Nyumbani Alumni Sustainability Project
When the Nyumbani Children's Home was founded in 1992, it was considered a hospice, where abandoned HIV-positive children were taken to live out the rest of their lives in a compassionate setting. Thankfully, the advent of anti-retroviral drugs and their widespread accessibility in African due to the efforts of the President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and other governmental and non-governmental humanitarian organizations, meant that the children in Nyumbani's care were given a chance to grow and thrive into adulthood.
Unfortunately, the transition from childhood at the Nyumbani Children's Home to adult life has not always been easy for Nyumbani's alumni. Sadly, the stigma of HIV/AIDS is still very real in Kenya, as is the high unemployment rate. As the global community works together to end AIDS by 2030, the focus is on ensuring that those living with HIV have equal access to the opportunities they so richly deserve.
In November 2023, Nyumbani-USA sponsored a fact-finding visit to Nairobi designed to engage Nyumbani's alumni. We encouraged them to be part of the solution to the gaps that exist in the process of launching children from life in a children's home to life in the outside world. In December 2023, the Board of Directors of Nyumbani-USA approved a proposal to fund a multi-pronged approach to assisting the Nyumbani alumni access resources and life skills training to create a better future through intentional planning. The six pillars of this project are:
mental health care counseling
improved medical care through registration under Kenya's new universal health care system
economic capacity building through skills training
social support and peer-to-peer accountability
Nyumbani-USA believes that this new focus on "Angelo's Alums" is the next step in ensuring that the mission begun in 1992 is fulfilled.