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Urgent Appeal for Assistance to Raise Funds for Binyavanga Wainaina’s Medical Treatment

One Day I Will Write About This PlaceKwani?How to Write About Africa


Kwani Trust has set up a fundraiser to raise resources for urgent medical treatment for beloved Kenyan author Binyavanga Wainaina.

Wainaina suffered a stroke on 31 October, and needs to travel to India for treatment.

Kwani is attempting to raise KES 1 million (about R140 000) via M-Changa.

It is estimated that $25 000 (about R360 000) is needed immediately, while a further $20 000 (about R290 000) will be needed in mid-December.

Note: The simplest way for non-Kenyans or people outside of Kenya to contribute is via the PayPal option at the bottom of the fundraising page.

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The Ake Arts & Book Festival has also organised an event, to be held on Saturday, 28 November, in Lagos, Nigeria:


Wainaina has strong ties to South Africa, having lived here from 1991 to 2000, and has often written about his love for our country. But besides that, he is a powerful writer, an astute thinker and a warm person. Our thoughts are with him.

Press release:

Friday 20th November 2015

On October 31st 2015, Kenneth Binyavanga Wainaina, suffered a stroke at his home near Bomas Of Kenya. He was admitted to the Intensive Care Unit at Karen Hospital. His speech was affected, and he needed to undergo MRI and CT scans, in addition to round the-clock observation. The doctors recommended medicinal treatment and specialized speech therapy. Binyavanga was discharged on Friday 6th November.

On Friday 13th November, he developed some physical difficulties arising from the stroke. Following a scheduled appointment with a neurosurgeon, Dr David Oluoch Olunya, it was decided that he be admitted to Nairobi Hospital for further observation.

He was immediately checked into ICU for 24 hours and upon stabilization, he was moved into the general ward. Nairobi Hospital doctors advised that Binyavanga has a chronic condition that affects the blood vessels to the brain making him susceptible to blockages and strokes. They also stated that an immediate intervention is required before extensive therapy beyond first-stage treatment.

Binyavanga’s family and friends are now working to avail the best medical care possible for him. Through consultation, it has been agreed that the best medical care is in Bangalore, India where further tests will be conducted with the possibility of surgery.

This will be followed by rehabilitation, recuperation and basic care. We are currently working on his hospital-to-hospital transfer to India.

This is an appeal for assistance to his extended family, large network of friends and professional colleagues. Medical fund accounts (banking and mobile banking) have been established in Binyavanga Wainaina’s name under Kwani Trust where all financial donations can be sent.

From a preliminary assessment of the costs of travel (for him, an accompanying family member, doctor and nurse with their equipment), tests, medication, basic care, speech therapy and a period of recuperation, it is estimated that $25,000 is needed immediately, and a further $20,000 in a month’s time. These costs may rise and we are also eventually going to seek a longer-term insurance solution given this pre-existing condition and the need for ready access to world-class care.

We would appreciate your pledges and donations as soon as possible. Please see account details for the BINYAVANGA WAINAINA MEDICAL FUND below and feel free to seek further information on the following issues from the contacts below:

Bank Name: Commercial Bank Of Africa (CBA)
Account Name: Binyavanga Wainaina Medical Fund

  • KES (Kenya Shillings) Account: 6564760155
  • USD (US Dollar) Account: 6464760168

Bank Transfer Information (Applicable to both accounts)

If you want to make a mobile money donation from Kenya, please text BINYA to 22231 and follow directions.

For further information, please contact:

Kwani Trust

Thank you

James Wainaina

Billy Kahora
Managing Editor, Kwani

Angela Wachuka
Executive Director, Kwani


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Image courtesy Internaz on Flickr


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