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Co-operatives in Kenya launch initiative targeting 500,000 vulnerable households By Linda Karimi


The co-operative movement in Kenya launched an initiative to respond to the Covid-19 pandemic through provision of relief to vulnerable families whose income has been disrupted, and to support the reconstruction of the sector. Through relief supplies the initiative is ambitious to cushion 500,000 vulnerable households in the country while boosting Government efforts against the Coronavirus pandemic. Dubbed ‘Co-ops care’, the initiative is spearheaded by a newly established Co-operative Coronavirus Response Committee (CCRC) whose mandate includes mobilization of resources from the co-operative sector. The committee has raised over 112,602 USD. More than 68 co-operative societies and 26 individual co-operators have made their contributions. Employees from the Kenya Union of Savings and Credit Co-operatives (KUSCCO) made a consolidated contribution of 575 USD. The initial targeted 5,000 households have been processed and each household has been given a shopping voucher from a local supermarket to redeem a ‘Covid 19 Co-op kit’ which comprises of 5kgs of maize flour, a litre of cooking oil, 2 kgs of beans, bar soap and four (4) face masks.




In a letter addressed to all co-operatives, the Commissioner for Co-operative Development noted that the pandemic called for concerted efforts by all stakeholders to alleviate its effect on vulnerable co-operators.  The National Government has made an appeal for local fundraising to address this pandemic. There is need for the sector to organize itself in support of and to compliment the Government’s efforts to assist vulnerable communities affected by this pandemic,Mr. Njang’ombe told co-operatives.




Among its other roles, the committee will coordinate support to the beneficiaries in collaboration with the National Emergency Response Committee as well as disseminating information and training to co-operative members as informed by the Ministry of Health.




In addition, the committee will develop post Covid-19 pandemic coping mechanism through structured lobbying and advocacy to the Government and commission research on the impact of the pandemic on the co-operative sector. CCRC will develop a monitoring and evaluation plan to collect, collate, measure and generate reports for strategic appraisal of the assignment.


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