The Harambee Stars captain speaks on how his foundation is helping Kenyans to cope with the Covid-19 pandemic
Kenya international Victor Wanyama has revealed the role he has been playing to help curb the spread of the coronavirus pandemic in the country.
Wanyama, who currently turns out for Montreal Impact in Major League Soccer (MLS), has explained how his Victor Wanyama Foundation has played a key role in helping Kenyans, mostly those in the slum areas, to survive amid the outbreak.
“The Foundation has been going around the ghettos and the slums of Kenya. As you know, one of the biggest slums in the world is in Kenya,” Wanyama, told Impact Media.
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“We’re there to educate the children and provide them with masks, also providing them to anyone who doesn’t have any. We are also there to empower women who lost their job due to Covid-19, by providing them with the necessary tools to sew and brand these masks, which ends up creating jobs.”
According to Wanyama, who is working in conjunction with UN-Habitat, over 40 women have been employed through the initiative and they were able to produce over 7,000 masks to help in the fight against Covid-19.
“The most important part for us was to get into homes, educate them about Covid-19, and then provide them with face masks,” Wanyama continued.
“Because once it gets into the house, once one person has it, it spreads very quickly. So, the education part is extremely important.”
Apart from the employment, the foundation has also taken the initiative to educate children on how to wear the masks properly and how to protect themselves by washing their hands with hand sanitizer or soap and water.
“Once you teach them that and they’re aware of the consequences, they can manage to protect themselves well, and that’s our aim,” added Wanyama.
“I’m happy that UN-Habitat came along and helped me in this cause. We decided to join forces because UN-Habitat thought it was a good initiative and something that could benefit the people in our slums and help them be safe. We funded the project together in the end.”
The Wanyama Foundation have managed to construct homes for those who need it most during the Covid-19 period. so far, it has been able to build 10 homes for those with nowhere to lay their heads in Korogocho, with the eventual goal being the construction of 50 homes.
“In the ghetto, people who don’t have enough money to build homes, they sleep in holes while sitting up. That’s no good,” noted Wanyama.
“So, part of the Foundation’s mission now is to try and build homes, so they have somewhere to sleep and take shelter. We’ve built a few of them so far. It costs about $1,000 per home and we’ve built 10, but we’re still pushing for more.”
Wanyama joined Impact from Tottenham Hotspur in February and has shown consistently what he can provide in midfield both offensively and defensively, scoring his first goal for the club against Toronto FC last week.