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Amara’s death makes me live for other kids

The death of her six and half-months-old daughter in March 2012 was a wake up call for Alice Kerubo Kibagendi.

Her daughter and only child whom she and her husband Antony Kibagendi had named Amara died after choking on food.

The pain of losing a child under such circumstances drove Alice into starting the Amara Initiative barely two months after her death.

“This was the only way I could console myself and also help other mothers by training them and their househelps on basic first aid skills,” she said.

She recalled the sad event when her daughter choked on food and was later pronounced dead on arrival at the hospital.

She said her neighbours could not help  to save the little girl.

Alice blames herself for being ignorant because she had never thought of taking the househelp for any first aid training.

“I had never thought of taking my housegirl to any training and considering that she had taken care of Amara for three months, I had confidence in her and couldn’t imagine such a thing  ever happening,”  said the founder of Amara Initiative.

Cost of sessions

Alice organises the training in partnership with the Kenya Red Cross Society and AAR once a month in different estates across the city.

The classes which take place at hired venues, start at 8am to 5pm. Participants  pay  Sh2,500.

“We teach them on how to do cardiopulmonary resuscitation to children and adults and give them certificates at the end of the training,” she added.

They also offer first aid skills on drowning, burns, bites and stings, fractures, bleeding, poisoning and allergies.

Amara Initiative also seeks to encourage parents who may have gone through such experience.

“We seek to establish support groups and provide counseling to parents who have lost their children through such accidents and/or illnesses” she said.