- MKU receives Sh2 million for distributing 10,000 water backpacks and treating 1,000 children infested with jiggers. Programme in Marsabit and Kilifi counties.
- Award money to be spent to buy and instal hand washing units around the country.
Mount Kenya University has received the prestigious global award for improving access to clean water and fighting jigger infestation.
The university received Sh2 million for distributing more than 10,000 water backpacks and treating some 1,000 children infested with jiggers in Marsabit and Kilifi counties.
The award was the Talloires Network Innovative Civic Engagement Award
The Talloires Network will sponsor a member of the faculty to the attend the Talloires Network Leaders Conference at Harvard University in September 2021.
Talloires executive director Lorlene Hoyt said on Friday MKU was recognised for improving health and sanitation and contributing to equality and inclusiveness.
MKU students, staff members and leaders initiated the community outreach programmes in 2016 in partnership with Partners for Care (PFC). The winning project was called 'Co-creating strategies to improve children's health and access to water in time of crisis'.
Hoyt said the anti-jigger and safe water campaigns using water backpacks have improved performance in schools in Marsabit county and Watamu area in Kilifi county. About 3,500 jigger-infested pupils were treated in Watamu.
Dr Peter Kirira, the acting principal of the College of Graduate Studies and Research, said the award money will be spent to purchase and instal hand washing units around the country to fight the spread of the coronavirus.
He oversees outreach programmes.
Other award recipients include Meridian Global University, Cameroon; Universidad Veracruzana, Mexico; National Autonomous University of Nicaragua and the University of Zimbabwe.
(Edited by V. Graham)