Kisumu, Kenya: Archdiocese Pledges Support to Flood Victims and Covid-19 Sufferers

Nairobi (Agenzia Fides) – “We will reach out to many other places because the generosity of our people has so far made us to be convinced that the jar will not go empty nor the jug of oil will run dry (1Kings 17:14)”, said the Archbishop of Kisumu, His Exc. Mgr. Philip Anyolo, praising the delivery of food and basic necessities to the victims of the floods that hit his archdiocese.

The items that included maize flour, a packet of sugar, green grams, beans and beddings were donated by Franciscan Sisters of St. Anna among other well-wishers and distributed by Caritas Kisumu personnel to over 400 households affected by floods in Nyando and Nyakach Sub-Counties.

Archbishop Anyolo said that the Archdiocese will identify and support other needy families affected by COVID–19 pandemic in Kisumu and Siaya Counties, and called on members of the public and well-wishers “to support the initiative to ease the burden of those adversely hit by the negative economic impact of Coronavirus”.

Archbishop Anyolo said Coronavirus pandemic has led to shutdown of businesses and loss of jobs, making it difficult for several families in the Country to put food on the table.
Most Rev. Anyolo who is also the Chairman of the Kenya Conference of Catholic Bishops (KCCB) said the Church is committed in giving hope to the hopeless by donating foodstuff during the time that the government is grappling to contain the spread of Coronavirus.

The Archbishop commissioned a response team led by Caritas Director Rev. Fr. Samuel Nyattaya, to advise the Archdiocese on how to promptly respond to emergencies that may emerge as a result of COVID-19 pandemic. (L.M.) (Agenzia Fides, 6/5/2020)

KENYA: Care for Creation “Begins from Change of Heart,” Prelate at Tree Planting Initiative

A Prelate from Kenya’s Archdiocese of Kisumu during tree planting initiative to mark the end of the special Laudato Si’ anniversary year has stressed that caring for creation requires individual’s change of heart.

“It is not just planting trees, but change of heart,” Archbishop Philip Arnold Anyolo told AMECEA online in an interview Friday, May 21, adding that, “One should act consciously knowing that caring for creation is charity work.”

KENYA: Caritas in Kisumu Archdiocese Aid People with Disability Amidst COVID-19

Kisumu Archdiocese through Caritas office has reached out to assist People with Disabilities (PWDs) whom they felt had been overlooked in-terms of sensitization and provision of basic needs in the wake of COVID-19 pandemic.

Caritas “shares the mission of the Catholic Church to serve the poor and promote charity and justice throughout the world,” ensuring that the voices of the poor are heard and acted upon,” Fr. Samuel Nyattaya the Director Caritas Office, Kisumu told AMECEA Online in an interview Monday, April 20.

“We (Caritas Kisumu) teamed up with other Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) and formed a WhatsApp Group named Kisumu City Response. Different organizations in this group made their own interventions towards sensitizing the people of Kisumu on Covid-19,” he continued.

Fr Nyattaya further disclosed, “We noticed a gap in that there was a special category of people who had not received attention. These were the People with Disabilities (PWDs).”

“Immediately, we sprang into action to give them whatever support we could. The love of Christ, caritas Christi, urges us to make this response towards this category of the people of God,” Fr. Nyattaya explained.

The PWDs who have been carrying out small businesses within Kisumu town before COVID-19 outbreak, are currently in their homes with no jobs after government issued directives to be followed to help stem the spread of Coronavirus.

According to the cleric, the PWDs were “relocated from the usual market places where they used to sell their wares. In some cases, they were not considered in the allotment of spaces, owing to the vulnerability of some of them due to low immunity. They have been forced to stay at home (and) this heavily impacted on their daily living.”

“Every year, the Archdiocese of Kisumu, like all the dioceses in Kenya, carry out a campaign during the season of Lent. During these campaigns, people make contributions from their fasting. As we budget with this money, a huge chunk of it is allocated for social justice projects like helping people during humanitarian crisis,” he said.

Caritas Kisumu who managed to reach 65 PWDs irrespective of their faith, offered foodstuff which would be enough for about two days.

“This, we hope, can ease the burden of feeding their families, especially now that their businesses have been affected. We also gave them a bar of soap each, now that washing of hands is one of the ways of keeping the virus away,” the director added.

Asked about the future plan Caritas Kisumu has with PWDs, Fr Nyattaya who is also Director of Catholic Justice and Peace Commission (CJPC) disclosed that they intend to sensitize the PWDs on how to prevent themselves from Coronavirus and also reach out to those affected by floods.

“One huge gap we noticed in our interaction with the PWDs is the lack of proper information about Covid-19. There has not been a concerted education that has been tailor-made with the PWDs in mind. We engaged with Red Cross and did a small training for about 15 of them but we plan to link with our Health Department to organize a training for the PWDs on how to keep safe from the virus,” Fr. Nyattaya said.

Speaking as a beneficiary, Mr. Nick Mak’Ondwat said in a video clip posted in Caritas Archdiocese Kisumu Facebook page, “Most of us are back in the houses and that means we are doing nothing. Therefore, getting income is a challenge.”

 “Persons with disability have been really affected because all those who were doing businesses cannot continue with their work (and) I think this is one of the first activities we are seeing for distributing food for People with Disability, and we kindly request you to continue and even help us look for more support,” he added.

EVALUATION OF LENTEN CAMPAIGNS OF 2021

National Office.
This Office brings together the NES (National Executive Secretary, various Program Officers, Representatives of Partners like Agia Mondo, Administrative Secretaries, and Accountants.
This Office, housed at the KCCB-Secretariat in Nairobi, Westlands, is tasked to (among other responsibilities) publish the Lenten Campaign Materials (Booklets and Posters) to all the Arch/Dioceses.
In doing our evaluations, they too must be able to look back and adjust where necessary, gathering the lessons learnt and charting the next journey that the upcoming Campaigns are to take.

CREATION OF THE COMMISSION FOR THE PROMOTION OF INTEGRAL HUMAN DEVELOPMENT

In 2016, the Holy Father created the Dicastery for the Promotion of Integral  Human Development. This brought together the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace, the Pontifical Council Cor Unum, the Pontifical Council for the Pastoral Care of Migrants and Itinerant People, and the Pontifical Council for Health Care Workers.
When KCCB (the Kenya Conference of Catholic Bishops) met this year 2021 and elected various Arch/Bishops to head various Commissions at their Secretariat, a NEW COMMISSION WAS CREATED dealing with the PROMOTION OF INTEGRAL HUMAN DEVELOPMENT. This meant a lot of changes: Some Commissions became Departments, that is Caritas, CJPC, Health, and Sea Farers.
This week, from Monday 14th June 2021 up to 18th June 2021, the CJPD (Catholic Justice & Peace Department) has been meeting to prepare itself for one of its KEY PROGRAMS, famous as LENTEN CAMPAIGN for next year, 2022.

5th Anniversary of Laudato Si

At the close of the year-long 5th Anniversary of Laudato Si, Pope Francis launched the new Laudato si’ Action Platform.
The Holy Father said, “Working together, each one with his own culture and experience, each one with her own initiatives and capacities, so that our mother Earth may be restored to her original beauty and creation may once again shine according to God’s plan.”

 

 

DONATION OF PPEs BY EQUITY BANK

Speaking during the event of receiving the donations, the Parish Priest of St Mary’s Chiga Catholic Church, Rev. Fr. Samuel Nyattaya, saw the hidden Divine Providence in the fact that we received these donations on the day when the Church celebrates the BIRTHDAY OF ST JOHN THE BAPTIST. Just as John the Baptist was a special donation to the world, and signified a lot of good things to come, these donations of PPEs from Equity signals a lot of hopeful and glad tidings between us.
He thanked the staff of the Hospital and all the health care-givers for their selflessness at these unprecedented times, noting how much PRIESTS and HEALTH-CARE GIVERS are seriously exposed on a daily basis, hence the need to get these PPEs.
He also noted with gladness the other joint interventions that Equity has had with the Parish of Chiga when they donated 5000 tree seedlings to be planted in our churches within Kolwa East of the larger Kisumu County.