It has a vision to see a free Kenyan society without inequalities of extreme poverty, destitution, deprivation or austerity. Its mission is to respond to the needs of the communities and those of their children with a primary objective of improving the quality of life of those in need.
Background information Learning and Development Kenya (LDK) is a national non-governmental, non-profit, non-sectarian development organization founded in June 1998 and officially registered with the NGO Co-ordination Bureau as a national NGO on September 9, 1999 via registration number OP. 218/051/98202/1207. When LDK was founded 8 years ago it set out the following objectives as a basis for its work with the poor communities in Kenya: To rehabilitate street children; to support education for poor children; to promote education of girls; to support a conducive learning environment; to empower women through skills training and issuance of revolving loans; to create HIV/AIDS awareness; to support youth with technical skills training; and to provide shelter and a decent living standard to orphaned children. Since it was founded, LDK has committed itself to working with those who are extremely poor, vulnerable and marginalized, especially children, youth and women. In addressing their present needs LDK aims to restore hope in the children and help them achieve a future of their dreams. We aim to play a significant role in empowering women through capacity building and provision of start up loans for small businesses. Between 1998 and 2004 LDK supported education (a basic need) for needy children in 8 partner schools in 5 districts within semi-arid areas in Kenya. Through this support the children built a solid foundation that gave them skills to face the challenging future with confidence, while remaining responsible citizens of Kenya. Education, we envisioned, would guarantee the children a better life and less poverty in the future not only in their own lives but in the lives of many other people within their respective communities. To be much more effective and to offer programs with the most positive impact to the communities, LDK phased out its programs in the semi-arid areas due to drastic reduction in funding. Without compromising its initial objectives, LDK has concentrated on serving the urban poor, with a special focus on Rhonda slums, through its Virginia Buena Memorial Center for the Needy. The phase out resulted in a major reduction in operating costs and the limited financial resources at our disposal are now efficiently used to meet the needs of those that we serve. We operate the following programs: Education: We started with 32 children in 2000 when we officially opened our doors for orphans and vulnerable children in Rhonda slums. Currently we have enrolled 650 orphans and other vulnerable children in the program and with the help of both our partners in Germany and the UK (see links below) and individual sponsors, we are able to provide the children with quality education. We have had a nursery school for baby, middle and top classes since 2000. In January 2006 we started our own primary school to be able to provide not just education but quality education to these needy children. The school now has classes one to three. In April 2006 we opened a library in Nakuru, again to serve these children that the society for some reason or another has neglected to care for. This neglect is mainly due to the negative impact that came as a result of HIV/AIDS, overburdening the already impoverished families. Feeding Program Again, it would not have been possible to even imagine providing a warm meal to 650 children every school day would it not have been for the generous support received from individual donors who share a meal of 60 euros with children at our center whenever they are celebrating an event or a birthday for themselves, relatives or friends. All they have asked from us is to email them photos taken while the children are praying for them. We do this gladly and even write a ?thank you? board message for the donor that accompanies the photos via email. We feel so honored for the trust individuals around the world have continued to have in us and we promise to utilize each and every cent to feed the hungry children. Between January and May 2006 LDK responded to the government?s appeal when famine was declared a national disaster by the Kenyan President, threatening the lives of over 3.5 million Kenyans. LDK appealed for help from its donors and through our partner in Germany, Leben und Lernen in Kenia e.V., we received overwhelming support from individual donors that enabled us to feed over 2,000 children a warm meal every day. HIV/AIDS Since 2000 LDK has continued to create awareness of HIV/AIDS especially among youth. In collaboration with other organizations like The Ark Foundation of Africa and the Peer Education Program of Los Angeles, LDK has been able to organize Teen Peer and Train the Trainer training awareness programs not only for the youth but for the entire Rhonda community. In addition to the awareness program, LDK has a home that currently provides shelter, food, medical care and quality education to 110 orphans. The children are from all corners of the country and LDK is very grateful to all those that are helping us achieve this noble cause aimed at making a positive difference in the lives of the children that deserve support. We have promised regular communication between a child in our program and his/her sponsor. A yearly annual report (an official thank you note from the Director, a ?thank you? letter from the child, a progress school and health report and a child?s current photo) is mailed directly from our office in Nakuru to individual sponsors wherever they are located in the world. Micro credit project The objective of this project has been to empower poor urban women through capacity building and provision of interest-free revolving loans to enable them to start small businesses and be able to supplement family income. In the process, they are able to improve their family?s standard of living. Since 2003, when we gave out our first revolving loans, we have been able to reach 85 households who work in groups and have only pleasant words to say about the benefits so far received through the program. They confirm that the project has enabled many of them to start some businesses that they would otherwise have not and that they can comfortably report on an improved standard of living as they repay the loans through their respective groups. Unfortunately it is only 85 out of 424 households that we have been able to advance funds to due limited funding at our disposal. Urgent appeal Please consider supporting the work of LDK. We may not be able to prevent this world from being a world in which children are tortured (when they go without a meal a day), but we can play our part within our means to reduce the number of tortured children. And if you can help us do this, you will have played your noble part in your lifetime. We are open and always looking for help ? Donations, Volunteers and Partners in other countries where we don?t have a presence. For tax deductible receipts those in Germany and the UK can donate through our partners. Simply mention the donation is to assist the work of Learning and Development Kenya. We are urgently looking for partners in other countries to assist us receive funds for the project. Any registered organization with charitable status willing to help can reach us through the address bellow. Please also check our website for additional information.