Stockholm 18th October 2016 – It is with great pleasure we announce that the Peepoople innovative brand and product will continue to be developed by International Aid Services (IAS) as from today’s date. Peepoople and IAS began the cooperation in year 2014. With the change in strategy from having a high-tech production in Stockholm, Sweden, towards a local production closer to the market, IAS became the first choice for Peepoople.
– The last years of partnership with IAS has been a game changer for us in Peepoople and we are excited to see how this free transfer of the brand to IAS can create an increased ownership amongst the target group that we intend to reach, says Anders Pihl, CEO of Peepoople since 2014.
Today, the Peepoople product is being distributed to more than 20,000 people (mainly women and children) living in the Kibera slum in Nairobi, Kenya. Peepoo is a personal, single-use, self-sanitising, fully biodegradable toilet that prevents faeces from contaminating the immediate area as well as the surrounding ecosystem. After use, Peepoo turns into valuable fertiliser that can improve livelihoods and increase food security.
– Fantastic to see this innovative product being used Worldwide and in particular Kenya. We believe that the product plays an important role in providing not only a sanitation solution but also in terms of protection of women and children using it in insecure areas, says Andreas Zetterlund, Head of Marketing & Fundraising Department at IAS.Photo: Patrik Eriksson
Two Schools in Dalarna fundraised more than 11 621 USD for IAS project with school lunches in Kenya. Many thanks to all the students for your great support!
Free Aid is a school concept where students at Söderbaumska School and Mosaik Free School together fundraise money by working at companies or at home for a day. Last year the students collected 7 946 USD for one of IAS projects in Ethiopia and this year they were determined to beat last year’s record. Carolina Sundin, principle at Mosaik Free School is proud to say that they did.
-We are very proud of our students who altogether collected 11 621 USD! The students have been very determined and they worked hard to reach the goal of beating last year’s record. The result was far beyond expectations, says Carolina.
Sponsoring school lunches
The students baked, cleaned, made the garden or worked at different companies. This year the money raised is channeled to IAS project in Tharaka, Kenya where Linas Food Basket (Linas Matkassse) together with IAS serve school lunches for school children. The students also organized a concert in the evening with music performances to which they invited family and friends and where the gate money went to the project.
-All parents know that children who are hungry have difficulties to concentrate. In Kenya 40 % of the country’s population lives in poverty, and many families are farmers depending on rain. When the rains fail and the crops die, it becomes extremely difficult for these people and they can barely feed their own family, says Mary Githiomi, Country Director, IAS Kenya.
School lunches will help children´s learning
When children are left out from breakfast and lunch, it’s hard for them to learn and concentrate.
-By providing children with school lunches, we make sure that they will continue their education. We have seen a major difference since the project started; the children have better health, they play more and they attend school, says Mary.
IAS is cooperating with different schools in Sweden to fundraise money for our projects. This spring we worked together with Åkerö School, Söderbaumska School and Free School Mosaik, all based in the north part of Sweden. Many thanks to The Åkerö School, who this year collected 1 730 USD.
If your school is interested to get involved with us, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Text: Rebecka Woods
Foto: Patrik ErikssonChildren performing in Mawenzusi, Tanzania to advocate for their rights
December 16th, 2015
One of IAS core areas is Inclusive Education and last week the International day of People with Disabilities was celebrated by IAS in Tanzania and Ethiopia. Here are some greetings from the field:
4 000 gathered in Ethiopia
More than 4 000 people participated in a colorful celebration to create awareness for people with disabilities in Hawassa, Ethiopia. The topic this year was: Inclusion matters, access and empowerment for people of all.
-IAS Ethiopia took the bigger role in the celebration using banners, brochures and t-shirts to create awareness to all stake holders. Dramas were performed by students with disabilities to advocate for their rights, says Eshetu Tilahun, Project leader IAS Ethiopia who also was part of the celebration.
Two students, one visually impaired (using Braille) and one intellectual impaired students inspired the attendants by presenting two big lessons using poem and reading from an article.
-The focus of their message was showing the participants how people with disabilities are effective and able if they get the chance to education. Another child, integrated to the regular class from IAS center, grade two, read one article to show how he improved his studies since he joined the project, says Eshetu.
Children performed in Tanzania
-We had a great day, altogether over 700 people were gathered, says Irene Shayo, Programme Manager, IAS Tanzania.
In Tanzania the event was organized by IAS Tanzania together with Free Pentecostal Church of Tanzania, Information Center on Disability and the authorities from the local government of Rukwa Region.
-The main reason for this day was to highlight the rights of persons with disabilities. We had children with impairments such as albinism from different schools that performed with for example poems. People were sad when they heard the stories about people being mistreated. But at the same time they were happy, since they saw that people with disabilities are capable, says Irene.
A speech was held by acting District Administrative Secretary, Oresta B Haule. He addressed the community on the rights of persons with disability and encouraged the whole district to have a budget for persons with disability.
-The celebration was important since it was a part of awareness creation. It was also a platform for persons with disabilities to raise their voices.
Text: Rebecka Woods
Photo: Eshetu Tilahun, Irene Shayo
December 3rd 2015, Somalia/Somaliland
IAS is doing a lot of work for persons with disabilities and today on International Day of Persons with Disabilities we want to higlight this storey from the field:
For ten years 17 year old Hodan from Somalia/Somaliland was pushed around in a wheelbarrow. Besides the discomfort, she was always dependent on someone to take her around. A wheelchair and a specially made toilet from IAS gave Hordan the opportunity to a dignified life.
Hodan Jama Osman is 17 years old and was born at Jaamalaaye village, Berbera town in Sahil Region. She is the first child in a family of eight, with her being the only one with a disability. Hodan is physically challenged and has never developed speech. However, she can respond to sound.
For ten years Hodan has been pushed around in a wheelbarrow by her mother.
– When Hodan grew older it became to heavy to carry her on the back so the wheelbarrow was the only option, says Hodans mother, Anab Haibe Idle.
Improved education since 1992
IAS established its presence in Somalia/Somaliland in 1992, and has over the years worked to improve the educational environment and infrastructure.
-In various parts of the country, teacher and community training programs, special needs education and skills training also have been developed, thanks to IAS work,” says Milward.
The primary purpose of distributing the assistive devices is to encourage children with disabilities to be in school.
-One of the excuses the parents have for not sending their children to school is the mobility, says Milward.
Wheelbarrow exchanged to wheelchair
And some weeks ago the life of Hodan and her mother were completely changed. For the first time in 17 years, Hordan received a wheelchair and her own toilet seat. This meant a lot of new freedom for her and a heavy burden was unloaded from both Hodan and her mother.
-Now she can have a dignified life. Before, she was dependent on someone else to move her around. Now that she has a wheelchair, she can push herself to where she needs to be, including going to the toilet. It´s also a great relief for me as I now have time to do other things, says Anab.
Disabled children hidden in homes
Anab is a member of IAS family network in the area where parents of children with disabilities can learn about how to care for their children and support each other.
-The network is very important since children with disabilities are particularly vulnerable to marginalization and exclusion. It is not uncommon that these children are being hidden in the homes since the parents believe the disability is a curse says Milward Mwamvani, IAS Acting Country Director in Somalia/Somaliland.
In these meetings, the parents also builds an organized platform from which they can lobby government to enhance the support of children with disabilities. As a result of these meetings, more and more families in the area are not hiding their children anymore.
-These meetings has meant a lot to me and it was also here I got information about the distribution of disability mobility devices, says Anab.
The devices are sourced by IAS’s local partner in Somaliland (Taakulo Somaliland Community – TASCO), through the Australian Doctors for Africa.
Text: Rebecka Woods
Photo: Milward Mwamvani
November 25th, 2015
Monday the 30th of November the Climate Change Conference (COP21) starts in Paris as an important step towards a future with reduced carbon dioxide. IAS is through the network EU-CORD part of the campaign Act Now for Climate Justice, an international petition led by the ACT Alliance, to call on world leaders to help the world’s poorest people cope with the impacts of climate change.
EU-CORD earlier published an article that highlighted the fact that it´s the world´s poorest and most vulnerable people who suffer the most from the impacts of climate change. One example of that is the vicious cycles of floods and droughts that are reducing people’s ability to make a living and forcing many people into poverty. IAS CEO Daniel Zetterlund was quoted in the article and he showed the link between humanitarian work and the need to combat the effects of climate change.
-International Aid Services (IAS) runs programmes in 10 African countries, mainly in the Horn of Africa/Eastern Africa and the Sahel region. Climate change is felt across these countries and affects the already vulnerable populations. One of the fundamental issues for appropriately addressing the effects of climate change is the need for a more robust, flexible and multi-year funding mechanism, Daniel Zetterlund said.
The petition will be formally presented to UN authorities, including Christiana Figueres, the Executive Secretary of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), in Paris on Saturday the 28th November, just before the start of the COP21 Climate negotiations.
Text: Rebecka WoodsFrom left: David, Conor and Leah have joined our Internship Program Steps for Life
November 4th, 2015, Sweden
Did you know IAS has an Internship Programme called Step for Life? Say hi to our new interns Leah, David and Conor to find out more about what you can do as an intern at IAS.
Leah, David and Conor are currently doing their master in International and Comparative Education at Stockholm University. They will contribute to IAS work during 3-5 months and they are all excited to gain expereince in the humanitarian field. IAS is collaborating with institutions such as Stockholm University and the Institute of International Education (IIE). If you are interested to join or have any further questions, send an e-mail to Andreas Zetterlund: email@example.com
Conor Diamond, intern at Programme Department
-I will be providing programme support to the Humanitarian Coordinator as well as Programme Managers in the field, across a range of humanitarian projects. I look forward to gaining a practical insight into the work of an international NGO, as well as using my experience to contribute to the valuable work IAS does across the development spectrum.
David Kunyu, intern at Finance Department
-I look forward to collaborate closely with the Finance department respectively programme department and hopefully my work will contribute towards an attainment of the vision and mission of IAS. I am very excited to be a part of the team here, and I am looking forward to learning, growing and contributing to IAS work however I can.
Leah Kellgren, intern at Policy and Quality Department
– I will be working closely with the Policy and Quality department, examining IAS internal policies as well as policy frameworks followed by other humanitarian organizations. I have always had a personal interest in working in international aid and development, and have been aiming towards a career in that field through my studies. I heard about the opportunity to join IAS and was intrigued by their projects in Inclusive Education and Community Development.
Text & photo: Rebecka WoodsFrom left: Victoria, Abigail, Eddah, Immaculate and Teresia are now able to support themselves
October 14th, 2015
Some years ago these single mothers from Nakuru were living a hard life in either abusive marriages or working as prostitutes. But thanks to The Kenya Food Basket Program, their lives are today completely different.
The Kenya Food Basket Program is a collaboration between IAS and the Swedish food delivery company Linas Matkasse. It´s a support project that help people to have a long-term economic growth. The beneficiaries are people living with HIV/Aids, elderly, persons with disabilities and single parents.
– The beneficiaries receives a food basket once a month during 18 months so that they can increase personal savings. They are also part of a self-help group to strengthen their self-sufficiency and economic empowerment, says Susan Kiambi, Programme Manager IAS Kenya and responsible for Kenya Food Basket Program.
Rescued from the street
The group of young single mothers consists of 20 members who are between 23-27 years old. Most of them have been rescued from either abusive marriages or from Nakuru streets where they worked as prostitutes.
-In Nakuru we are in partnership with a crisis centre in a local church which rescues young women in difficulties. These women go through counseling and are part of support groups where they meet and share experiences. After they have been rehabilitated, they are trained in different income generating activities, says Susan Kiambi.
Starting their own businesses
The young mothers have been part of IAS Food Basket Program during 18 months and today they stand on their own. Some of them have gone back to school to attain skills such as tailoring or bead work classes and some of them are running their own small business.
-I met with them several times and they all have a very positive attitude. One girl named Eddah, is selling second hand clothes and another girl Teresia sells potatoes to a wholesale company. Some of them also work as casual laborers like washing clothes in some of the hotels in Nakuru. They all support each other and believe they will manage on their own even when the Food Basket Program is finished.
Text: Rebecka Woods
Photo: Susan Kiambi