The US government has granted Kenya Ksh5.3 billion ($50 million) to support the country’s response and recovery efforts during the Covid-19 pandemic.
The funds which will be channeled through the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) will be used to meet the immediate and longer-term challenges that COVID-19 is posing.
“The American people have always been generous to those in need around the world, and today Kenya is facing the compound challenges of Covid-19, flooding, and locusts.
"We are focusing on ensuring resources get to the counties and communities because Kenya’s communities are Kenya’s greatest asset in overcoming these challenges,” U.S. Ambassador Kyle L. McCarter stated.
In the fund, about Ksh1.5 billion Kenyan Shillings ($15 million) will be used to strengthen health and water systems and ensure effective communication and community engagement to ensure Kenyans are healthy.
Ksh2.5 billion will be used to ensure small businesses stay afloat. In protecting livelihoods, the focus will be on the agribusiness sector to maintain an operational food supply chain, and short-term emergency food as well as longer-term food security.
Ksh610 million Kenyan Shillings will go into ensuring children keep learning to read through distance learning.
“U.S. funds directly benefit Kenyans. We partner with the Kenyan government, NGOs, civil society and local organizations and institutions to support the Kenyan people. The U.S. requires our partners to adhere to rigorous reporting requirements and standards,” USAID Mission Director Mark Meassick added.
Through the support of the US, more than 1,600 health workers have been trained in 35 counties as personal protective equipment (PPE) was repurposed from the Ebola outbreak response to protect health care workers.
Additionally, labs are being provided with diagnostic and capacity-building support to meet the ever-increasing testing demand.
According to a new report by Research lab, AidData, the US government has contributed approximately Ksh9.3 Billion on average in bilateral assistance to Kenya annually over the last 5 years. The funding has been predominantly geared towards the health sector.