The problem with darkness

After darkness falls there is very little light to be seen across Kibera. Those who have electricity don’t waste it on lighting the exterior of their homes, or the street. Just a few lonely lampposts can be seen toward the edges of the slum. So Kibera can be very dark at night.
Darkness brings danger. It’s why people rarely use the public toilets after dark and why the ‘streets’ of Kibera empty rapidly once the sun has set, with residents preferring the safety of home or the bright lights and entertainment of the many bars.

Danger at Future Stars

Recently, whilst checking that everything at the centre was secure for the night, a member of staff was attacked by a group of youths carrying a metal pipe. He was outside the main door of the centre but, in the darkness, danger lurked. A few broken ribs later he had been relieved of his phone and other perceived ‘valuables’.

A view of the exterior of the Future Stars buildings

An assessment of lighting at Future Stars

External lighting at Future Stars was not keeping the staff safe. That had become painfully apparent.
Upon assessing the situation, it was discovered that the children were unable to leave the centre’s buildings after dark due to the lack of lighting. They were unable to use the toilet block or to simply cross from one building to the other.

The solution – new lighting

Installing wiring at Future Stars ©Chaffinch
Installing wiring at Future Stars ©Chaffinch

It seemed that rapid action was necessary to improve the situation.
Thanks to the large available workforce in Kibera, it didn’t take long to find someone to do the job just a few days after we were alerted to the problem.
Wiring was added to the exterior of the Future Stars buildings as well as the lower compound where the toilet block can be found. Each of the toilet ‘cubicles’ were also included.

Light fittings and bulbs were purchased within Kibera (always concentrating on supporting the local community with all purchases made by Chaffinch) and installed without delay.
The work took just one day and Future Stars lit up as soon as darkness fell.

Installing wiring at Future Stars ©Chaffinch
Lightbulbs and Light Fittings ©Chaffinch
Lightbulbs and Light Fittings ©Chaffinch

It seemed that rapid action was necessary to improve the situation.
Thanks to the large available workforce in Kibera, it didn’t take long to find someone to do the job just a few days after we were alerted to the problem.
Wiring was added to the exterior of the Future Stars buildings as well as the lower compound where the toilet block can be found. Each of the toilet ‘cubicles’ were also included.

Light fittings and bulbs were purchased within Kibera (always concentrating on supporting the local community with all purchases made by Chaffinch) and installed without delay.
The work took just one day and Future Stars lit up as soon as darkness fell.

Safety at Future Stars

The new lighting will make a huge difference to both staff and children at Future Stars.

  • The staff will be safe from attack when doing their routine checks at night.
  • The children can access the toilet block safely after dark.
  • The area around the centre will become less attractive to those searching for easy targets and this will hopefully eliminate many forms of crime in the vicinity of Future Stars.
  • The residential children will know that Future Stars is a place of refuge and safety and can feel secure in their home.

Funding for urgent work

We often discover needs that ought to be met with a degree of urgency. This leaves us without the time to launch any sort of appeal to our supporters for help and leaves us reliant on our reserves. These reserves are not without limit.
You can help us today to ensure all important and urgent needs can be met without delay. Maybe your donation will buy something to improve safety, or medicine for a sick child, or a pair of school shoes. Whatever the need, Chaffinch is committed to being there and we can’t do it without you.

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Donation Total: £3.00

Thanks!

Thanks!

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