The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation will set up a regional office in Nairobi, Co-chair Bill Gates has revealed.
The regional office will expand and enhance the Foundation’s work in healthcare, agriculture and ICT in Kenya. Gates was speaking after a meeting with President William Ruto at State House Nairobi.
On his part, President Ruto lauded the foundation for its work and impact in Kenya saying, “we appreciate the Gate’s Foundation support for crucial initiatives in Kenya’s health, agriculture and ICT sectors. We look forward to more collaboration on food security and universal health coverage.”
Meanwhile, Gates has also commended the President on the soon-to-be-launched Hustler Fund adding that it will financially empower ordinary Kenyans to generate income and create wealth.
President Ruto in turn said that Kenya was committed to allocating more resources to community health workers to enhance primary healthcare.
Earlier, Gates who is also the co-founder of Microsoft visited Makueni County to establish the impact of Primary Health Care.
The billionaire who was accompanied by the Makueni Governor Mutula Kilonzo Jnr visited Makueni County Referral Hospital and Kathonzweni Level 3 hospital where he met medical staff and community health volunteers who gave an account of what they do.
In Kenya, the foundation focuses on areas of overlap between their expertise and the government’s priorities under the Kenya Vision 2030 development blueprint and the country’s United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, which include primary health care and gender equality.
The foundation also works with partners to empower people in the lowest-income communities to improve their livelihoods and lift themselves out of poverty.
Further, their efforts include expanding the use of digital financial services and payments and ensuring that these services meet the needs of low-income Kenyans and small and medium-sized enterprises, improving the agricultural productivity of smallholder farmers and helping them weather the effects of climate change, expanding access to family planning services and products, and improving economic opportunities for women.
The foundation works across Africa from its regional headquarters in Johannesburg and offices in Abuja and Addis Ababa.