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KEDHAP works with marginalized and vulnerable people in rural western Kenya, almost all of them impoverished farmers making less than a dollar per day, scratching their living from a small plot of exhausted land.  About 20% are living with HIV/AIDS, and that number is increasing. KEDHAP sponsors a broad range of services: education assistance, empowerment of girls and women, health care and counselling for people living with HIV/AIDS, income-generating activities, improved farming practices, and peacemaking and conflict resolution.  KEDHAP’s goal is to help people find hope and a future where once they had only despair.

What does KEDHAP do?

Assistance for Schools:

Water tank and students

  • KEDHAP provides clean water by rainwater collection and storage tanks.
  • KEDHAP provides textbooks to be shared among high-school students, few of whose families could afford to buy them.
  • Primary school is free in Kenya; high school is not.  KEDHAP pays school fees for qualified orphans and other vulnerable students, enabling them to attend high school.


Enabling girls to stay in school:

Receiving feminine pads

Many young girls from poor families are forced to drop out of school when they reach puberty, because in school they cannot cope with their monthly periods.  These girls are often forced into arranged marriages soon after puberty and long before they are ready. They lose their chance for education and their prospects for anything other than child bearing and manual labor.

  • KEDHAP provides sanitary supplies every month to vulnerable girls, serving almost 3000 girls in about 50 schools.
  • KEDHAP provides special instruction and counselling services for these very young and vulnerable girls, who may otherwise rely on family advice that repeats long-held but extremely harmful tribal traditions.


Dealing with HIV/AIDS:

Food support for AIDS patients

Rural western Kenya suffered unimaginable devastation during the great AIDS pandemic of the 1990’s and 2000’s, when a great many people died in their most productive years and left many destitute orphans, now mostly grown up.  Even now about 20% of the people are HIV positive, and in some areas this percentage is again increasing, especially among young people who no longer exercise necessary safe sex. Here are a few services:

  • KEDHAP provides foods supplements to people living with HIV/AIDS who are too weak to work, so they can tolerate the ARV drugs they require (available without cost at Government health facilities).    

    Supporting pediatric AIDS patients

  • KEDHAP gives special attention to providing adequate services for pediatric AIDS patients, whose numbers are tragically expanding.
  • KEDHAP provides transportation so people living with HIV/AIDS can attend their monthly medical appointments and receive their allocation of ARV drugs.
  • KEDHAP provides counselling and organizes small-group support for mutual care as needed.
  • KEDHAP provides teaching and counselling in the schools for teenagers regarding safe sex and protection from HIV, counteracting falsehoods traditionally circulated about AIDS, and replacing this with factual advice.


Widow milking dairy goat

Agricultural Improvement, Income Generation, and Community Support:

  • From 2008, KEDHAP has organized and implemented a large and sophisticated dairy-goat project that organizes widows into clusters of about 45 women each for mutual support and instruction.  Each widow in the cluster is given a pure-bred dairy goat. These goats produce far more milk than local goats, thus providing excellent nutrition for the widow’s young children and sometimes a small cash income as well.

    Big purebred buck


  • The project includes a breeding program, providing bucks to upgrade local stock, increasing the number of pure-bred goats and the supply of goat’s milk.  The only cost to the widow is the return of the first pure-bred doe born to her goat, so it can be given to another widow. This has proved successful and the project is now almost completely self-sufficient.


Greenhouse production

  • KEDHAP builds greenhouses with large water tanks for irrigation. These are provided to groups of farmers (primarily women) to grow market vegetables both for improved nutrition and to sell.




Classroom training

  •  KEDHAP provides crop seeds, instruction in greenhouse and organic farming, and other training to upgrade farmers’ skills.




KEDHAP Resource Centre

  • KEDHAP has its own Resource Centre, a central building which provides a small library of textbooks, reference materials, newspapers, other reading matter, and several computers for community use.  The Resource Centre has office and meeting space for KEDHAP programs. It enables classroom instruction and self-help or support groups for the many activities of KEDHAP.



Peacemaking and Conflict Resolution:  

Much of the area where KEDHAP operates is right on the border between lands occupied by the Luo and Kalenjin ethnic communities.  The people in this area have long distrusted each other; there is frequent conflict and sometimes armed violence. KEDHAP endeavours to make peace, not by trying to solve the many historical injustices but by bringing people to work together cooperatively, in the hope they may understand and appreciate each other, even becoming friends.

Some of the initiatives now underway include:

  • KEDHAP is forming new greenhouse cooperatives and new dairy-goat clusters in border areas where women from both the Kalenjin and Luo communities work together, learn from each other, and spread their new knowledge and attitudes to their families, neighbours, and friends.
  • KEDHAP is including schools in Kalenjin areas, and developing Peace & Life Clubs helping students grow with more inclusive attitudes to other tribes.
  • Hot-headed young men sometimes trigger violence and armed conflict.  They are encouraged to join informal football (soccer) teams and play with their counterparts on the other side instead of fighting each other.
  • When conflicts arise, and on a regular schedule as well, KEDHAP brings community leaders, educational leaders, and church leaders from both communities together to work out their differences and learn cooperation.  

Much more work is needed to make an appreciable dent in the old tribal attitudes.  Please see the “Our Needs” tab for more information.   

Where does KEDHAP operate?

KEDHAP began in the small, rural village of Songhor only about 3 km from the Equator and right on the (sometimes tense) border between the Luo and Kalenjin communities.  The KEDHAP Resource Centre is in Songhor. From there, KEDHAP has slowly extended its work to serve farms and villages in a roughly circular area going about 30 km from Songhor.  The area is almost all rural and mainly grows sugar cane. It stretches from the Kano Plains in the southwest to the slopes of the Nandi Hills in the northeast, a tea-growing area.

To get an idea of the geography on a computer, open Google Maps and search for “KEDHAP Resource Centre, Kenya”.  This will bring up the Songhor area and mark the Resource Centre as a reference point as you scroll around the vicinity.  Zoom out a little and you will see a dashed line just to the east of Songhor. This is the boundary between Kisumu County, whose population is mainly Luo, and Nandi County, whose population is mainly Kalenjin.  Generally, most areas north and east of Songhor are Kalenjin, while those south and west are usually Luo. With the map open, you can trace the boundary line both directions from Songhor. If you zoom further out, you will find Kisumu, the major city of western Kenya, about 65 km west of Songhor, and Nairobi, the capital and largest metropolis in Kenya, about 300 km southeast.  KEDHAP is not close to Kenya’s tourist areas.

How is KEDHAP operated?

KEDHAP started (with no money or external support) as a small volunteer group about 20 years ago, with the purpose of extending all the compassion and help they could to their neighbours who were suffering intensely from AIDS, dying on every hand, and leaving many orphans behind.  The group had two leaders, Clyde Agola and Gordon Obado, who formulated the vision and objectives that have always guided KEDHAP. Clyde was the local Mennonite bishop and Gordon was a sugar-cane farmer. Gordon especially demonstrated leadership gifts and administrative talent in coordinating KEDHAP’s activities.  He has continued to serve KEDHAP as its Program Coordinator since its very beginning, guiding KEDHAP through all the challenges it has faced and fostering its growth from serving only a small number of AIDS patients until it now supports thousands of beneficiaries in a much larger area with a great variety of programs.

  • In late 2007, KEDHAP started receiving support from a small Canadian foundation, The Jubilee Charitable Trust.  For information see the “Lead Member” tab. Jubilee Trust support helped KEDHAP enlarge its work beyond care for people living with HIV/AIDS, eventually growing to its current activities.
  • In 2010, the acronym KEDHAP came to mean Kenya Economic Development & Human Advancement Project, in acknowledgment of the broad mandate they were developing.
  • KEDHAP has always been, and continues to be, a totally indigenous Kenyan organization, receiving foreign support but always managing its own initiatives and making its own decisions.
  • KEDHAP was legally incorporated and registered in Kenya as a Charitable Foundation in 2013.  It is a legal entity with (a) its own fully independent board of directors (all Kenyans), (b) its own employees (all Kenyans), and its own constitution guaranteeing that it is not subsidiary to any other organization, and it serves all its beneficiaries without discrimination.  
  • KEDHAP keeps careful financial records, independently audited each year in compliance with international standards.
  • KEDHAP now has seven full-time employees, along with seven part-time staff, and volunteers committed to implementing KEDHAP’s programs.

    KEDHAP staff

  • Total salaries for the seven full-time employees come to about $18,500 per year, and for the seven part-timers, about $6,500 per year.  Almost all employee time is devoted to implementing the activities listed above. As the size and number of KEDHAP’s programs increase, additional staff will be needed, and will require additional salary support. 
  • KEDHAP needs substantial additional funding to meet its objectives, especially to implement new activities related to conflict resolution; see the “Our Needs” tab for more information.

Up through 2018, the basic budget of KEDHAP has been covered by The Jubilee Charitable Trust and its current donors, but this basic budget does not provide for any new or expanded programs in 2019.  Enlarging KEDHAP’s programs to meet more of the needs of its surrounding communities is the challenge we now face, and for this we need to enlist new donors.

What has been done so far on conflict resolution and expansion of KEDHAP into Kalenjin areas is really only a pilot project, showing that the methods are effective, but not yet addressing the great mass of current needs.  Only a small number of schools in Kalenjin areas have any connection with KEDHAP, but others are asking KEDHAP to come and work with them just as soon as finances are available.

KEDHAP’s greatest need, therefore, is funding to extend KEDHAP programs to additional schools, greenhouse cooperatives, and dairy-goat clusters in Kalenjin communities close to the border with Luo areas, especially those in border areas where violent conflict is most likely to break out (as it did, with multiple fatalities, in Songhor, the very centre of KEDHAP’s work, in 2016).

Here is a list of specific needs with the amount of support required for implementing each.  These are all multiple needs, in the sense that we hope and need to start sponsorship of several Kalenjin schools and other activities in 2019.

Construct a greenhouse with a large water tank for irrigation: $3600 or $300 monthly

Start and sponsor all KEDHAP programs in one secondary school: $3000 or $250 monthly

Start a new dairy-goat cluster with 45 women members: $1800 or $150 monthly

Start and sponsor KEDHAP programs in a primary school: $1500 or $125 monthly

Package of textbooks for students  to share in a secondary school: $900 or $75 monthly

Feminine products for all needy girls in one secondary school for one year: $660 or $55 monthly

Sponsor one student (orphan) to attend secondary school for one year: $660 or $55 monthly

Water tank for one school’s drinking water: $600 or $50 monthly

Feminine products for needy girls in one primary school, grades 7 and 8 only: $360 or $30 monthly

Start and sponsor a new Life & Peace club in a high school: $240 or $20 monthly

Buy one dairy goat (doe) for a widow:   $180 or $15 monthly

Support women’s group with tomato seeds for green house planting:   $75

Purchase other certified seeds for use by a group of women farmers: $70

Support one adolescent HIV patient to attend monthly clinic for one year: $50

Support one girl with monthly sanitary supplies for one year in school: $10

We have set a goal of raising $155,000 total support for KEDHAP during 2019.  This includes continuing support of over $120,000 from The Jubilee Trust and its donors, together with the challenge of finding new donors who will, together, provide gifts of at least $35,000 during 2019 for expansion of KEDHAP’s work, to be used primarily in unreached communities in Kalenjin areas adjacent to areas where KEDHAP already works.

This $35,000 will be sufficient to finance, for example, KEDHAP’s programs in four additional secondary schools, all receiving textbooks to be shared among students, a large water tank to supply clean water, feminine products as needed for vulnerable girls, organizing and guiding Life & Peace clubs, and paying school fees on behalf of several well-qualified students who would otherwise be unable to attend high school.  In addition, $35,000 will enable KEDHAP to extend its services to five new primary schools, start new greenhouse cooperatives and new dairy-goat clusters. These are all significant ways in which participants from frequently hostile ethnic communities can work together to overcome biases, reconcile disagreements and conflicts, and become friends.

Canada Connection

My name is Robert Kruse; I am a professor of mathematics and computing science, retired since 1998.  My major continuing commitment has been The Jubilee Charitable Trust, a registered Charity in Canada, which I founded in 1994 with royalties from sales of textbooks I authored, and which I continue to support from these and other resources.  The primary focus of the Jubilee Trust has been to support education, community and economic development, health care, and emergency relief, all within a Christian context in sub-Saharan Africa.  

Robert Kruse

From the late 1990’s, Jubilee Trust has worked primarily with several indigenous organizations operating in the region of western Kenya within about 70 km of the city of Kisumu.  This region was suffering greatly from the devastating AIDS pandemic for about two decades. At the pandemic’s peak in about 2000, this region had more than double the infection rates and deaths in other parts of Kenya.  Many people were dying in the midst of their most productive years; many tragic consequences followed, such as the sudden great need for orphanages (now past).

Through these years, I made several month-long visits to the area, meeting various groups and organizations, learning their accomplishments and their needs.  I met both the good and the bad, Kenyan leaders who genuinely cared about helping their people and those who cared mainly for themselves, some very prominent and some very ordinary.  Back in Canada, my learning continued from friends with extensive Kenya experience who guided my studies from their orientation of showing compassion for the people of Kenya.

On one of these trips, in July 2007, I travelled to the small rural village of Songhor (about 65 km east of Kisumu) and first met Bishop Clyde Agola, Program Coordinator Gordon Obado, and others from KEDHAP.  Clyde, Gordon, and I had a long, intense conversation that day, which revealed their extraordinary and heartfelt dedication to assist their neighbours suffering so greatly from AIDS and its destruction of families.  Gordon and Clyde explained their purpose, the thoughtful methods they were using, and later they gave me a thorough and well organized document summarizing their vision for the future of KEDHAP and providing much helpful information.

It was clear to the Jubilee Trustees that KEDHAP’s orientation and goals closely matched our own.  After completing the necessary formalities later in 2007, Jubilee Trust started providing financial support to KEDHAP, which has continued without interruption ever since.

Through the years, as KEDHAP and the Jubilee Trust have faced various problems and challenges together, we have solidified and deepened our relationships of mutual concern, support, and trust, so we work closely together toward accomplishing the hopes and goals we share with each other.

To date, Jubilee Trust has been able to fund most of KEDHAP’s approved budget each year, but, as a small private foundation, we can’t expect major increases in Jubilee funding.  We also have a stable community of about 50 regular annual donors who give to Jubilee Trust specifically for KEDHAP, older people who cannot be expected to increase their gifts. Finally, for a few years there were gifts from other sources that have now ended.

The conclusion is that, from current supporters (including my continuing support of Jubilee Trust), we cannot anticipate providing much if any increase in support to KEDHAP, and yet KEDHAP is doing important work with exciting prospects for growth, especially by expanding into the Kalenjin community and thereby bridging animosity and long-standing resentments, encouraging friendship and cooperation instead.  For this reason, we are seeking to reach many new donors through DevXchange, a group of donors that can grow and enhance KEDHAP’s wonderful work in education, health care, and release from poverty.

DevXchange involvement

KEDHAP is a totally indigenous Kenyan organization that originates, leads, and manages all its own programs and initiatives.

My role with DevXchange is first to provide liaison between KEDHAP in Kenya and interested people in North America, as well as with DevXchange.  As the liaison,  I am required to provide more than just communication. Since donors to Jubilee Trust and donors to DevXchange provide funding for KEDHAP, it is our responsibility to make sure that all of this funding is spent only for charitable activities that we endorse and approve in Kenya as charitable activities of DevXchange and/or Jubilee Charitable Trust, both of which are registered charities in Canada.  KEDHAP is our partner in Kenya to use the funding we provide only to carry out our charitable activities as authorized.

Therefore, as what DevXchange calls the “lead member” or “project lead” for KEDHAP, I have the responsibility to consult with KEDHAP and be familiar with all its activities that DevXchange finances, to discuss and approve any new initiatives KEDHAP wishes to take, and especially to consider the annual budget for KEDHAP, requesting modifications as needed, making sure it conforms to the priorities and requirements of DevXchange and of Jubilee Trust, and then obtain the approvals of both DevXchange and Jubilee Trust before the budget is implemented.  It is further my responsibility, starting from the (audited) financial statements of KEDHAP, to ensure that all expenditures are in accordance with the budget, as it may be amended from time to time.