HISTORY $ BACKGROUND
Gathaithi ovc centre is a project designed for children orphaned or made vulnerable by HIV/AIDS. It is a community based organization founded in 2006 by a religious order which was one of the first group to respond to the needs of ovc at Gathaithi and its environs the centre was started as a feeding programme up to 2009,it is also registered as a charitable children institutioin. The centre is situated on 1.5 acres of land donated by Gathaithi primary school including its sixteen roomed building which was donated by Gathaithi primary school for renovation. In September 2009, 45 very needy children were sheltered.
The former headmistress of Gathaithi primary school Mrs. Githinji, realized that so many children were not attending classes due to high poverty levels which resulted to lack of basic needs such as food ,health care, protection and shelter, high level of children drop out leading them to seek for manual jobs and most of them ending up in the streets.
She therefore consulted the village elders, government officials and church elders who did a research and found that so many children were orphaned left under the care of ailing grandmothers due to HIV/AIDS .
Currently the centre cares and support 74 children who are orphaned and vulnerable. Among these, 20 very needy children are sheltered while the rest are under outreach program,are given the four basic needs i.e food, clothing, Education and health care, while residing from their not so well up relatives .
Our mission is to promote spiritual and social support and facilitate change for bettering the lives of ovc in pursuit of hope, perfection and promotion of united families through planned programs.
To improve quality of life of orphans and vulnerable children and their households through provision of care and support for the infected and affected and enhance prevention and protection.
- Performance and team work
Gathaithi ovc centre has a defined structure including a Board of trustees and a management committee. The structure determines chain of command and hierarchy of responsibility within the centre.
The day to day project planning and implementation is in the hand of the GOVCC staffs backed up nby the management committee. It is the responsibility of this committee to ensure that the entire community participates and is involved in major decision making processes.
The centre operates through locally generated funds, such as, annual fund raising walk in April, friends day in July and annual fund drive in October, local churches and government through secondary Education bursaries. Others include: Our Kenyan kids and lift the children.
GOVCC has a bank account and maintains sticks accounting systems by issuing standard accounting procedures.
The centre has grown in leaps and bounds since inception eleven years ago. The journey has not been without challenges. Some outstanding challenges include:
- Slow , irregular flow of finances
- Staff turnover in search of greener pastures
- Insufficient or no remuneration for volunteer caregivers.
- School fee is the main challenge since 20 children are in secondary schools while 9 in universities.
- Huge Electricity bill which can be supplemented with solar panels
- Installation of bio-gas digester to relieve the centre from firewood bills.
To face the above challenges and others the institution requires more partners and donations plus the starting of various income generating projects where profit will be used in sustenance of the whole institution.