Educate and Empower Street Children in Kenya

 
$52,424
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Staff and volunteers at the CYEC have created two new youth clubs at the Centre. The clubs are designed to teach the CYEC’s young people (age 13 and up) about puberty, adolescence, HIV-prevention, goal setting and conflict resolution. The girls have named their club “Soul Sisters” and meet each Thursday to discuss menstruation, gender roles in Kenyan society and domestic violence. The boys’ “Brotherhood” club meets each Friday. The young people sip tea while discussing their hopes, fears and ambitions. Staff use a public health curriculum written by the United Nations Population Council to help design their lessons.

The clubs have been a wild success and as such, local leaders have asked the staff to write their lessons in a simple curriculum that can be used elsewhere in Kenya. Local schools have asked that the CYEC’s staff and volunteers share their lessons with the local school children. We look forward to helping other local people start similar empowerment clubs.

Your support helps make this work possible!

Today (Wed. 9 Oct.) is a Global Giving bonus day. Your gifts today are matched at 30% - it's an easy way to make a big difference in the lives of these young people!

Thanks for all you do!

Gathering rubbish
Gathering rubbish

The children of the CYEC are learning about the environment by removing garbage from their Centre and the surrounding community. Children act as “trash police” who keep the Centre clean, compost bins ensure that nothing goes to waste, an environmental club is working to beautify the Centre and “Community Clean-Up Days” are encouraging the community to join the CYEC in its efforts to preserve the environment.

To instill a sense of environmental responsibility, children are assigned the duty of being trash police. Trash police patrol the Centre, picking up garbage and reminding others to keep the Centre clean.

The CYEC’s children are also learning about composting. Food scraps such as peels, stems and stalks are collected in colorful composting bins. Children are assigned the duty of emptying the bins into a large compost pile that is used to fertilize the Centre’s garden.

The children of the CYEC have also started an “environmental club” which meets once per week to discuss environmental issues and to brainstorm ways that the CYEC can help improve the environment. The club is creating a “green square” that will be filled with a variety of trees, bushes and flowers.

But the clean-up does not stop at the gates of the Centre. The first of many “Community Clean-Up Days” was held in mid-August. Children donated their Saturday to pick up trash around the community. The children were divided into groups which focused on different areas including a popular shopping center and a church. They talked to local community members about the importance of community service and a clean environment.

Also keep Wed. 9 Oct. on your calendar. On that day, Global Giving will match all gifts at 30%. Watch for more to come on this!

Put it in the bin!
Put it in the bin!
Keep it clean
Keep it clean
Cleaning up is fun!
Cleaning up is fun!
Community Development Workshop
Community Development Workshop

One of the main challenges for programs for street children is a successful transition to independent living once the youth complete their education. With high unemployment, (and no homes to return to) they are at a high risk of returning to the streets. To help young people transition to life on their own the CYEC has developed plans for eco-villages where youth can work and further their skills. After several years of preparation and planning, we are thrilled that the CYEC has started settlement at the first eco-village site in Othaya, about 25 minutes from Nyeri.

Youth from the Centre recently participated in a two-day asset-based community development workshop to help them identify available resources that can be used to develop the14 acre site. The long-term vision is to have an ecologically and economically sustainable community that will serve as a launch pad for the youth. Specific ideas for development include horticulture production, dairy goats, and eco-tourism. Like the CYEC, this will be a model facility for the national program for street-dwelling families.

Othaya site - near the river
Othaya site - near the river
Othaya Shamba
Othaya Shamba

Thanks to your generous support, the CYEC was able to have an exciting and successful 2012 across its programs! Youth enterprises have expanded and grown, children expressed themselves through the arts and the young people shone in educational activities inside and beyond the classroom. Please see the attached annual report for all the details.

Also, Wednesday March 13 is a Bonus Day on Global Giving, so all gifts made that day after 9.00 a.m. Eastern time (8.00 a.m. Central) will be matched at 30%. This is a great way to increase the impact of your donation!

Thanks for all you do! You make all this possible!


Attachments:

In honor of your support of the Children & Youth Empowerment Centre in Kenya, we composed a special version of The 12 Days of Christmas. We think even those who don’t celebrate Christmas will enjoy! 

  • “On the first day of Christmas my true love gave to me a bunny in the dinner pot.” 

 Penn State researchers found protein from meat is crucial for children's brain development & PSU ag students determined rabbits are the most cost-effective meat producers.  The CYEC now has more than 50 rabbits, providing income and protein.

  • “On the second day of Christmas my true love gave to me two preschoolers playing & learning and a bunny in the dinner pot.”

The CYEC opened its nursery school program to the local community in 2012. Now these children can enter primary school ready to learn.

  •  “On the third day of Christmas my true love gave to me three paint brushes, two preschoolers playing & learning and a bunny in the dinner pot.”

Volunteers from US and Kenya joined together in a mural arts program for the CYEC last summer. A recent Penn State grad raised funds and local artists lent their skills so children at the Centre could express themselves and enjoy colorful murals. See: http://www.facebook.com/CyecKenyaMuralArtsProject?fref=ts

  •  “On the fourth day of Christmas my true love gave to me four girls a sewing, three paint brushes, two preschoolers playing & learning and a bunny in the dinner pot.”

 A couple Kansas State students have created a company to import and sell the shoulder bags made by the young women at the Centre. The graduates of the tailoring program can earn and save, thanks to these sales! See: http://www.facebook.com/RafikiBags

  •   “On the fifth day of Christmas my true love gave to me five months of life skills, four girls a sewing, three paint brushes, two preschoolers playing & learning and a bunny in the dinner pot.”

A volunteer from Australia worked with CYEC volunteers to implement a life skills program developed by Penn State faculty. After gaining greater self-awareness, the first class graduated this fall.

  • On the sixth day of Christmas my true love gave to me six youth a baling, five months of life skills, four girls a sewing, three paint brushes, two preschoolers playing & learning and a bunny in the dinner pot.”

With the support of PSU faculty and students, several youth have learned how to cut and bale hay, as well as build manual balers. Their successful business has been in operation for nearly a year.

  • “On the seventh day of Christmas my true love gave to me seven children studying, six youth a baling, five months of life skills, four girls a sewing, three paint brushes, two preschoolers playing & learning and a bunny in the dinner pot.”

Children at the CYEC value education and strive to succeed. In exams this year, more than one-fourth of the primary children placed in the top 10% of their class! We also have 17 students in secondary school, thanks to their efforts and your support!

  • “On the eighth day of Christmas my true love gave to me eight kids a working, seven children studying, six youth a baling, five months of life skills, four girls a sewing, three paint brushes, two preschoolers playing & learning and a bunny in the dinner pot.”

To increase sustainability and give the children & youth responsibilities, production (food, clothes, furniture) and chores (cleaning, etc.) are handled nearly entirely by the youth & children. Volunteers from KSU helped create a system of exchange to track these activities.

  • “On the ninth day of Christmas my true love gave to me nine machines for workshops, eight kids a working, seven children studying, six youth a baling, five months of life skills, four girls a sewing, three paint brushes, two preschoolers playing & learning and a bunny in the dinner pot.”

The metalworking and woodworking workshops have been fully renovated and equipped, thanks to a grant from the government of Japan. We are hopeful that with this equipment we will be able to train the street youth to a competitive level at the same time creating an avenue for income generation.

  • “On the tenth day of Christmas my true love gave to me ten volunteers mentoring, nine machines for workshops, eight kids a working, seven children studying, six youth a baling, five months of life skills, four girls a sewing, three paint brushes, two preschoolers playing & learning and a bunny in the dinner pot.”

Friends of the CYEC in Kenya have formed the Zawadi Society, a group of volunteers who mentor and tutor children at the Centre. It’s so important for the kids to have a special someone who cares about them!

  • “On the eleventh day of Christmas my true love gave to me eleven greens a growing, ten volunteers mentoring, nine machines for workshops, eight kids a working, seven children studying, six youth a baling, five months of life skills, four girls a sewing, three paint brushes, two preschoolers playing & learning and a bunny in the dinner pot.”

With two small greenhouses and a shamba (large garden) the CYEC youth produce enough veggies to supply the Centre. This provides fresh produce for the children and skills and income for the youth.

  • “On the twelfth day of Christmas my true love gave to me twelve youth succeeding, eleven greens a growing, ten volunteers mentoring, nine machines for workshops, eight kids a working, seven children studying, six youth a baling, five months of life skills, four girls a sewing, three paint brushes, two preschoolers playing & learning and a bunny in the dinner pot.”

The goal of the CYEC is to develop the potential of these children & youth so they can lead happy, productive lives. Your support helps us meet this goal!

About Project Reports

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Organization

Project Leader

Janelle Larson

Director of Zawadi Fund International
Nyeri, Kenya

Where is this project located?

Map of Educate and Empower Street Children in Kenya