Kilele is a Swahili Word meaning the Top, a Peak, or the Summit.
Between 20th and 24th September 2020, a group of Women Cancer Survivors summited Mt. Kenya under our flagship programme KILELE Challenge. The participants came from diverse social backgrounds and financial capabilities; majority coming from informal settlements in Nairobi. They also had differing cancer treatment and survivorship experiences, representing Breast, Cervical, Pancreatic, Laryngeal, Anal and Colorectal cancer survivors.
Accompanied by caregivers, coaches, and well-wishers and supporters, they left behind their daily routine, and with one goal undertook a nine-month preparatory journey to reach KILELE Health.
Climbing mountains is not for the faint hearted, and none of the team members had ever done it before, so this was a life changing journey. Witnessing the transformation in each of the participants, the team agreed that KILELE Challenge will be an annual activity to celebrate triumph and empower survivors to live proof that there is life beyond a cancer journey.
Through the KILELE Challenge, we are working with survivors and caregivers to address the four parameters commonly used to define quality of life in cancer survivorship: Physical Fitness, Psychological / Mental Health, Social Wellbeing, Vocational Functioning.
We coordinate weekly outdoors hikes and physical endurance activities tailored to the level of fitness of the participants. These are part of the preparatory trail hikes for our KILELE Challenge Survivors Mt. Kenya Summit, held annually on 20th – 24th September each year.
Cancer treatments allow patients to survive the ravaging effects of the disease. However, survivors are left to contend with the long-term side effects of medical treatment, the financial burden of the interventions, stigma associated with the disease, and the fear of reoccurrence.
The search for meaning after a cancer journey can often lead to a greater self-understanding and a sharper clarity for what truly matters. In developed nations, many cancer survivors have used their cancer experience to identify things in their lives and in the healthcare system that they would like to change.
The rigors of treatment, costs and time requirements do take a toll on livelihoods. Sometimes the patients’ family sells belongings to afford out of pocket expenses associated with cancer care. To help cancer patients recover financially, we are working with like-minded partners to innovate business incubation programmes.
At KILELE Health, we are committed to meaningfully engaging Survivors, Members, Partners and Stakeholders in improving the understanding of Survivorship, with a special focus on improving QUALITY OF LIFE.
Our Advisory Board and Executive Committee are our trusted advisors with established expertise or impeccable credentials in the sector; who offer professional skills and talents at no cost to the organization. They are mandated to guide our Executive Director and the Team in establishing the guiding principles and policies for the organization; delegation of responsibility and authority to individuals for enacting principles and policies, and to identify a path for accountability.
We are guided by KILELE to create trust based relationships with our Board and Staff Members, in order to ensure consistency, accountability, fairness, transparency, integrity, and ethical behaviour.
Our operational framework aligns the organizational leadership team with our staff and volunteers, with clear structures to delegate action, make effective decisions and deliver results with accountability and ensure optimal performance and continuous learning and growth.
KILELE Health Association is non-profit membership organization, registered in Kenya under the Societies Act (CAP.108).
Vision: A Kenya where people living with chronic health conditions (cancer and other non-communicable diseases) have equal opportunities for the attainment of optimal health, in the advancement of a life of purpose.
Mission: To promote excellence in the advancement of care for persons living with chronic health conditions and their caregivers, by providing a forum to exchange skills, knowledge and ideas towards the attainment of optimal quality of life.
Core Values: Participation, Respect, Integrity, Servant Leadership, Collaboration and Excellence (PRISCE)