SOUTHERN KWALE, Kenya – Today is International Volunteer Day, celebrating the efforts of people across the globe to make others’ lives better. It’s a great cause. Here’s how volunteer work is making a big difference in Kenya, in a programme supported by Nokia.
Plan International together with Nokia and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Finland are running a universal birth registration project in Kenya’s southern Kwale district.
Birth registration provides children with an official identity, which is the foundation for child rights and a key to accessing essential services, such as health and schooling. However, today only half of Kenyan children are registered.
The process is currently slow and expensive, the registration offices far away, and the awareness amongst parents of the need to register their children is low.
The Nokia Data Gathering application coupled with mobile phones is used by volunteer teams that visit the more remote parts of the community. The results of the project have been encouraging. As Kenya is planning on digitizing its entire birth register and demanding a registration from all, the need for a nation-wide, easy-to-use registration process is great.
Listen to our interview with Ali to hear about the situation on ground in Kenya, as well as the challenges and the successes of the project.
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image credit: Plan Finland