Kenya | ActionAid UK


We’ve been working in Kenya since 1974.

We focus on supporting local women’s groups who stop women and girls from being abused and make sure survivors are heard, treated and have the backing of the law.

Why we work in Kenya

Kenya is the largest and most advanced economy in east and central Africa. Yet nearly half of the population live below the poverty line.

Women and girls in Kenya do not enjoy the same rights as men. They’re often denied an education and the right to own land.

Many are also subjected to domestic violence, sexual exploitation, and harmful practices such as female genital mutilation (FGM). Although FGM is illegal in Kenya, in highly traditional areas up to 98% of girls could be at risk.

  • 43
    43% of people live below the poverty line.
  • 98
    In highly traditional areas, 98% of girls could be at risk of FGM.
  • 26
    26% of girls are married before their 18th birthday.

Hundreds of thousands of children in Kenya are malnourished due to the effects of living in extreme poverty, and many children die before their fifth birthday.

Recent droughts left millions of people in need of food aid and flooding in the Rift Valley is common, displacing thousands of people and destroying crops.

What we do in Kenya

Protecting women from violence

We train women’s groups to take up cases of violence against women and girls by working proactively with the police, health workers, courts and women lawyers.

Our work with women’s groups, girls’ clubs and rescue centres is helping to stamp out domestic violence and abuse, forced child marriage and harmful traditional practices such as female genital mutilation (FGM).

Tackling period taboos

We’re supporting local girls’ clubs that provide information about periods, sex and pregnancy, so girls are better informed about their bodies. We work alongside local women’s groups to tackle period poverty and help girls in some of the poorest communities in Kenya access sanitary products. By giving girls the resources they need to manage their periods with dignity, we’re helping to break cycles of poverty and challenge gender inequality. We’re supporting women and girls to say #MyBodyIsMine and ensuring their periods don’t hold them back. 

Ending hunger

We’ve set up hundreds of local farmers’ groups and trained them in modern farming methods. We help communities grow drought-tolerant crops and share their knowledge so they don’t have to go hungry. During times of drought we support the poorest communities through feeding programmes, and our innovative farming and water harvesting projects help families build long-term resilience to drought.

Our response to the East Africa food crisis

Since the onset of the crisis in February 2017, ActionAid Kenya has supported approximately 93,330 people​ suffering from the drought. Our response has included the distribution of cash and food transfers, as well as setting up school feeding programmes

How we’re changing lives for good in Kenya

Through ActionAid girls’ clubs and rescue centres, 6,000 women and girls have been reached directly and 60,000 indirectly. Read stories of women and children we’ve helped.


Photos: Jennifer Huxta/Actionaid, ActionAid