Nyumbani was founded in 1992 by the late Father Angelo D’Agostino, a physician, psychiatrist and Jesuit priest. Nyumbani is the result of his dream to address the challenges caused by the tragic loss of an entire generation to the AIDs pandemic in Kenya. His search for practical and sustainable solutions to one of the worst tragedies in human history has gained attention worldwide.
Nyumbani’s Executive Director Sister Mary Owens, who shared Father D’Agostino’s dream from the beginning, provides leadership and inspiration to a talented group of professionals and volunteers who work across Nyumbani’s programs.
We rely on the support of donations from around the world. Non-profit boards have been created in Kenya, the United Kingdom, the United States, Italy, Ireland, and Spain to support Nyumbani and assist in building sustainable communities for children infected with and affected by the HIV/AIDS pandemic.
The Right to Education
Prior to 2004 Kenyan children with HIV+ were banned from attending schools and were often treated as outcasts by society. Nyumbani took the unprecedented step of taking the Kenyan government to court to fight for the right for children with HIV to attend school. It was a landmark victory which not only changed the lives of the children cared for by Nyumbani but all HIV+ children in Kenya.
Have a look here to see the BBC’s coverage http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/africa/3380139.stm
Key accomplishments at Nyumbani
1992: First facility in Kenya for HIV-positive children in Nairobi.
1998: Nyumbani Medical Diagnostics Laboratory opened. It is one of the most sophisticated of its kind in all of Africa and serves the public at below market prices.
1998: Lea Toto, one of the first community-based holistic care programs to reach HIV positive children living in the Nairobi slums, began operations with private funding.
2004: Nyumbani challenged the Kenyan Supreme Court to reverse the policy banning HIV-positive children from public schools.
2004: Ground was broken and construction immediately began on Nyumbani Village, the first bio-friendly, Kenyan village designed for those who have lost family members to HIV/AIDS. Many in the surrounding rural communities were trained and employed in construction.
2006: The Hotcourses Primary School was opened by Jeremy Hunt MP. It was funded and continues to be supported by the Hotcourses Foundation.
2008: Nyumbani began collaboration with the Kenya Legal and Ethical Issues Network on HIV/AIDS focused on advocacy to gain rights to a birth certification for abandoned children and safeguarding their inheritance.
2008: The village Polytechnic was opened which offered vocational/technical training for children after primary school.
2008: Nyumbani Village began a reforestation project to plant 500 acres of indigenous Melia trees on semi-arid, unproductive land over the next 10 years.
2010: Lawson High School opened in the village, which allowed children to continue their secondary education within the village.
2010: The Genetic Analyzer acquired by the Nyumbani Diagnostic Laboratory provided the first hard evidence of the need for third-line ARVs in Kenya.
2011: Nyumbani Medical Diagnostics Laboratory opened a new, self-sufficient, state-of-the-art facility with expanded capacity, resources, and accreditation to replace the original diagnostic laboratory.
2011: 2011 Index of Global Philanthropy published by the Hudson Institute, Centre for Global Prosperity, featured Nyumbani as an outstanding example of private initiative in responding to the needs of the developing world.
2011: A USAID Assessment of Nyumbani Village finds that Nyumbani has become a world leader in community-based solutions that transform the lives of the people living with HIV/AIDS.
2014: Nyumbani Diagnostic Laboratory reaching the stature of ISO 15189: 2007 accreditation.