CARE's work in Kenya

Despite being one of Africa's most developed nations, the gap between rich and poor in Kenya is growing. CARE has been here in since 1968, supporting the work of Harambee, the village-level self-help movement. We initially provided schools and worked on community development and long-term agro-forestry projects. Today we work with communities on health, livelihoods, water and sanitation, climate change adaptation and disaster risk reduction. We support refugees with water and hygiene, food and formal education in camps along the Somali border. We also work with civil society and local organisations to help them build their skills and knowledge. 

The world's largest refugee camp

Since the creation of the Dadaab refugee camps in 1991 for people fleeing from civil war in Somalia, CARE has provided assistance to the refugee population in addition to supporting host communities around the camps. The camps were originally built to hold 90,000 people, but the population exploded during the Horn of Africa food crisis that began in 2010. The camps are now the size of a small city, with a population approaching half a million – 58% of whom are aged under 18.

CARE is the primary provider of basic services in Dadaab, including food, water and sanitation. We provide emergency aid to newly-arrived refugees, especially children who are suffering from malnutrition. Families are provided with two weeks' worth of food rations and other essentials, including tents, kitchen sets, firewood and fuel-efficient stoves.

CARE also works with people living in spontaneous settlements outside the perimeter of the official camps, helping these communities with safe water and sanitation, improved security, and access to health services and emergency shelter.

We also run long-term programmes providing:

  • employment to refugees to assist in delivering services; 
  • education, including operating five primary schools in Dagahaley camp thatenrol 16,000 students, almost half of whom are girls; 
  • water and sanitation, including rehabilitating the camps' water system in 2012 through the construction and maintenance of bore holes and water storage facilities;
  • protection and safety, including counselling services and neighbourhood forums on the prevention of gender-based violence. 

Women power

Women from Nanighi community in Kenya are seeing the impacts of more severe and frequent drought. In 2012 they worked with CARE and local journalists to learn how to create digital picture stories, like this one. It shows how they've been affected by drought, and how they are adapting to the very challenging conditions they find themselves in.

CARE's impact

We work in 104 countries around the world, saving lives in emergencies and finding long-term solutions to poverty for millions of people every year.

About CARE

Founded in 1945 to send 'CARE packages' to people recovering from war, we have been fighting poverty in the world’s poorest countries for 75 years.

Our aims

We empower women and girls to fulfil their potential – because when one woman is helped out of poverty, she brings her family and community with her.

Your support

Your support is what makes our poverty-fighting work possible. You can trust us to spend our funds wisely and effectively to help people in need.

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