Promoting Philanthropy

KCDF works to encourage the growth and promotion of organized giving in Kenya. The goal is to move communities and the wider Kenyan public from the mindset of depend­ing on external resources and to begin to fund their own development. Creating structures which facilitate such giving is essen­tial for continuity and consistency. Concurrent to promoting local philanthropy, KCDF is also working with Government and like-minded organisations in the area of philan­thropy to establish an appropriate policy and legal framework for local philanthropy.

Many Kenyans responded in a big way through what has now come to be known as ‘crisis philanthropy’, offering to donate materials in kind, money and even land. This demonstrated that thousands of Ke­nyans are willing to help where structures and mechanisms for accountability are in place. A recent study by Ufa­dhili, a local organization that promotes Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR), showed that a total of US $ 1 billion was raised locally in one year to help communities who were displaced or negatively affected by the post election violence, and even more recently, Kenyans came together to raise near a Billion shillings to rescue starving Kenyans during the Kenyans for Kenya initiative.

While KCDF applauds such responses, it wishes to encourage Kenyans’ attitude towards continuous and organized systems of giving towards initiatives that eradicate root causes of problems. We acknowledge that our African culture is based on the core spirit of society, “Ubuntu” which at its heart is philanthropic and our nation Kenya was build on a spirit of “Harambee” which also recognizes the power of coming together, but in the face of many challenges, unscrupulous campaigns, political uncertainty and more, Kenyans need to be reminded to preserve this dying culture of giving to worthy causes.

In its strategic plan, KCDF seeks to harness the growing numbers of youth, their energy and intellectual capacity to galvanize community-based action for develop­ment priorities that not only attract them to give back to the community but also provide them with an opportunity to drive their own development agenda. This is seen as a succession plan in key sec­tors of agriculture and agribusiness where older generations remain key players.

KCDF has been on the fore-front in pushing for policies that will make philanthropy favorable across the East African region, most notably, the Tax Incentives. KCDF’s CEO Janet Mawiyoo has been the Treasurer for the East African Associations of Grant Makers, which has served to bring together in synergy the efforts of grant-making organizations in East Africa. KCDF has also played a crucial role in the formative stages of the development of the African Grant-Makers Network.

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