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Impt Update - Positive Women from WOFAK in Kenya facing urgent crises - help sought

Dear all,

This note came from a colleague who works with WOFAK -- Women Fighting AIDS In Kenya. It outlines the hunger and eviction facing HIV positive people who find themselves on diff sides of new ethnic divides there, especially in slum areas.
What can you do? At the very least, reach out to WOFAK. I'll pass on any messages here. As I am headed for Nairobi Wed, I will see how to try to assist in the personal cases outlined below. WOFAK needs our support, urgently. Please share this message with donors of food aid in particular. - AC

Hello everyone,

Is it a sad moment for us Kenyans.

As I share these pictures, Rebecca Awiti, HIV positive
and the home based care giver at Women Fighting AIDS
in Kenya (WOFAK) and a mother of 1 year old triplets
says she has gone for three days without proper food
and no milk for her children. The body of her husband
who died on the day of Kenyan elections is also
rotting in a mortuary in Nairobi. A couple of minutes
after I sent a text message to Rebecca she received a
text message from Kenya's internal security
threatening to prosecute her if she continues to
communicate with the external world. How can we help
people like Rebecca and her children leave alone the
husbands body?

Rebecca lives in the Kayole slums where WOFAK draws
some of its clients and reports that some clients have
been kicked out by their landlords by virtue of being
from other ethnic groups. An example is Joyce opany
and her family whose landlord asked to pay him rent
and vacate the house immediately and many others.
Joyce happens to be the one who prepares food for the
orphans and vulnerable children that WOFAK takes care
of soem of who are children headed families and
residing in Nairobi slums.

There is a sect/religious cult in Kenya known as
"Mungiki" which is predominantly for Kikuyus the
community where the disputed president comes from who
have gone on rampage raping women and girls and
hacking people from other ethnic groups to death
mostly in Nairobi slums where WOFAK draws mahjority of
its clients. This has lasted since the post violence
elections sparked.

When I talked to my two young brothers and cousin aged
16, 18 and 15 who live in Nairobi they said they
cannot even sleep because Mungiki have promised to
move to other estates in Nairobi and finish/kill other
non kikuyus. They lastly went out last monday to
purchase some food which they have now exhausted and
they cannot travel to the country side because home is
500kms away and there is too much violence in Eeldoret
and other parts where they should pass.

My elder brother is stranded in the countryside where
he had gone to cast his votes, his cell phone went off
last monday and he cannot charge because we have never
had electricity in the villages in that part of Kenya,
which means neither TV nor newspapers can reach them.
At the same time he cannot travel to the nearest
market center because in that area police are using
live rounds.

These are very few very practical citations and I am
left wondering to how many is this happening to right
now. How many of these raped women and girls will
contract HIV? How many of our colleagues who are on
ARVS and have stopped taking because they cannot go
for refills? What could be happening to the orphans
especially the HIV infected orphans and the children
headed families? How about the ones uin the wards
suffering from life threatening or disabling
opportunistic infection attacks?

The pictures speak for themselves and help think
through any solutions, every solution can create
impact.

In Solidarity,
Lillian,
National Coordinator,
Network of Positive Women, Children and Youth, Kenya

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