Plus Dane celebrates Kenyan friendship

19.01.2012

Plus Dane Group and members of Liverpool’s Kenyan community are celebrating the success of a partnership aimed at helping people at home and abroad.

Plus Dane Group and members of Liverpool’s Kenyan community are celebrating the success of a partnership aimed at helping people at home and abroad.

Community leaders have accepted a cheque for £3,000 from the housing association, which was raised following a day of fund-raising events.

The cash will be used to help a village stricken by the recent drought and famine in East Africa. Not only providing immediate food and medicine relief but also training on making the best use of scarce resources.

Recently the group, which is responsible for some 13,000 homes in Merseyside and Cheshire, has worked with members of the Yemeni and Pakistani communities on a range of educational and artistic projects in Liverpool aimed at celebrating cultural identity and encouraging friendship.

Baiba Mjidho, chair of the Kenya Community Association, said: "Both of our organisations exist to help people reach their maximum potential and it is our hope that we can strengthen this collaboration. The staff are very good, people like (engagement officer) Maureen Chendo are doing great work at building bonds between people of different cultures."

Gilbert Ngatia, programmes director, added: "Plus Dane are a godsend. For so long we felt hidden away but with Plus Dane’s help we are coming out into the open - we feel we have a voice."

Chair of Plus Dane, Cllr Richard Kemp, who will shortly visit East Africa on as part of an Local Government Association initiative aimed at encouraging participation in politics and effective local government, said: "We help people who come to the city from all over the world, often fleeing very difficult circumstances. Part of our mission is to make them feel welcome and integrated but we also encourage people to honour their roots."

The fundraising events, which took place as part of Black History Month, were supported by a range of organisations including Riverside Housing Association, the Workers Education Association, LHT, LMH, Merseytravel, the police and others.

The Kenyan Community Association exists to improve the quality of life of Kenyans and the wider community in Merseyside through education, health and well-being initiatives, economic empowerment, sport and social events.