NAIROBI, 29 January 2018, (PSCU) First Lady Margaret Kenyatta and Ms Melinda Gates have agreed that women and girls should remain at the centre of the country’s health care policy.
Sharing their commitment to improve the health outcomes for women in Kenya, both the First Lady and Ms Gates underlined the need for women and girls to access an affordable health care system.
Ms Gates is the co-chair of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation that supports several initiatives in Kenya, including health and where it works in close collaboration with the Government.
“I look forward to continuing our conversation on how we can support efforts to keep women and girls in sharp focus as Kenya pursues its ambitious plans for providing healthcare access to its people”, said Ms Gates.
They spoke at a Nairobi hotel before they both made a joint appearance at the Kenya Cultural Centre to join theatre lovers where members of the Moth Global Community presented powerful personal stories on empowerment.
The Moth Global Community Program- also supported by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation – develops and elevates true personal stories from extraordinary individuals in the global south.
Through the personal experiences of its graduates, the Moth Program seeks to challenge dominant narratives, deepen connections and create a more productive dialogue around the world.
During their discussions also attended newly nominated Health Cabinet Secretary Sicily Kariuki and her Predecessor Cleopa Mailu, the First Lady and Ms Gates described the empowerment of women and girls as a vital platform for inclusive growth and prosperity in Kenya.
They committed themselves to continue exploring opportunities to empower women and girls and improve their livelihoods.
The First Lady gave a new commitment to re-energize the work of Beyond Zero where she will distribute additional mobile clinics in needy counties, revamp and strengthen existing health facilities across the country.
Ms Gates thanked the First Lady on her efforts to improve maternal health through her leadership of Beyond Zero.
“In working to improve health outcomes, we have an obligation to use our platforms and our voice to amplify the challenges facing women and children; I commend the First Lady’s willingness to speak out on these important issues”, said Ms Gates who also paid a courtesy call to President Uhuru Kenyatta at State House, Nairobi.
The First Lady, who last met Ms Gates in June 2016, commended the Gates Foundation’s long partnership with Kenya and acknowledged the over $400 million worth of investment made over the past five years.
“We appreciate the impact The Gates Foundation is having here through the work they do in health”, said the First Lady.