I am thrilled to have the opportunity to work in the most amazing country in the world this summer – Kenya.
Kenya holds a special place in my heart and there are so many individuals I am excited to reconnect with on my third trip to this amazing place.
This summer, I will fill the role of implementation/development officer for KIDS (Kenyan Improvement and Development Society). This is a continuation of the work I started in early 2010 when I assisted with the founding of this organization. KIDS’ focus is to improve access to education in rural Kenyan communities, focusing especially on girls’ access to secondary education through the provision and implementation of scholarships, sponsorships, English immersion programs, tutoring, sports clinics, academic competitions, teacher incentives, life skills courses, adult resource classes and vocational training.
As implementation/development officer, my responsibilities will cover a broad scope of tasks. Since this organization is currently in its formative stages, my duties will be shaped around conditions on the ground, progress made with governing entities, and project funding made available.
I will attend meetings with the Kenyan NGO Board on behalf of KIDS and set up bank accounts and bookkeeping systems for KIDS. I will help determine the first stages in working toward the goal of improving access to education in rural communities by initiating community forums and meeting with school officials, parents, and students. Once these needs are assessed, I will conduct interviews and hire the appropriate contractors needed to help achieve these goals.
It will be my responsibility to create a “blueprint” for KIDS’ short-term and long-term implementation needs, focusing on tutoring in English, providing books, uniforms, school supplies, providing grants to families allowing their children to attend school on a regular basis, facilitating sports clinics, implementing health and life skills courses, and crating the provision of necessities such as feminine hygiene products and daily school lunches.
To achieve this, I will need to create documentation regarding all students in the program, including number of individuals in family, age, residence, grade level, test scores, medical history, etc. These documents will be useful for charting progress and administering aid, and will be the basic research supplement used by KIDS.
Leading up to this point, I have been working closely with an American lawyer who is assisting me in obtaining 501(c)3 (tax exempt) status here in the United States. We recently discovered that I will have to create a secondary, U.S., “partner” organization to obtain this status which will be vital for the organization’s future fundraising capacity.
Kenya is full of opportunity and I am amazed at the ingenuity and fortitude of so many of its young women. I look forward this summer to making small steps toward progress in access to education for these amazing girls.
Asante Sana (“thank you”) for your support!