Bondo Community Initiatives
Bondo Town is located near Lake Victoria in Nyanza Province, Kenya, about 50 kms northwest of Kisumu. Located in an agricultural area, the town was established as a market centre in the early 1920's and has a current population of approximately 48,000 persons. HIV/AIDS orphans are one of the most vulnerable groups in the area, and are represented in almost 50% of the school population. This high number is attributed to the major health issues in the region, including 23% HIV/AIDS, and high rates of malaria, TB, and maternal mortality. The orphans face numerous hardships resulting from poverty, insufficient food, low nutritional standards, poor housing and lack of access to basic services, such as water and sanitation. To compound these problems, they often live on the periphery of the towns where the institutions that cater to their needs, such as schools and health centers, are situated, and have no access to the town infrastructure and, therefore, end up lacking basic amenities, such as water and toilet facilities. Other challenges faced by the Bondo Community include inadequate school infrastructures (substandard buildings, no water and only 1 outhouse per 80 children), and the inability to pay school fees,
ICO Foundation has been establishing initiatives with this community since February 2012. The initial goals of the community are to improve school infrastructure, support programs at the local community centre, assist youth and women in generating income and becoming self-sufficient, improve infrastructure at a rural medical clinic(s), assist with local water and sanitation projects, and the provision of humanitarian goods donated by Ash Lee Jefferson School in Fall River, NS, Canada.