Kijiji yet’s initiative is one of the more interesting COVID-19 deployments in Kenya, looking into grass-root action and awareness in this era of Covid-19.

Kijiji Yeetu was registered as an association to activate village resources, knowledge, and aspirations towards development under devolved governance in Kenya. They aim to inspire change, by building an ecosystem of smart villages for future generations of young people, women, and their families in Kenyan counties and beyond.

Their deployment seeks to identify digital village champions promoting the notion of remote-working and social-distancing as well as establishing their impact within villages and communities during this season and into the future. They have engaged in a process of inspiring COVID-19 conversations and participation through social media and other digital applications.

Using Ushahidi's platform, the Kijiji Yeetu deployment is crowdsourcing and mapping positive news, stories, and incidents that increase hope in the fight against COVID-19 in Kenya. The information illustrates actual local community scenarios while also attempting to combat the plethora of misinformation and rumours. Ultimately they hope the information gleaned from their map will inform government and practitioners action in dealing with this pandemic and any other in future.

From this effort so far, Kijiji Yeetu has enhanced collaborative support and expertise from a range of organisations such as the United States International University-Africa, Kenya flying Labs, Media Force Africa and Usalama Force. The feedback has also inspired their participation in one of the global Openideo COVID-19 challenges, seeking inspirational and positive news during this season that is inundated with constant reports of infections, death, fear and falsehoods. The increased communication of positivity is designed to generate hope for Kenyan communities as they navigate the challenges brought about by the pandemic. There is documented follow-up with Design 4 Development through the Internet Society-Kenya Chapter on Covid-19, that was inspired to share our village stories. Kijiji Yeetu has also been listed as a key organisation in the Data Collaboratives portal as an entity that supports village efforts to fight Covid-19.

Going forward Kijiji Yeetu hopes to enhance its partnerships with other organisations seeking solutions for the effects of pandemic in the following areas:

  • Volunteers in training of trainers for youth on COVID-19 through e-mentorship and digital library sources to enrich their work and experiences.
  • Startup funding to enable their organisation facilitate its operations and services during the COVID-19 crisis
  • Media and communication solutions to improve their branding through effective use of the information portal and online advisories regarding the pandemic

Beyond the pandemic, they look forward to building partnerships to support villages and other local communities on e-education, e-agriculture and digital economy, governance, security and safety for women, children, and youth.