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How Kibera is responding to Coronavirus?

Updated: Mar 24, 2020

A week ago, a case of Coronavirus was detected in Kenya. Right away the government declared all schools closed and public events banned.

But how can people in Kibera wash their hands when water is scarce and already a huge part of their daily budget? How can they isolate themselves when everyone live in close proximity sharing toilets and shower rooms, when pathways are so narrow and street markets the only place to get food ?

Everyone is scared that the virus is going to hit Kibera very hard because social distancing is almost impossible when there is so much congestion of inhabitants ?

Uweza Foundation decided as a first response to make soaps and DIY sanitizers within their young mothers program to give away around. With the help of David Avido, Kibera famous fashion designer, they also made cloth face masks as no medical masks are available. As you can see in the slideshow below, Jeff Okoth, Uweza's county director, and David distributed information leaflets, masks and soaps throughout the slum. We need your help NOW as we would like to distribute 5,000+ masks within the next few days. Fabric is expensive! Thanks for your help!

As a way of increasing awareness and educating the community, Uweza Art Gallery artists have been painting murals around Kibera with information about ways to protect oneself from COVID-19 and what to do if you are feeling unwell. As you can see below on the photos, artists Wesley, Josphat, Wendy, and Boniface spent yesterday covering the walls of Kibera with Coronavirus information graffitis.

One of our next challenge will be to raise money for food. As the school which distribute two meals a day are closed, many parents won't be able to provide foods to their children. Isolation or lockdown will mean no cash for the family because most people in Kibera are casual workers (under $2 a day in general). Next step for us and Uweza Foundation will be to identify people in extreme needs and distribute rice and corn flour to the families. We need your help to organize a food pantry as soon as possible. One sack of 50kg rice is $25.

If you would like to buy some of David's face masks for the US or Europe, contact us at

@photos by Maxwell Anduvati

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