On August 17, 2020, a Kenyan living in Florida received a check of $400 as a subsidize for their rent. The livelihood that this Kenyan had hitherto relied on, was untimely cut short when their employer closed shop due to the disastrous impact Covid-19 had on the economy. This check marked the last installment of the money distributed by Kenyans in America COVID Relief Fund (KACRF) initiative, to 19 Kenyans living in the United States. This money was meant to cushion Kenyans against financial hardships precipitated by Covid-19
The money distributed was raised through a fundraiser coordinated by a team of 13 like-minded Kenyans living in America, who joined hands in a campaign aimed at helping fellow Kenyans affected by Covid-19. A total of $10,260 was raised by well-wishers.
Beneficiaries from 11 states (Minnesota, Texas, Washington, New York, South Carolina, Louisiana, Florida, Ohio, Georgia, Oklahoma, and Missouri), received financial donations ranging from $100 to $1,000. The donations were based on the needs of each beneficiary, which were determined by a vetting team that ensured the validity and authenticity of claims. Kenyan international students in America were some of the beneficiaries. One of the beneficiaries noted the following:
“I CANNOT thank you and your team enough!! On behalf of my girls, we appreciate everything you all have done for us. This grant indeed will take us a long, long way. Many thanks. I just wanted to tell you that I really appreciate your help, and may God bless you all”
~One recipient remarked.
The need for a fundraiser was arrived at through a survey that sought to find out how Covid-19 had affected Kenyans living in the United States. The results showed that some respondents had been affected by Covid-19 and needed financial assistance. As a result, this informed the need to raise funds in an exercise that was conducted for three weeks predominantly through GoFundMe and Facebook Fundraising platforms.
Apart from financial assistance, some respondents indicated that they needed Legal assistance, to which the team was able to reach out through legal counsel and provide the relevant assistance. Other respondents who had different needs were linked to available external resources.
The Kenyans in America COVID Relief Fund (KACRF) initiative team would like to give special thanks and appreciation to friends who contributed towards this initiative. You all made our job easy and together we helped a fellow Kenyan. The little help we gave to those who needed our support, we believe, has gone a long way, especially at this uncertain time of need.
We would also like to give a special thanks to DJ Babu, DJ Terrie the Hippie, and Dj Sunny Sistuki for allowing us to utilize their talents and time to fundraise on their platforms. We are deeply indebted to the administrators of the 254 Diaspora DJs Live in the Mix, for allowing us to fundraise through their platform. Many thanks to Samrack Media and Mwakilishi Media for partnering with the initiative in media releases.
The Kenyans in America COVID Relief Fund (KACRF) initiative was championed by Mr. Anthony Thuothuo, Mr. Mukurima Muriuki, Ms. Lilly Richards, Mr. Paul Nzengu, Dr. Dawn Mueni Becker, Ms. Wairimu Kimani, Mr. George Mbugua, Ms. Judy Nzeki, Prof. Jerono Rotich, Ms. Brendah Beekay, and Mr. Karanja Gijuju.
KACRF was successful because you all made it so. THANK YOU!
These are other testimonials we received from the beneficiaries:
- “Thank you so much that will be a big deal. I’m so so grateful. Thanks to your team and may God bless you all.”
- “….my (daughter) and I got the cash. I’m so overjoyed this will go a long way in assisting me to pay for my rent. I got no words for you guys for appreciation. May Almighty God bless you abundantly. I’m saying this from the bottom of my heart.”
- “Thank you and everyone behind the scenes who made this happen for me and everyone in need.”
- “Thank you so much this will go a long way in pushing my rent for this month.”
- “Thanks for responding and the consideration. I am really grateful.”