USAID announces Sh5 billion support for Kenya’s Covid-19 response and recovery efforts

USAID has announced $50 million (Sh5 billion) to support Kenya’s response and recovery efforts to meet the immediate and long-term challenges posed by Covid-19.

“The American people have always been generous to those in need around the world, and today Kenya is facing the compound challenges of Covid-19, flooding, and locusts.”

“We are focusing on ensuring resources get to the counties and communities because Kenya’s communities are Kenya’s greatest asset in overcoming these challenges,” US Ambassador Kyle McCarter said in a statement released by the embassy on Wednesday

Among the programmes USAID is implementing include strengthening health and water systems and ensure effective communication and community engagement, which will cost Sh1.5 billion.

USAID will also provide Sh2.8 billion to ensure small businesses can stay afloat.

This, the mission notes, is necessitated by loss of livelihoods from stay at home orders to prevent the spread of Covid-19.

“It is equally critical the agribusiness sector can maintain an operational food supply chain, and short-term emergency food as well as longer-term food security,” the embassy said.

They will also give Sh610 million to ensure children keep reading through distance learning, young people gain jobs in emerging areas, and to support citizen-responsive governance to help mitigate possible conflict, violence, and civil unrest.

“US funds directly benefit Kenyans. We partner with the Kenyan government, NGOs, civil society and local organisations and institutions to support the Kenyan people. The US requires our partners to adhere to rigorous reporting requirements and standards,” USAID Mission Director Mark Meassick said.

USAID Mission Director Mark Meassick / TWITTER

The embassy also reported that to date, more than 1,600 health workers have been trained in 35 counties; 272,000 Ministry of Health posters on the prevention and symptoms of Covid-19 printed and distributed across 23 high-risk counties and personal protective equipment (PPEs) was repurposed from the Ebola outbreak response to protect healthcare workers.

In addition, the mission said, labs are being provided diagnostic and capacity-building support to meet the ever-increasing testing demand.

Ambassador McCarter has also been distributing masks in to the police and civilians.

“Looking to get the first million Marafiki masks out as soon as possible to those who need them most. Affordable, breathable, comfortable, reusable, washable,” he said on June 28.

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