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Kenya Keys needs assistance to build rescue center in Kenya

Attend an informational session April 11 to learn about GlobalGiving fundraising


by: SUBMITTED - Lake Oswego resident Rinda Hayes is a founder of Kenya Keys, a nonprofit organization that serves some of the most at-risk girls in the world. The organization plans to build Usalama Center, which will be a rescue center for young girls. Kenya Keys needs assistance to build a rescue center in Kenya.Kenya Keys, founded by Lake Oswego residents Brent and Rinda Hayes, is partnering with GlobalGiving, a fundraising website for non-profit organizations, to raise money to build a rescue center for girls in rural Kenya.

The organization has 30 days to raise $5,000 from at least 40 donors to meet GlobalGiving’s requirement. To inform the community about the project, Kenya Keys is holding an information session April 11 from 7 to 8:30 p.m. at Oswego Heritage House, 398 Tenth St.

“Kenya Keys serves some of the most at-risk girls in the world,” said Megan Wilcken, development director for Kenya Keys. “These girls start life full of hope, vivacity and big dreams. But life in rural Kenya is unbelievably hard — it does little to support the dreams of young girls.

“On a good day, these girls must handle heavy domestic workloads, gender bias within their families and communities, malnutrition or even starvation, disease (such as) malaria, HIV/AIDS, walking long distances to school and studying by the light of small, homemade kerosene lanterns.”

Wilcken said the girls face greater risks, including sexual violence, being kidnapped and sold into the sex trade, having to prostitute themselves to pay school fees or help support their families, becoming pregnant, sold as child brides or being attacked by animals or men on their way to school.

Kenya Keys hopes to build the Usalama (Swahili for safety) Center, which would provide the girls with a shelter, mentoring in assertiveness, life skills and study habits; family counseling to help parents find alternative methods of support other than selling daughters for a bride price; a study hall with light, resource books and tutors; classes to help girls who become pregnant stay in school and business training to help girls become self-sufficient.

Kenya Keys is using the GlobalGiving fundraising website to reach the goal of raising $18,000 for the construction of the Usalama Center.

At the presentation April 11, Rinda Hayes will share pictures and video from Kenya along with unique insights about helping girls in the developing world, based on her years of experience doing humanitarian work in Kenya.

All are invited to attend the session. For more information or to donate, visit kenyakeys.org and click on the Usalama Center link on the homepage.




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