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Rebuilding Widows' Homes And Lives

Help us reclaim rights and rebuild the lives of Kenyan widows.

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Supporting widows to rise against all odds and rebuild their lives

 

 

 

At just the tender age of 18 years, Louise Achieng Juma got married to her beloved husband Yusuf Ochieng’ Juma, in Seme Constituency, Kisumu County. They enjoyed a good marriage and together they had six children.  When she was six months pregnant with their seventh child, Juma was involved in an accident and died.

 

 Thrown into disarray, Louise did not know where to begin without her rock and fortress. Her husband had provided for all their needs through his chicken business. She knew she had to play both roles to ensure her children were fed and educated. Little did she know that another tragedy was about to befall them.

 

 In 2012, One year after the death of her husband, Louise’s eldest brother-in-law insisted she had to be inherited as per the Luo customs and traditions. When she refused, he demolished her house, sold off their belongings and sent her and her children away.

 

 Left with no options, Louise had to find a quick solution to settle her family. A kind neighbour accepted to take in her children for one day while she went to the market place to find a rental house and work. She found a small house at Akado market in Seme and went back for her children.

 

 She began working as casual labourer weeding farms and selling charcoal or maize or mandazi (doughnuts) to earn a living.  Buying food and paying school fees for her children was her top priority. It reached a point she could not even afford to pay the Ksh 500 and she had to work for the landlord as collateral for the rent arrears.

 

 Life was not so easy having children in high school. As a result, she joined a widows’ table banking group back in 2016. Around the same time, she was attending a Chief’s baraza (meeting). She met a widow who had benefitted from the alternative justice systems interventions. The widow introduced her to an elder who took up her case.

 

 With support from the Luo Council of Elders and KELIN, Louise’s disinheritance case was successfully mediated. She was given back her land. With the help of the elders, her in-laws understood that it was her legal right to inherit her husband’s land. She has since been cultivating it to provide food for her children. She sells extra crops to get income to sustain her family.

 

Her entire earnings go to her children’s school fees; she barely has a coin to save. This has made it difficult for Louise to pay rent, let alone build a house on the land. Most often than not, finds herself working as a casual labourer for the landlord as collateral for rent arrears.

 

 Having a roof over their heads will help ease her burden. She is counting on each one of us to build their home. This will ensure what she manages to earn from selling crops that she cultivates or from wages paid from casual jobs will go into feeding, educating and clothing her children.

 

 It will cost Ksh 100,000 to construct a modest, semi-permanent house. KELIN is counting on the support of all our friends and partners to raise these funds. We welcome in-kind contributions of building materials, dry foodstuff, bedding and clothing. Support Widow Louise today and give her and her seven children a new lease on life.

 

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Dial: *483*57*31757#


Paybill: 891300

Account: 31757

Business Name: MCHANGA

Reference: 31757


Business Number: 891300

Account Number: 31757


Dial: *160*2*1#

Paybill: 891300

Account: 31757

Jessica Achieng Oluoch    -    2547114XXXXX