Shining Hope for Communities (SHOFCO), a non-profit organization operating in Kenya has received accolades for their operating model that aims to transform urban slums from the Council on Foreign Relations based in Washington D.C. for their efforts in local slum developments.
The acknowledgement saw SHOFCO’s CEO Kennedy Odede address the Council and Georgetown University, one of the world’s leading academic and research institutions on how the SHOFCO model that operates as a grassroots movement works – through catalyzing largescale transformation in urban slums by providing critical services for all, community advocacy platforms, and education and leadership development for women and girls.
‘Through our work in Kibera, Mathere, Mukuru kwa Njenga and Bangladesh we believe that a holistic model is central in tackling urban poverty. We are humbled that our integrated approach that recognizes the multifaceted needs of the urban poor is getting this kind of recognition” said Kennedy Odede CEO, SHOFCO.
The visit also saw Mr. Odede have in depth one on one engagements with diplomats and leaders among them Dr. Jendayi Frazer, former U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs, Ambassador Johnnie Carson, Senior Advisor to the President, United States Institute of Peace and Donald Y. Yamamoto Acting Assistant Secretary, Bureau of African Affairs, U.S Department of State.
Mr Odede also met with the Acting Assistant Secretary, Bureau of African Affairs, U.S Department of State, Congress member Karen Bass, who serves on the House Committee on Foreign Affairs where she is Ranking Member of the Subcommittee on Africa, Global Health, Global Human Rights and International Organizations, Senator Chris Coons who is on the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations, Subcommittee on Africa and Global Health Policy, Senator John Boozeman from the Senate Committee on Appropriations, Congressman Ed Royce, the Chair, House Committee on Foreign Affairs and Senator Michael Bennet.
“We are proud to have put Kenya on the map for providing a tried and tested solution to address urban poverty. This recognition goes ahead to cement that our efforts are challenging the rest of the world, to make a difference. We couldn’t be happier” added Mr. Odede.
Founded in 2004 by Kennedy Odede, who was raised in the Kibera community, SHOFCO aims to combat the hardships found in slums by establishing initiatives that uplift the community. SHOFCO provides a tuition-free education to girls in the area to further invest in the overall wellbeing of the community. The services provided by SHOFCO support various community initiatives such as sanitation education, health care, and clean water. SHOFCO’s innovation in water is supported by Newman’s Own Foundation, Pentair, and the Greenbaum Foundation. SHOFCO also supplements the public with tools such as computer and library sources, financial management programs, a SACCO and adult education. The non-profit organization is headquartered in Nairobi, Kenya and New York, NY.