Help Make a Difference and Feed the Hungry Through #PamojaTuungane Initiative

Many families in Kenya do not know where their next meal will come from. Donate a meal today by dialling *126# #PamojaTuungane initiative.

Safaricom CEO Peter Ndegwa

Thousands of people living in the arid and semi-arid lands (ASAL) in Kenya face a fast-deteriorating humanitarian crisis – severe drought and hunger resulting from prolonged periods of no rain. There is no water, livestock is dying, people can barely afford a meal a day, and others are travelling for miles to get water.

In September 2021, H.E Uhuru Kenyatta declared the drought a national disaster, and funds were set aside to assist the affected families. However, the food security situation has been on a worsening trend in ASAL regions.

A recent report by the United Nations Office of Humanitarian Assistance (OCHA), for instance, shows that in Turkana, one of the driest parts of Kenya, lakeside communities can no longer survive on fishing. Pastoralists are losing their livestock, and people are going hungry and thirsty.

The report further states that crop and livestock production has been severely affected due to the prolonged drought, and hunger levels have reached record highs. Close to 3.5 million Kenyans in the affected areas do not have enough to eat.

While the government has made strides to mitigate the crisis, there is a dire need for the corporate sector to step in and enforce food distribution strategies in the affected areas. To this end, corporates, media, civil society and the government Monday come together to support families affected by drought in Kenya through the #PamojaTuungane initiative. 

The initiative aims to rally Kenyans to come together and support those suffering from the effects of the prolonged drought.

The campaign is open for everyone to join, and it seeks to raise funds to provide emergency assistance to drought-stricken areas in Kenya. So far, Safaricom, the M-PESA Foundation, KCB Foundation, Naivas, Ernst & Young, Royal Media Services, Nation Media Group, Media Max, The Standard Group, and Radio Africa Group have joined the program.

The campaign officially kicked off Monday in Nairobi, with Safaricom committing over 100 million shillings as a start through its Foundation. The initiative targets all 23 counties in the ASAL regions affected by drought, starting with Marsabit County.

The county is currently at the alarm phase of food and nutrition security. Approximately 275,971 people require immediate humanitarian assistance, and 91,957 of them cannot meet all their food requirements at the household level.

The funds raised through the Pamoja Tuungane initiative will be used to feed the affected households, with more funds directed to assist other affected areas.

We are working with the Ministry of Public Service and Gender, Senior Citizens Affairs, and Special Programmes to identify the households and help with last-mile distribution,” said Safaricom in a statement.

Safaricom’s partnership with Ernst & Young is to help ensure transparency and management of the funds collected through the initiative. It will also work with the State Department of Social Protection to ensure all donations are used for the intended purpose.

“Ernst & Young will audit every item and ensure that the money donated is used for its intended purpose and that every targeted household is reached. A report on this will be available for all who participated to see a breakdown of the food items and funds,” added Safaricom.

How Can Kenyans Participate?

The Pamoja Tuungane initiative is not limited to corporate entities. You can make a difference too! You can participate by buying food hampers at discounted prices from Naivas Supermarkets across the country. These will then be transported to Marsabit and other affected areas.

Safaricom subscribers can also donate their Bonga points towards this initiative. The Bonga Points will be used to purchase food items. One can also make a cash donation on M-PESA through Paybill 444777.

How to Donate With Bonga Points

  • Dial *126#
  • Select Option 0: Pamoja Tuungane
  • Select Any amount to support
  • Enter the amount of Bonga Points you wish to donate
  • You will be shown the equivalent amount in Kshs to confirm
  • Enter Your Service PIN & Submit
  • You will then receive a confirmation message on the contribution made with a link to the website to view the Total funds raised

What If You are Not a Safaricom Subscriber?

Everyone has a chance to contribute. If you are not a Safaricom subscriber, you can buy the food hamper at Naivas or make your donation through Paybill 444777.

We did it for the Kenyans for Kenya initiative; we can do it now. Make your donation today and help accomplish the goal of feeding our fellow citizens who are starving in parts of the country. Your donations will enable the purchase of food items to be distributed to some of the worst-affected counties.

#PamojaTuungane 💪💪

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IK is a Masinde Muliro University graduate. His interests are in news and analysis on women's rights, politics, technology, law, and global affairs.

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