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A Refugee Soap Maker Is Fighting COVID-19
In 2015, Innocent Havyarimana started a soap-making business in the Kenyan refugee camp where he lives. Little did he know that his business would become vital at the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic a few years later.
Kakuma refugee camp is home to 200,000 refugees, posing serious challenges to fighting the dangerous virus. When Havyarimana realized how important hand-washing was to preventing infection, he lowered prices and began offering his products in smaller quantities and sizes to make them more affordable. He also gives free soap to elderly and disabled people.
"Everyone needs soap, but not everybody is able to afford it,” he said. “So I lowered the prices, as it was more important to protect people than to think of profit.”
Havyarimana learned how to make soap from a course, and with a loan and grants was able to launch his business. He employs 42 people, many of whom are also refugees. In addition to selling soap to others in the camp, he supplies soap to local businesses, institutions, and relief agencies.
“I want to help the community in any way I can,” he said. (Read More)
The Dominican Republic just banned child marriage. The country has one of the highest rates of early marriage, with more than one-third of women married before turning 18. A 2017 report by UNICEF and the World Bank showed that banning child marriage in the country would decrease the its poverty rate by 10 percent.
Despite concerns about busy schedules, longer work hours, and changing family dynamics, parents have actually been spending increasingly more time with their children over the last 50 years. This trend is true for many countries, and it’s also true for both mothers and fathers. This increase is good news because parent-child interactions are important for childhood development.