As part of our Positive Living project, TICAH began forming a team to work with positive support groups in Kenya to provide platform for learning and exchange regarding nutrition, treating and preventing opportunistic conditions, and natural medicines used alone or in combination with anti-retro viral treatment. Mary Elias met with groups in Nyanza, Central, and Rift Valley to gauge the interest in forming a national learning network on Positive Living. She found tremendous interest and enthusiasm for this idea. Support group members, both those on and off of conventional treatment, are hungry for more information about natural self-care.
Research in Mombasa
In partnership with the Society of Orphas Against AIDS Network (SOAAN) in Mombasa, TICAH conducted a small research project to learn more about on HIV and pregnancy, and the services available and choices positive women are making regarding their fertility.
TICAH USA Hosts Table at Institute for Health and Healing awards dinner
TICAH Kenya Board Chairman Onesmo ole-MoiYoi and Executive Director Mary Ann Burris, together with TICAH USA Board Chair Sylver Quevedo and Treasurer Neil Thompson hosted a table for twelve people in support of IHH in San Francisco.
After having discussions and making sketches together, the children painted public murals to share their thought and beautify the neighborhood schools.
Women with Disabilities
TICAH began co-hosting Our Bodies, Our Choices support groups with disabled women’s groups in Nairobi and Kisumu as part of our growing sexuality program. The groups now meet monthly.
Fortress of Hope
TICAH began to run Our Bodies, Our Choices support groups with young people through partnerships with Carolina for Kibera and Fortress of Hope in Nairobi. The young men’s groups in Kibera and the young women’s groups in Dandora will be the basis for the development of a new peer facilitation guide for young people who may or may not be sexually active and knowledgeable.
Sahaya Deaf Kenya
In partnership with Sahaya Deaf Kenya, Jedidah Maina of TICAH began to work with deaf women as part of Sahaya’s deaf empowerment and support services programs in Dandora and Kibera. The deaf women’s groups will meet on a bi-weekly for the coming months.
Jade Maina attended the International Sexuality, Gender and Rights Institute (SGRI) organised by CREA in Istanbul, Turkey.
TICAH visits Tai Sophia Institute in Baltimore
Director Mary Ann Burris and TICAH USA Board member Neil Thompson were hosted for a day of exchange at Tai Sophia Institute.
Children's Illnesses Care and Prevention Trainings
TICAH conducted four trainings on common illnesses affecting children in Viwandani and Korogocho communities. The trainings covered how to treat teething pains and toothaches, prevent and treat burns, ear infection, eye infection, genital thrush, skin problems, stomach problems and cholera.
Body Mapping Exhibition in US
TICAH’s body mapping exhibition opened at Bates College in Lewiston, Maine, USA. Dr. Mary Ann Burris, TICAH’s Director, and Kate Bond, TICAH USA Board member, attended the opening. The exhibition included maps from Thailand, India, Kenya previously exhibited at the University of London and the Toronto International HIV/AIDS Conference as well as new body maps painted in a TICAH/Art2Be workshop for cancer survivors from the Patrick Dempsey Center for Cancer Hope and Healing at Central Maine Medical Center. We learned that our body mapping process works very well in helping cancer survivors reflect and share their stories of illness and of healing. The Our Positive Bodies exhibition runs from September to December 2009.
TICAH’s “Valuing Traditional Medicine” Research team meets
Director Mary Ann Burris met with Prof. Laura Murphy and part of the team conducting the desk review, the first year of a two-year project aimed at learning how poor African households use and value herbal medicine, and the service and policy environments shaping those choices.
Changing Faces, Changing Spaces
Jedidah Maina of TICAH presented TICAH’s sexuality program, Mwili Yangu, Chaguo Langu (My Body, My Choice) and its emphasis on health, pleasure, and inclusiveness at the East African “Changing Faces, Changing Spaces” conference organised by Akiba Uhai in Nairobi.
Community Voices Forum
Mary Elias and Angela Okech were part of the organizing committee for the Community Voices Forum at the 8th International Conference on Urban Health, which was held in Nairobi. Over one hundred mayors from around the world, as well as urban planners, health and agriculture experts, and government representatives spent over a week in panel discussions and field visits. The Community Voices Forum brought TICAH’s experiences working with urban poor communities to bear on these global experiences and discussions.
NMK River and Sculpture Garden gets underway
TICAH and Kuona Trust began to work together to identify, repair, and sign existing sculpture along TICAH’s River Walk at the National Museums of Kenya. We have hopes of extending this work to include a peace installation. TICAH has begun to identify members of an advisory group to inform this work as it moves forward. River walk paths are being cleared, graded, and bricked.
Tree of Hope workshop
TICAH conducted new workshops in Korogocho and Viwandani to help young children talk about their problems and their dreams for the future. Over three days, children draw images representing their problems and take part in a ritual to help them discover new ways to see them or step away from them. They are then engaged in a playful and thoughtful process to build or paint a “tree of hope” to share their hopes and plans for the future and the support and nourishment they need to accomplish their dreams.
Egmont Trust visits Korogocho with TICAH
Clare Evans and Sally Woodcock, Trustees of Egmont Trust in the UK, visited TICAH and the Korogocho community. After their visit, Clare wrote to us: “Your unusual but, to me, very logical interventions around the use of foods and herbs, were fascinating—particularly in the Kenyan context. I will not forget watching the members of your group in Korogocho animatedly swapping remedies/’recipes. ...TICAH has unlocked a wealth of genuine practical knowledge, which can change lives.” See their blog on this on the Egmont Facebook page.
Community Day at National Museums of Kenya
TICAH hosted a Community Day and graduation ceremony for community trainees at the National Museum of Kenya in Nairobi where TICAH has created the Medicine Shield Garden. Fifty miale ya jamii (“community sparks”) from Korogocho and Viwandani attended as well as two local youth music and dance troupes, local healthcare providers, and other members of our extended team.
Support Group for Sex Workers' Rights
TICAH started sex workers rights group in Huruma. We were invited to work with a self-organized bar hostess group to help create a safe space for them to discuss their challenges, exchange ideas, information about sex and health, and organize around their rights.
Body Mapping Workshop for Sex Workers
TICAH organized a body mapping workshop with Art2Be for members of the Huruma Our Bodies, Our Choices support group.