Life Bloom Services International-LBSI.

Life Bloom Services International supports vulnerable women, girls and children (and a small component of males) in their journeys towards re discovering their lives' dreams, and empowers them to be able to journey towards turning their dreams into reality
Dec 21, 2012

Happy Holidays from Life Bloom

LBSI photo collage
LBSI photo collage

Happy Holidays from Life Bloom Services International!

We invite you to view a video of Life Bloom's impact on Fiona Wanjiru, who you've read about in other project updates, and a message from Catherine Wanjohi on CitizenTV.

Read an inspiring story about Lucy Wambui, a beneficiary of Life Bloom and current Peer Counselor for Life Bloom.

We also invite you to view our holiday message hosted on Constant Contact.

In this season and in all the days throughout the year, we are grateful for your involvement with Life Bloom and count you among our family.

Warmest wishes to you this year, the next, and all to come.

Love, hope, and light,
Life Bloom Services International

"What Life Bloom's done...is nothing short of incredible!"
-Margo McAulie of Kenya Help (California)

Links:

Nov 1, 2012

Visionary Sisters - Growing Networks

Nancy, Catherine, and Redempta
Nancy, Catherine, and Redempta

From the Executive Director, who visited Nancy of the Visionary Sister's group in mid-October:

To say that I was amazed would be an understatement. Nancy left the brothel on 3rd May 2012. She packed her clothes, left some behind, and left for an estate where she had rented a room.

Nancy never looked back. Her sister was running a shop then (she is younger than Nancy and is one of the reasons Nancy joined sex work, to pay school fees for her siblings). Nancy joined her sister at the shop, initially for a pay, but after a few months her sister got married and planned to move to another town to join her husband. Nancy was already plowing her savings into the shop alongside her sister. By August, the sister sold her business shares to Nancy. 

Today, Nancy's shop has stock amounting to about $295, every shelf has items for sale. She earns about $129 per month in profit, giving her a very decent life by any Kenyan standards. 

This is such a great breakthrough. Nancy wakes gets to the shop at 5:30am and leaves at about 10pm! I marveled at her warm customer care skills, her swiftness, her sharp focus, and great arithmetic skills (she got these skills in the 5 months she went to school with the other 5 women in the Visionary Sister's group).  Her current challenge is keeping records. We hope our partnership with Women Centers International will take care of this at the trainings and monitoring.

The attached photo was taken at her shop: Catherine is with Nancy and Redempta, who has become a photographer, and is taken outside Nancy's shop.

We are blessed.

Catherine Wanjohi
Executive Director
Life Bloom Services International-LBSI

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The Visionary Sisters are an outgrowth of Life Bloom Services International and are an example of the exemplary work that can be done by the women who LBSI trains for exit from sex work. Nancy had been trained through LBSI and brought others in her network along with her out of sex work.

The Visionary Sisters group members have regular meetings, and have recently been using the Internet to learn more about Women Enterprise Fund, the Government Department in the Ministry of Gender. Life Bloom has made progress to begin to work more cooperatively with the Ministry of Gender. 

Inventory in Nancy
Inventory in Nancy's shop

Links:

Aug 3, 2012

New Collaboration and Funding updates

Completed Grid
Completed Grid

We would like to thank you for your continued interest and support of Life Bloom's mission to build a training center for women and girls. This training center will help to re-educate women in different careers so that they can have the skills, as well as the confidence and support, to leave the sex-work industry. Without your help, we would not have accomplished so much already. And without your continued support, our goal could not be realized as quickly. 

What will be done in the coming month?

According to our Memorandum of Understanding signed between LBSI and Women Centers International – a new collaboration for Life Bloom - we shall begin recruiting women from Eastleigh for Leadership and Vocational skills training in the month of September 2012. This will give a chance for more than 40 women to receive training before the end of the year. Currently, only 3 women have received programmed training, two are doing very well in their business after leaving the brothels.

We also hope to increase fundraising through corporate connections within Naivasha and Nairobi.

What supplies are needed next?

We need bags of cement, sand and ballast and stones.

How many different women, total, have worked on the foundation? 

13 women worked to dig the foundation trenches; while 15 have worked on the metal (stabilizing) bars.

What funds are left/needed to get the center to the point where LBSI can move in while the remainder is being completed?

When done with the foundation, we plan to employ a strategy of putting up one room after another, (there is a way that this is possible in Kenya). This makes it easier to approach companies or individuals that would like to have a room to their name.

(Updated details) summary of the funds raised to date:

  1. Funds from within Kenya: $5058
  2. Global Giving site: $8232
  3. Directly through Kenya Help or the LBSI account: $9752
  4. Funds from Kenya and USA from March-to-date: $6937

 Totals: $29982

Summary of total expenses to date:

  1. Purchase of piece of land and change of ownership process: $7883
  2. Discounted Structural drawings/Designs - $2176
  3. Discounted Approvals by the Government of Kenya: $882
  4. Fencing off of piece of land and construction of site store: $1241
  5. Purchase of materials, constructions to date and labor costs: $17,769

Total: $29951

Summary for foundation costs:

  1. Total cost projected: $46,656
  2. Total expenditure:$ 17769
  3. Yet to be raised: $ 28887
Woman receives training
Woman receives training
Unwrapping binding wire, w/Catherine (far right)
Unwrapping binding wire, w/Catherine (far right)

Links:

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