No more hard work without play for the Children of Malindi

Malindi Education & Development Association

Welcome to Malindi, a relatively small town in the coast of Kenya and home to the Malindi Bay.

Being a beautiful and one of the oldest towns in Kenya, Malindi’s tourism industry thrives. The town is full of nice crisp sandy beaches and perfect weather all year round. Due to the lure of money in the booming tourism industry, many children drop out of school before the age of 12, to become, if lucky, hoteliers, tour guides, drivers or casual laborers in the industry. But the majority of the uneducated youths end up in the illegal sex and human trafficking business, many of them in the false promise that one day they will strike it rich. Nationally, Malindi ranks amongst the poorest performing regions academically.

It is against this back drop that the Malindi Education & Development Association (MEDA) a local community based organization works.

MEDA has since 1997, worked to promote education in Malindi. They do this by providing scholarships to students who wish to go to school but lack school fees, and also by improving the standards of education and providing support for the training of teachers. MEDA realized that for Malindi to succeed in the education front, they needed to focus on education from the elementary level.

Through scientific research, MEDA learnt that one of the reasons leading to under-performance was because most children in the predominantly Muslim community, missed the opportunity to attain any form of Early Childhood Development Education. This meant that by the time the children reached upper primary level, they struggled with basic reading and writing skills.

After embarking on promotion of Education for more than eight years with considerable success through a number of MEDA’s interventions, MEDA realized that an important aspect in enabling a conducive environment for children was missing - Play!

MEDA thus saw the need to find a solution for this issue. When the Pamoja4Change call for proposals was advertised , MEDA realized that this was the opportunity they had been waiting for. A local resident had donated a prime beach front plot to the public earlier to ensure that the locals accessed the beach given that most of the beach land had been privatized. MEDA being the most respected community organization, was given part of the land, and it is here that they decided to set up the very first public playground for children.

In addition to the land donation, MEDA was able to raise money for the playgroung through the Pamoja4Change match fund while embarking on h local philanthropy drive to raise money to establish the play ground.

One Strategy that MEDA has used successfully to raise resources locally, is to target the holy month of Ramadhan. MEDA has continue to organiz community dinners over the years, bringing together prominent leaders of the community and other faithful to fundraise for local development projects. This year, MEDA identified the playground project as the lead project for the local fundraising which was able to attract a total of Ksh. 4.1 Million from the community members

The playground was opened and children from the larger Malindi County continue to enjoy this facility

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