AKDN and its institutional predecessors have been active
in Kenya for nearly a century. Many AKDN institutions began as voluntary organisations
but grew into strong institutions - the Aga
Khan Education Services (AKES) and the Aga
Khan Health Services (AKHS), among them - that opened their doors to all
East Africans and went on to make important contributions to the development
of the nation. The Aga
Khan Fund for Economic Development (AKFED) has also made key investments
in Kenyan industry and infrastructure, including electricity generation, agriculture,
media and tourism. In coming years, the Aga
Khan University (AKU) will expand its activities in health care and the
professional education of doctors, nurses and teachers.
The “brain drain” of medical professionals from developing to developed countries hampers the delivery of quality health programmes in many developing countries, but its cause is not simply the attraction of better paying jobs abroad. The quality of the equipment and the facilities, the availability of advanced training, and opportunities for research and career advancement also play a role in retention. More
AKDN and Lions Clubs Collaborate to Plant 10 Million Trees by 2014; Additional 15 Million to Be Planted
09 December 2013 - On 9 December, Serena Hotels staff, experts from the Aga Khan Foundation, volunteers from the Lions Clubs of Kenya and local people came together to plant 11,000 trees as part of a civil society initiative that is contributing to the Government of Kenya’s goal of 10 percent forest cover by 2030.
Agreement Clears Way for Aga Khan Trust for Culture to Begin Rehabilitation of Nairobi City Park
29 November 2012 - On 29 November 2012, Kenya’s Prime Minister, the Right Honourable Raila Odinga, joined His Highness the Aga Khan at the signing of an agreement to rehabilitate Nairobi City Park. The works will also improve the site’s amenities and public safety, as well as provide the necessary infrastructure to maintain the natural and cultural heritage of the park.
Serena Hotels Receive African Business Award 2012 for Contributions to Africa
22 June 2012 - Serena Hotels receives the 2012 African Business Award in the “Best Hospitality, Travel and Tourism in Africa” category. Serena Hotels was recognized for “branding its country or region as an attractive tourism destination in Africa, ultimately benefitting the African tourism industry and the continent as a whole”.
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A milestone in the work of the AKDN in East Africa was the Enabling Environment
Conference in Nairobi in 1986. This Conference was in many ways a watershed
in donor/government relationships in Africa. It highlighted the crucial
and complex relationships between civil society and development, between
effective legislation and individual enterprise and between macro-economic
policies and growth. It came at a time when structural adjustment programmes
were calling for somewhat simplistic macro-economic measures and helped
to highlight the complexities of development issues in Africa. The conference
also provided impetus to a shift in strategy for East Africa. By the early
1990s, a marked emphasis on strengthening civil society began to emerge.
The Conference had an important impact on the Aga
Khan Foundation (AKF) which had been active in Kenya since 1974, working
in health, education, rural development, civil society enhancement and the
environment (in 1996, the Foundation’s branches in Kenya, Tanzania
and Uganda merged under a common regional management and governance structure).
Today, several AKDN agencies contribute to Kenya’s development. AKES
provide 10,000 children with education. AKHS serves over 460,000 patients
every year in medical institutions throughout the region. AKF works to improve
the quality of life in resource-poor coastal areas. The Aga
Khan Academy in Mombasa is the first of an international network of
schools dedicated to excellence in education. The Aga
Khan Fund for Economic Development (AKFED), which has made bold but
calculated investments in economic projects ranging from power generation
to agri-businesses, operates some of Africa’s most successful companies,
including many listed on the Nairobi Stock Exchange. It also provides employment
to tens of thousands of Kenyans.