Who We Serve

The Alice Visionary Foundation Project (AVFP) is an NGO with a vision of improving quality of life through education, food security and poverty alleviation in Kenya. The organization was founded with a mission of caring and supporting vulnerable groups infected and affected by the HIV/AIDS epidemic. AVFP operates within Kisumu County with offices in Jubilee Insurance House – Kisumu and Amilo Village, in North East Kano Location in Muhoroni Sub-County. AVFP has an OVC focused community development and school feeding programs in North East Kano Location in Muhoroni District and recently established an Urban Women Empowerment Project in Kisumu City. Herein we deliver a comprehensive array of programs and services designed to enable women and girls in Kisumu Urban Informal Settlements to realize, enjoy and capitalize on their full potential and maximize impact to their extended families.

We are currently serving orphans and vulnerable children from Amilo Village/Muhoroni District in Kenya. Like most other rural areas, there is a large orphan population in this area due to the high HIV/AIDS prevalence rate.

Why did we start with these children?

AVFP wanted to involve the community in identifying their own needs right from the beginning as this is their project. The organization then carried out a needs assessment survey with the villagers. Through this assessment, it became apparent to AVFP that the community felt that the issue of orphans was of a high priority.

Both primary and secondary data were used for this needs assessment. An action-oriented approach was used to collect data in the community. A baseline needs assessment was carried out with the villagers in July, August, and September 2005 to identify needs and interventions. Sets of surveys were used to assess community needs including: household and community economics, agricultural practices, basic environmental conditions, energy, water, infrastructure conditions and use, gender and education, and health.

A series of brainstorming sessions were also held with village elders, key opinion leaders and local officials from other surrounding villages neighboring Amilo village in August and September 2005. There were also focus groups with village elders, church leaders, women (particularly midwives), key opinion leaders, youth, Amilo Primary School principal/headmaster and teachers and guardians of all the orphans identified.

Key general issues identified out of the community interviews were: many total orphans in the community, low accessibility to health services, poverty, lack of medications, many school dropouts, HIV/AIDS, unemployment, lack of school facilities, teenage pregnancy, alcoholism, malaria, high infant mortality, drought, lack of school fees, lack of co-operation between community members, political interference on development projects and aging problems.

Amilo Primary School served as an entry-point to the community. Several types of orphans were identified from the local primary school. The two categories were total orphans (with no father or mother) and partial orphans (with only one parent). They all faced similar challenges and were in urgent need of assistance as far as giving them a chance to pursue education.

In order to scale the number of orphans that AVFP could support initially, the orphans were rated following a certain criteria: their relationship to guardian/household head, type of orphan (total or partial), origin (community where they come from), whether the orphan is the head of the household and the ability of the guardian. Total orphans who were household head were considered first, then as the project grew inclusion of partial orphans and other vulnerable children were considered. A sum of twenty-five total orphans was identified. After further interviews with the orphans and guardians separately, only twelve orphans and one vulnerable girl qualified to start in the AVFP project.

How did we choose the other projects?

After our initial survey, we then returned to the villagers with the results. We asked them to further prioritize their list of needs. The second project undertaken was the school feeding program. This need was crucial as many children only eat one meal a day and are not able to attend school or concentrate in class due to lack of nutrition. Other projects initiated included school and community gardens to grow vegetables for increased food security and chicken rearing.