Our mission is to build a society where all children receive the necessary love and care essential to survive and thrive. We aim to promote the social integration of orphaned and other highly vulnerable children in Kibera who are in urgent need of protection and access to education and other support services.
Our founding members have been collectively engaged in outreach efforts within Kibera since the 1990’s. Formally registered as a Kenyan Nongovernmental Organization in 2004, our founders met as church volunteers who came together to help elderly people in the community to combat poverty.
As the HIV/AIDS epidemic began to soar, many of the elderly people being supported were struggling to care for grandchildren orphaned by AIDS. St. Vincent’s made the decision to transition its focus to directly support children who had lost parents and assist their guardians to support and care for them.
In 2000, we established the Nursery School to provide early education, nutrition, and protection for children ages 3-7 years. In 2005, St. Vincent’s established the Rescue Centre for orphaned and other extremely vulnerable children who have experienced abuse or neglect in their homes and have nowhere else to turn. Since this time, our programs have grown and evolved to meet the changing needs of our families and community.
Kibera is one of Africa's largest informal settlements. Residents lack basic services like electricity, running water and health care and most are living in extreme poverty. Soaring unemployment, together with high rates of food insecurity, HIV and AIDS, malaria and violence create high vulnerability, particularly among women and children.
Very young children are often left home unattended during the day while guardians are out seeking work, while older children may be withdrawn from school due to lack of resources or to support the family financially. Abuse and neglect of orphaned children living in extended families is common, as the burden of caring for additional children strains already limited resources.
Our work is designed to help children and families overcome these immense challenges, by creating a supportive safety net through access to education, nutrition, protection, and shelter services.