SHOFCO is the 2021 winner of the VIO Community Engagement Award

Shining Hope for Communities (SHOFCO) received the 2021 Community Engagement Award from the Volunteer Involving Organization (VIO). Presenting the award, VIO Society General Secretary and National Coordinator, Fred Sadia, said the award was given to SHOFCO for involving communities at the grassroots level in its programs.

SHOFCO currently uses an overhead pipeline system and has installed a water treatment facility in Kibera that can pump up to 300,000 liters of water at a time. Water is pumped to overhead pipes that connect to various water kiosks in the slums. The water is then channeled to 24 kiosks stationed at strategic points throughout the slums, solving the problem of water scarcity in the area.

“SHOFCO programs belong to grassroots people. We chose the organization for this award because of its programs that directly touch the lives of the most vulnerable people in slums. These include youth and women empowerment programs,” said Sadia, adding that SHOFCO’s water program has benefited the people of Kibera and Mathare.

In his remarks, SHOFCO Founder and CEO Kennedy Odede said this upon receiving the award: “Volunteering is power. There are things money can’t buy. When you do something you don’t get paid for, that’s humanity. The reason we have a solid foundation at SHOFCO is that we started with nothing. We were just volunteers in the community.

Odede said he paid school fees for children he did not know and voluntarily bought food for people on the streets.
He added that he started the Shofco Urban Network (SUN) program in 2013 as a community networking platform that empowers people to voluntarily solve problems.

Consolata Odhiambo, founding member of SUN, echoed Odede’s sentiments saying, “I have seen SHOFCO go from nothing to something. It’s not about money, but about the love of the community and we thank Odede for the initiative.