My brother-in-law Tarquin and his wife Lippa started the Emarti Development Fund in their community just north of the Masai Mara in Kenya. It supports the following projects:
The Emarti Primary School:
A school of over 700 pupils aged between 4 and 21! The children are benefiting from a primary education and have been supported by the fund since 2007. They have constructed 4 classrooms and installed a watertank and guttering system. They have also helped provide stationary, textbooks, sports equipment. The school has very limited resources and needs new windows and the junior school classrooms need to be rebuilt. They would also would also like to build a dining room and a dormitory so the students don’t have to walk the incredibly long distances to and from school.
The Emarti Secondary School:
This was started in 2000 by the Constituency Development Fund but it ran out of money after only a basic shell structure was built. Through fundraising, they have completed the 4 classrooms to high standard and built an administration block and toilets. They have also secured the perimeter with a fence. The fund has also purchaced 20 computers for the IT department of the school. The school became operational with its first 40 students in January 2011. They would also like to build a science laboratory, a dormitory and a dining room. Plans are also in the works to farm the land adjacent to the school to provide food for school lunches and also teach good farming practices. They are also are also opening a community library at the school in 2012.
The Riverbank Restoration and Reforestation Project:
A tree nursery has been started and indigenous trees have been planted along a section of the Mara River. “We’d like this to be a showcase for how the river edges could be, discouraging clearing and cultivation right to the very edge which is becoming more common, bringing all the top soil into the river with the rains. We’d like to create a kind of “Arboretum” and bring a beehive and honey project into these areas too”. As well, they are producing ad campaigns against the chopping down of trees and promoting the use of alternative fuels to firewood.. Solar lights and gas are now on offer for sale in Emarti. We would like to install biogas plants for the community of Emarti to use as community cookers.
The Emarti Health Clinic:
This is a simple and resource poor facility in Emarti which serves the whole community in health related issues. They have a public health officer and only a few nurses. The fund has donated medical equipment and World Vision have recently built an outpatient department, but they need to construct a maternity unit and a laboratory, improve the diagnostic department and buy an ambulance. Much to be done as the nearest facility to the community is Longisa, which is an hours drive away.