Church of East Africa, the center’s mission is to serve the nearly 7,000 residents of this overcrowded slum neighborhood. The community center’s dedicated staff instills moral and spiritual values by way of a well-rounded education while providing for such basic needs as nutritious food and medical care. In this way, the center gives these deserving children the opportunity to break the cycle of poverty and rise above the difficult socioeconomic circumstances from which they come.