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sending items to Kenya

Leeds
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sending items to Kenya

We have just returned from Nairobi where we visited a childrens orphanage. We would like to support the home by sending items to them rather than money but having looked on the forum it seems that things are apt to get stolen. It isnt possible for us to send them out with anyone so can anyone suggest the best way to get clothes and essential items to the children

manchester, United...
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1,201 posts
93 reviews
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1. Re: sending items to Kenya

This comes up so often I guess you are already aware of the difficulties sending stuff over there. But I'll repeat my experience anyway.

We support an orphanage in the Central Highlands. We used to regularly ship clothing and other items but about 4 or 5 years ago the government started to tax these items heavily. Typically 400kg of clothing would be hit with duty of over £1000. At about the same time shipping costs increased from about £400 to over £1000. It simply wasn't worth sending things.

To be honest I've also had second thoughts about the rights and wrongs of shipping items that can be bought over there. We now try and buy local as much as possible. We employ ladies to make clothes for the children rather than sending from the UK. This has helped the local economy no end and allows these women to support their families.

We do make the most of our baggage allowance when we visit but its really been better for everyone since we stopped shipping stuff.

Glasgow, United...
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2. Re: sending items to Kenya

you could still carry some on your next visit, keep it within your luggage allowance, would have to keep your own luggage to bare minimum, i am regular traveller and my baggage has never been opened on arrival, but if they do open your baggage and raise silly issues then you may get taxed.

UK
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144 posts
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3. Re: sending items to Kenya

I agree with the others. Take as much as you can when you are travelling, but it really isn't worth trying to send stuff.

Norfolk, England
Destination Expert
for Kikambala
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524 posts
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4. Re: sending items to Kenya

Apart from the above comments be very aware of the orphanage/ home you support. Unfortunately not all are as they appear. If you send clothes you could find them for sale in the markets.

Sorry, but its true.

plymouth england
Destination Expert
for Kenya
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5,880 posts
15 reviews
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5. Re: sending items to Kenya

Ditto Hadza !!! how true and sad .... how true ....

Durham
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827 posts
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6. Re: sending items to Kenya

You can only do your bit and hope for the best

Nairobi, Kenya
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7. Re: sending items to Kenya

I work with a mission tour company and therefore handle many groups from various parts of the world who come to volunteer in East Africa . At the same time we own a clearing and forwarding company which handle imports at the ports of Kenya .However with my experience i do agree with some of your comments at the same time do not agree with some . Goods can be brought into the country duty free, However there are laid down procedures which sometimes scare people. The process is long. So either support the orphanage by buying locally or carry few items when coming into the country.

Just to advice Hadza your experience can not be the same as everybody's. Not all orphanages are bad. That is why we started mission Tour company to be able to advice where necessary.

God bless you all.

manchester, United...
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8. Re: sending items to Kenya

Thomas - it is well nigh impossible to get duty free status even for orphanages!

Leeds
3 posts
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9. Re: sending items to Kenya

Thanks everyone for their advice and thoughts. I doubt i will be returning to Kenya for quite a while as its quite expensive so may need to re look at how to help the children. Seems a shame as I have started buying stuff to send but no doubt children in UK can benefit from these items. Perhaps the best way forward is to sponser a child. At least that way I can make a difference to a least one child. What a sad situation.

10. Re: sending items to Kenya

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