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Strengthen , increase risk reduction messages and community action to address needs of vulnerable women MSMES due to shocks of COVID-19

Virtual business and emotional support where opportunities for face to face interaction are limited for vulnerable women in Nairobi slums

Photo of Keneth Mitambo
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Since the emergence of COVID-19 in Kenya , many businesses run collaboratively or individually by vulnerable women in Nairobi urban informal settlements have collapsed , defaulted loans, registered with CRB ,facing enormous interest rates due to defaulted loans leading to their families sleeping hungry due to loss of livelihoods opportunities. Already cases of suicide ,depression has been reported and many of the vulnerable women are finding it hand to survive during the pandemic and the post COVID-19 shock will be worse. STAMP CLEANTECH ltd through partnership with Royal Great Widows and orphans foundation has currently increased delivery of business and emotional support through web-based platforms ( Taro works and sales-force) and where opportunities allow for limited face to face interaction  have established communities of care through Community health workers to enable the women talk to a neighbor or colleagues for both business and emotional support.  The intervention is two prolonged as follows 

SCREAMIT OUT :-  This has been currently on virtual platform and intentions to have a toll free call line through partnerships is being pursued to allow the vulnerable women to experience 

  1. Virtual business grieving which is anonymous, where the women are able to say difficult things without being judged by anyone through anautomated chat-bot 
  2. Professional business coaches and counselors offering tips on livelihoods and business survival life-skills, trauma counseling and psycho-social support through  observing queries coming in on SCREAM IT OUT platform and creating virtual answers..
  3. Family space to have fun, document the journey through creating a virtual challenge with an animated dummy that enables creation of localized solutions by individuals and families.


  1. Trainers on SCREAM IT OUT chatbot to the affected vulnerable women
  2. Monitoring impact of covid-19 within their community and particularly on vulnerable women livelihoods , identify localized solutions and link the women for quick interventions. 
  3. The CHV collect data through Taroworks and sync into the support systems
  4. Teaching women and children on how to make masks and sanitizers ,marketing the same among the local communities and other vulnerable women at an affordable cost as an alternative livelihood venture.
  5. Since they are locally based and leave within the vicinity of the vulnerable women and themselves also being part of the vulnerable group offer coordinated psycho-social support in critical situations 
  6. Linkage with Health service provider, CSOs and religious institutions for further assistance.
  7. Peer to peer support with another or other women going through the same and how they are navigating the current COVID-19 shocks on livelihoods and emotional health and building post covid peer support systems

What is the need are you focusing on?

The unpredictable consequences of the pandemic and the restrictive measure imposed by the Kenya government have negatively impacted vulnerable women by

1.Destroying pre-existing community coping structures ,social systems leading to displacement from business premises and housing

2.Increased GBV and STIs due to sexual coercion in exchange for food ,rent 

3.Social disorder which has translated to breaking down of social systems , where widows support groups congregate and  chit chat to ventilate happens.

4.Defaulting on live saving drugs for chronically sick since they can nolonger afford transport to the health facilities , good nutrition which was possible when running their own small micro businesses.

5.Compromised growth milestones and immune system for infants born of the vulnerable women

6.Alcohol and substance abuse due to loose of livelihoods ventures as a coping mechanism

Which type of submission are you sharing?

  • Sharing an actual pivot your organization has already made

Describe the business pivot or adaptation in 3-4 sentences.

Provide risk communication and community engagement strategies and strengthen risk reduction messages and action, address needs of widows including specific needs of women in distress due to depleted livelihoods through a SCREAM IT OUT platform and establish communities of care for support group through communities own initiatives. This will ensure vulnerable women and particularly widows have access to business grieving support , GBV / stress prevention and response service, including GBV / livelihoods survivors services – such as temporary shelters, safe housing, financial support within their communities and able peers

Do you plan to implement this solution?

  • Yes

Describe the impact that this solution will create in the world.

Resilient women with emotional health that enables them face the post covid-19 shocks on their small businesses and innovatively reemerge the business. Reduction in depression , sexual coercion , STIs and suicide rates amongst the vulnerable communities since businesses will thrive again. Restoration of emotional and business health through a peer to peer and community coordinated strategy. Peers and community as a natural support for community challenges. Strengthened community designed coping mechanisms for livelihoods and psychosocial support.

What is the name of your business or organization?


What does your business/company do? Whose needs does your business/company address? Who do you serve?

STAMP CLEANTECH LTD has been a leader in developing innovation and processes focusing at transforming lives of vulnerable populations in Kenya for over 7 years. We take a holistic approach to Health, energy, water innovations and enterprise development in order to catalyze inclusive economic growth that doesn’t leave anyone behind. Our approach is Human centered where the end user is at the core of the design and execution. STAMP serves the most vulnerable particulary focussing on women and children in ofd areas through Partnership with like minded institutions like Royal Great widows and orphans foundation. &

What is your profession?

A serial entrepreneur and innovator in Health and clean energy and water through collaborative community engagement

Where are you located (country)?


Where are you located (region)?

  • Eastern Africa

What industry is your business/company in?

  • Activist/Community Leader/Organizer
  • Entrepreneur/Investor

How many people does your business/company employ?

  • 0-10

How old is your business/company?

  • 5-10 years old

Which classification describes your organization/business?

  • Social Enterprise

What kind of stakeholders and partnerships are needed to pursue this solution?

  • Funding- Grants
  • Stakeholders/Partnerships- NGOs
  • Stakeholders/Partnerships- Private Sector
  • Stakeholders/Partnerships- Government
  • Stakeholders/Partnerships- Civil Society Groups
  • Stakeholders/Partnerships- Grassroots/Community Groups

Do you need help building partnerships and finding partners?

  • Yes

If Yes to the above, please share 1-2 sentences describing the specific help you desire.

Counselling and psychosocial support organisations targetting vulnerable women. Linkages with CSOs and government institutions for health and social support. Social impact investors who can give grants for revival of the women livelihoods.

What do you think are the main barriers to implementing this solution?

Apathy due to defranchised and displacement of majority of the vulnerable women as they sought refuge with relatives and peers. Misinformation and false hopes created by many donors who are passing and uncordinated in their response targetting the same groups. Access to more professional who are needed for business counselling and emotional therapy for the vulnerable women. Reestablishing contact and rebuilding blocks of hope in a hopeless situations

If you are currently working on a pivot, what have you learned so far?

Importance of designing solutions with end users and stakeholders make them viable and sustainable. Community social networks holds solutions and are innovative in different ways. No community or society has same way in addressing challenges , solving and adapting , the need for tolerance due to diverse value system , social cultural and religious beliefs are at the heart of acceptance of solutions.

Are you aware of any open source efforts, hackathons or other collaborative efforts related to your solution? Are you participating in these efforts?

There are currently many open source efforts but they are limited in support , lack clarity and majority are not people centered and have no clear pathway. I and my team arent participating in them.

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