In March 2019, Safaricom Foundation launched the Children with Diabetes programme. In partnership with the Garissa County, the foundation constructed and equipped a child friendly diabetes center at the Garissa Referral Hospital – a facility not only meant to cater to residents of the county, but also neighboring Kitui, Wajir, Tana River and Isiolo.
Garissa County Referral Hospital has now officially opened the children’s diabetes management center which Safaricom foundation invested KES 12 million in. It has been furnished with modern equipment for diabetes detection and management.
The 3-year Children with Diabetes programme is being implemented in partnership with the County Government of Garissa and Pastoralists Girls Initiative. The programme targets children and youth under the age of 21 years and focuses on addressing early detection, comprehensive care and health care system strengthening as well as setting up model child-friendly diabetes clinics.
The World Health Organisation estimates that 26% of bed occupancy in hospitals in Kenya consist of diabetic patients while 50 % of kidney patients are found to be suffering from diabetes.
An estimated 478,000 Kenyans are living with diabetes 60% of whom are unaware while It is estimated that the number of children living with diabetes is increasing at a rate of 3.5 % annually.