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THE NIKO FITI JOURNEY

The Niko Fiti Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) flagship programme by Kenya Reinsurance Corporation was launched in the year 2011 and has journeyed through different phases over the years. Initially the campaign focused on providing clinical assessment, orthopaedic mobility and assistive devices and providing public education on disability through public awareness and sensitization campaigns. In 2016, the campaign extended to include persons with visual & hearing (sensory) disabilities and physiological/mental disabilities and aimed to ultimately grow awareness around disabilities while championing PWDs inclusion and participation in national building activities.

 

Over the last four years, the Niko Fiti CSR programme has touched and changed the lives of over 3000 persons living with physical disability through the provision of assistive and mobility devices in Kenya. Having earmarked disability as a national priority with low intervention structures, Kenya Re developed Niko Fiti to spearhead this cause.

According to the 2007 Kenya National Survey for Persons with disabilities (KNSPWDs), regionally, the highest disability rates were recorded in Nyanza (6.8%) followed by Coast (5.2%) and Central (5.2%) provinces. The lowest disability rates were found in North Eastern Province (2.6%) followed by Rift Valley (3.2%). The highest disability rated areas have been covered by most interventions however the low rated areas are due to high level of stigma and cultural – socio challenges among communities, requires attention for provision of mobility and assistive devices.

The Niko Fiti campaign is now recognized nationally for the promotion of mobility and accessibility of PWDs faced by mobility impairments through provision of assistive devices. By so doing, the beneficiaries can now engage in daily community, social and nation building activities. The campaign also aimed at destigmatizing disability in the Kenyan society. Over the last four years the campaign, through a series of caravans, traversed through the Nairobi County (Eastern Nairobi, Ngong road, Thika road), Coast Region (Voi, Mombasa, Kwale, Kilifi, Lamu & Tana River), Upper Eastern (Meru & Isiolo), Rift Valley (Nakuru & Eldoret), Nyanza (Kisumu, Vihiga, Bondo, Siaya & Kisii) as well as the Western region donating various assistive devices and educating the public on the importance of accepting persons living with disabilities.

We attribute the success of the Niko Fiti CSR campaign over the years through the Corporations partnership with the Association of Persons with Disabilities of Kenya (APDK) to aid in identification, assessment of persons living with disability through their nationwide distribution network and fabrication of the devices in their workshops in major towns in Kenya. APDK also equipped the mobile vending unit beneficiaries with knowledge on leadership and Governance training, existing policies on disabilities as well as group dynamics and importance of persons with disabilities initiating disabled persons organizations for advocacy support. In addition, they were given insights on financial management, basic record keeping and entrepreneurship skills. Budget planning and monitoring progress for business growth was also an area captured during the training. As a result, the skills acquired enabled their business to thrive hence support their fellow family members for participation and productivity in the community. 

Since its inception, over 3000 PWD’s have benefited from the distribution of walking frames, crutches both Elbow and Axillary crutches, prosthetic limbs, wheelchairs, special seats, mobile vending units, white canes, stylus, and diapers for cerebral palsy children. The beneficiaries who received the mobile vending units were entitled to a start –up stock of goods worth Ksh. 4000 to assist them start a business or boost their business. The training they received enabled them run their business more effectively.

Going forward Niko Fiti Campaign is geared up to achieve great strides in 2017 and beyond.

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