Children
 Kenya
Project #12508

Drama, Dance, Music, & Sport for Kisumu Youth

by Equip Manyatta
2Jinyce performs at local school
2Jinyce performs at local school

New opportunities continue to unfold for the young people participating in the programs of the Manyatta Youth Resource Centre. Manyatta United’s Under-16 team has been invited to participate in SIFC, Södertälje International Football Cup (SIFC 2016). The cup is taking place in Södertälje, about 25 minutes outside of Stockholm, the capital of Sweden, from July 11-16. During the tournament our youth will get to play against competition from over 300 teams, from close to 30 different countries and five continents. The boys would get to visit and participate in a Swedish school for a week, have all of their meals paid for, plus entrance into two amusement parks as well as a music festival.

This is a huge opportunity for our youth as many of them have never even left their home area around Kisumu. Unfortunately, in order to make this a successful event we will have to raise close to $25,000 for airfare to get our team and coaches to Sweden. This is quite a challenge but we will do our best to make it happen!  

Three of our U-16 soccer players were also called up to the national Kenyan U-18 football team to participate at the Inter Government Agency Development (Igad) games in Djibouti in January. Ian, Ibrahim and Patrick, who were in the U-14 Kenyan team that travelled to South Africa in 2013 for the Copa Cola International tournament, were selected to join the Harambee Stars camp. Unfortunately the tournament was cancelled due to low enrollment from other countries, but we take the recognition of our three players with pride.

Congratulations yet again to our U-16 football team for winning the 2015 Amshaball Tournament at Kisumu’s Moi stadium, just weeks after winning the KYFA finals. They defeated West Ham FC from Nyalenda. These players have come up through the younger teams and have built skills that are now showing so well. The younger players see how their training is paying off.

We also hosted another successful Pendo Moja Peace Tournament. This tournament is held once a year with the goals of promoting peace through soccer and performing arts. Artists from the MYRC entertain guests and spectators as teams play for a trophy and other awards. This year was the first time we had international participants and Fire Soccer FC from Tororo, Uganda ended up winning.

In our Performing Arts section, our artists continue to hustle and get more recognition. Both Nahna and Gabiro are set to perform alongside the famous Tanzanian bongo flava artist, Diamond. They will be performing at the Simba Club in Kisumu February 13.

Gabiro has finished filming his latest song, Ujumbe Remix, and is planning the release party for next month. 2Jincye continues to entertain and inspire youth through their series of concerts at local schools.

School fees continue to be a huge issue, particularly as our girls and boys mature and hope to attend Secondary School. On top of the fees for books, uniforms, and supplies needed in Primary School, Secondary students must also pay tuition. We are determined to build on our success in having all MYRC participants stay in school, but increased, ongoing funding is needed to achieve that goal.

Equip Manyatta Co-Chair Keevan will be traveling back to Kisumu in March. It’s always so exciting to see how the programs have grown since the previous year. Going on seven years now! We would never have gotten this far without your generous support. Thank you!

Girls enjoy meal with others every week
Girls enjoy meal with others every week
In front of new office with trophies
In front of new office with trophies
Gabiro will appear with Diamond
Gabiro will appear with Diamond
Nahna with Vybez trophy and friend
Nahna with Vybez trophy and friend
Stills from Ujumbe video shoot
Stills from Ujumbe video shoot
Our logo goes up on gate of the new office
Our logo goes up on gate of the new office

The year 2015 is nearly finished and the Manyatta Youth Resource Center has made much progress, but continues to look forward as we approach 2016.  A momentous change for the MYRC this past month is the relocation of our main office, back to the heart of Manyatta.  In 2009, the MYRC began in the McCogilo Estate within the Manyatta slums and in 2012 we opened a new office in Nubian Estate just outside of Manyatta. This new office served us well as it was near our training pitch and also allowed us to become organized.  Now in 2015, the members of the MYRC felt it was important to move back into Manyatta in order for our objectives to be realized.  By moving back within the slums, we will be closer to the community we are trying to directly influence.

Our members have been helped this year by the purchase of a motorbike.  The bike was bought with three goals in mind and has had encouraging results.  Our first goal was to help provide income for youth members at the MYRC.  Motorcycles are used as a method of transportation similar to a taxi in Kisumu.  This bike has given youth like Ochieng and Erick the opportunity to make an income, allowing them to provide food for themselves and also contribute to their families' expenses.  A second goal was to create a small income-generating project that had the potential to grow.  The bike has earned enough funds to pay for itself and the MYRC is already planning on buying a second bike to expand the business. Funds generated by the bike have also been used to assist our soccer teams. Our third goal was to have a mode of transportation for our management team.  Our officers often have to attend several meetings and events in a day, and having our new bike has helped save money used for movement and also has made it easier for our officers to be on time to their many functions. 

Our health department has also taken strides this year, creating many new partnerships with a variety of international and local organizations.  The health department has focused on training our youth about making healthy choices, reproductive health, and resisting drug and alcohol abuse.  The latest partnership has been with the organization Marie Stopes, which has a new initiative titled, Future Fab.  Our youth participated for three months in the new program, which targets youth living in slums, aged 15-19 years, who are at risk of dropping out of school.  Girls in the slums face tremendous challenges staying in school, and Marie Stopes hopes to reduce early pregnancy and marriage, as well as give young girls resources for staying safe from violence and abuse.
 
Thirty-two players from our soccer club participated in the Safaricom's My Professional Dream (MPD) trials in Kisumu, and after conducting trials across the country MPD released the list of players selected to travel to Nairobi. We were so proud to learn that five of our players were selected for the National Safaricom MPD trials. We want to send big congratulations out to those five players from Manyatta United FC.  We were proud, but not surprised that our youth were recognized. As of now, our adult team is ranked third in the Provincial League table, and our youth categories all top the table for their respective categories.  The MYRC continues to open doors for youth to showcase their talent and realize opportunities. 
 
MYRC musicians, dancers, dramatists, and producers also had the opportunity to participate in an event hosted and organized by our close friends and partners One Vybe Africa and Young Generation Centre called "Made in Kisumu". The event was held in the heart of Kisumu, at Kisumu Sport's Ground and even featured Kenyan international stars Sauti Sol.  Our artists and producers participated as event organizers and also as performers.  It is events like this that help contribute to the growing popularity of artists like Gabiro da Hip-Hop.  Gabiro's fan-base is continuing to grow and he will be releasing a new music video early in 2016. 
 
We also want to give a big thank you to Kisumu Governess Sherry, for donating a large amount of clothing to our youth.  As the holiday season nears, so does Kisumu's tough monsoon season with even more rain expected than normal due to El Niño.  Governess Sherry's donation will help assure that our most vulnerable youth do not spend this holiday season suffering in the wet cold. 
 
As we enter the holiday season across the globe we ask you to consider the youth we are working with and the obstacles they face daily.  A small donation of $10 will help us give a hot meal to 26 youth.  We ask that you help us bring the New Year in with hope and an increased capacity to assist those in need.  Please make a donation today that will help us serve our community and create a better tomorrow for youth living in the slums of Kisumu.  

The new motorbike provides income and transport
The new motorbike provides income and transport
Discussing healthy choices gives young women hope
Discussing healthy choices gives young women hope
The U-10 team, one of our many winners
The U-10 team, one of our many winners
Starbell producer Malique with founder Simon
Starbell producer Malique with founder Simon
Gabiro (center) at Made in Kisumu (photo:GMAN Inc)
Gabiro (center) at Made in Kisumu (photo:GMAN Inc)
Nahna performs with Hottraxx Dance Crew
Nahna performs with Hottraxx Dance Crew

We are halfway through 2015, and the Manyatta Youth Resource Center and Equip Manyatta continue to offer exciting opportunities and programs for Kisumu Youth. 
 
Our provincial soccer team continues to challenge opponents in the ongoing North Nyanza Provincial league.  Our adult aged provincial soccer team is made up of youth who started with the MYRC in 2009 on our first under-14 soccer team.  In late June, Manyatta United met a tough challenge when they defeated Superstriker’s FC 4-2 at Shaurimoyo playing ground.   Unfortunately, our goalkeeper has also suffered a major leg injury that will keep him from playing for several months. Injuries are a major problem facing the Manyatta United Football Club as the pitches we play on are poorly maintained and are often hazardous.  Your donations to our programs, not only help the MYRC keep their programs running, they also help provide for medical assistance our youth need on and off the field. 
 
We were so proud of our good friend and collaborating artist, Nahna, as she was selected out of hundreds of applicants to travel to Sweden to participate in the Ethno Sweden Festival.  Ethno World is a program that creates festivals throughout Europe to bring folk musicians from many cultural backgrounds together from all over the world.  These musicians are given the opportunity to learn about a variety of cultures and traditions and a variety of musical styles through a combination of seminars, workshops, jam sessions and performances.  These musicians teach each other through intercultural learning and exchange. Nahna works at One Vibe Studios in Kisumu who helped Nahna find this opportunity.  Nahna has also been supported since 2012 by Equip Manyatta who has helped pay for studio sessions, music videos and trips to Nairobi to expose her talent.  Nahna spent three weeks in Sweden sharing about traditional Kenya through music and learning about cultures from around the world, Nahna had never left Kenya.  
 
Nahna was also featured in the studio collaboration organized by Street Breeze Records, One Vibe Studios and the MYRC’s Starbell Records.  The collaboration originated when Starbell Record’s lead producer, Malique, and Street Breeze Records lead producer, Claster, decided they wanted to send a message of unity to local musicians and studios.  Photographer and producer G Man did the photo shoot of the collaboration. Rising producer and videographer Crizo Mzeyah shot the music video. Crizo has shot several of the videos sponsored by the MYRC and has caught the attention of numerous stars looking to get professional music videos made.  To see more of Chrizo’s work check out his youtube page at:
 
https://www.youtube.com/user/CrizoStudio/videos
 
The performing arts collaboration 2Jinyce is still going and continues to perform at primary and secondary schools throughout Kisumu. While 2Jinyce aims at inspiring students to follow their dreams and believe in their talent it has also helped participating artists gain local popularity. Founding member of 2Jinyce and Starbell Records artist, Gabiro, continues to perform all over Nyanza and his following continues to grow as well.  Check out Gabiro’s recordings at
 
https://www.reverbnation.com/gabirodahiphop
 
Equip Manyatta also was given a really cool opportunity to display and sell arts and crafts made through our program and by MYRC youth at Lauren’s Restaurant in Boonville, California.  Lauren’s gave us three months to exhibit a wide range of pieces made in Kisumu and bought by Equip Manyatta.  By selling the art at shows like Lauren’s we are able to continue buying art made by youth in Kisumu and help small businesses created by these youth grow.  The show ends at the end of August so if you are in the area please stop by and check it out. We are so thankful to Lauren for giving us this opportunity. 
 
Equip Manyatta and the MYRC would like to thank you all for your continued support and also for the support you gave us during our Microproject fundraiser. During those three months we
raised enough money to help completely pay for the fees of 10 primary school students and 5 secondary school students for the whole year. It will also help us cover small fees and expenses for those youth who are just short of covering all of their costs. So, thank you! 

Nahna (r) and video crew at Lake Victoria, Kisumu
Nahna (r) and video crew at Lake Victoria, Kisumu
Street Breeze
Street Breeze's Claster and Starbell's Malique
Videographer & producer Crizo at work
Videographer & producer Crizo at work
Gabiro performs at a secondary school
Gabiro performs at a secondary school
Kisumu youth arts/crafts at Lauren
Kisumu youth arts/crafts at Lauren's Boonville, CA
Students at MM Shah Primary gather for 2Jinyce
Students at MM Shah Primary gather for 2Jinyce

2015 seems to be flying by and those involved with the Manyatta Youth Resource Centre have a demanding schedule. Even as we continue with our many activities and responsibilities, we at the MYRC and Equip Manyatta wish to offer our condolences and mourning for the victims of the horrible attack at Garissa University. This attack on April 2, took away the lives of 147 young Kenyans who could have helped to build a better tomorrow for Kenya. Insecurity in Kenya is increasing and youth who live in poverty or are vulnerable in other ways are seen as potential recruits for terrorist groups and gangs.  Though our impact at the MYRC may not reach nationwide, we whole heartedly believe that the programs and opportunities we offer provide youth with alternatives to violence, help them understand they have positive options in life, encourage them to believe they can become successful, and equip them with knowledge they need to make constructive and safe choices. With every youth we keep in school, every youth we engage in physical activities and every youth we offer the chance to express themselves artistically we help a youth know they have more to live for than extremism and gang-life.

Providing youth with the tools they need to be successful individuals and Kenyan citizens is one of our goals at the MYRC.  For this reason we collaborated with IMPACT Research to host their Healthy Choices seminar for the boys and girls who participate in our programs.  Healthy Choices helps youth learn about ways they can protect themselves in their daily life from sanitary issues to reproduction to drugs and alcohol.  This seminar not only gave our youth valuable lessons they will take with them into adulthood, but it also provided a positive environment and activity for them as they were on their break from school.  The MYRC also partnered with the Kisumu YWCA to host a workshop about options for improving family health. The MYRC aspires to connect with many organizations to empower our youth members with access to information and skills building.  

Our senior football team, which recently began its provincial league campaign, also took time to help organize a clean-up of Shaurimoyo ACK Parish Church grounds. The Shaurimoyo School System has been a valuable partner to the MYRC, and Shaurimoyo Primary is the main training field for Manyatta United FC. As the surrounding estates do not have sufficient infrastructure to deal with the massive amount of rubbish and often-raw sewage, the area our youth live in can be hazardous to health. The MYRC frequently organizes community clean-ups to promote the benefits of a healthy environment to our youth members and our community as well.

We have many things to be thankful about at the MYRC these past months.  Very importantly, we were selected to be featured as a Project of the Month for May on Global Giving’s Project of the Month Club.  We feel so honored and thankful that Global Giving is recognizing our work and we hope that being a part of the club this month will help us reach more people interested in supporting our project in the future as well.  We are also thankful to Mayfair Holdings Limited, which has agreed to donate two crates of bread each month to our weekly feeding program.  Once a week, the MYRC organizes lunch for its members so that it can ensure that they get at least one meal that day.  We wish we could do more, but the costs of feeding so many youth adds up.  We are also happy that the 2015 Kisumu Youth Football Association’s (KYFA) 2015 soccer season has started.  We were proud to be a part of KYFA’s ribbon cutting ceremony at Shaurimoyo Primary School. The MYRC will field several under-18 teams with a chance of a cash prize at the end of the season for the top two teams in each category.  That is another reason Mayfair’s donation is so important to us.  Lastly, the MYRC is proud to have purchased a motorbike to be used for income generation as well as local transportation for our management board.  Motorbikes in Kenya are often used as a cheaper alternative to a taxi and the MYRC has already employed an athlete from our senior team as a driver during the week.  This motorbike will enable him to start supporting himself financially and will also provide a small stream of income for the MYRC.  The motorbike will also help our management board members to get to local meetings and events.  

The MYRC performing arts department has also been busy the past few months.  Our recording studio, Starbell Records, initiated a collaboration with two other local studios to create a song promoting unity among Kisumu performing artists and their studios.  Starbell, together with Street Breeze Records and One Vibe Entertainment, recorded a song featuring artists from each studio and produced a music video.  Ultimately the group will also release a short documentary that will chronicle the journey of the collaboration.  We hope that we will send a message of unity to local musicians and producers and inspire collaborations like this in the future.  

Starbell Records and some Starbell performing artists also collaborated with other performing artists from Kisumu to create a group called 2JinyceThis group will be performing at local primary and secondary schools with the goal of creating a dialogue about public health combining the message with lots of entertainment from musicians, dancers, aspiring models and theatre groups. Starbell artist Gabiro explains that the group wants to, “engage the pupils and students on this talk and also the teachers, some of whom are parents.”  2Jinyce also aims at inspiring students to follow their dreams and believe in their talent.

The MYRC was also honored to receive a visit from an in-the-field representative from Global Giving.  Our visitor, Kelly, ran two workshops at the MYRC office, one with the goal of helping more local groups access Global Giving and its resources and another for already existing Global Giving projects based in Kisumu.  It was wonderful to have a representative come and see first hand our projects in action.  The workshops were helpful for many local groups who learned more about Global Giving but also gained important information about online fundraising and best practices for new NGOs.  We welcome Kelly back anytime and also welcome any visitors who would like to see how we are helping youth in Kisumu.  

The MYRC is continually struggling to find adequate financial support for its education program.  We support more than 20 boys and girls currently in primary and secondary school. This is why we recently began an education support micro-project on Global Giving. All donations made to the micro-project will help ensure that our current sponsored youth stay in school and that we can expand our support to more vulnerable youth.  Our education program supports girls like Sara, whose mother passed away due to HIV/AIDS.  Sara lives in a one-room tin home with her elderly father and her younger brother who was infected with HIV at birth.  Sara is not infected but still faces a dire future unless she can get the education she deserves.  Please visit our micro-project, Education Opportunities for Manyatta, at http://www.globalgiving.org/microprojects/manyatta-education/ and make a donation that will give our Kenyan youth a brighter future.  Please also share both of our projects with your friends and family.    

Thank you again for all that you have done.  We couldn’t have made it this far without you all.  

Our U-16 Girls Team at KYFA opening
Our U-16 Girls Team at KYFA opening
Global Giving rep Kelly gives workshop at MYRC
Global Giving rep Kelly gives workshop at MYRC
Enjoying the Mayfair bread donation
Enjoying the Mayfair bread donation
Senior Team Clean-up Day
Senior Team Clean-up Day
Kisumu Musicians Collaboration
Kisumu Musicians Collaboration
Keevan warmly welcomed back to Kisumu
Keevan warmly welcomed back to Kisumu

The New Year has come and the Manyatta Youth Resource Center (MYRC) is working hard to make 2015 our most successful year to date. I arrived back in Kisumu mid-January to a warm welcome and also warm weather.  Kisumu sits on the Equator and has been averaging temperatures of 35 degrees Celsius and above.  Despite the heat and unforgiving sun, the MYRC presses on with its programs, organizing events for football and performing arts and creating opportunities for girls and boys to have fun and explore their talents in this lakeside city. 
 
Though the Kisumu Youth Football Association’s (KYFA) football league is on a three-month break, the MYRC football team, Manyatta United, is still busy organizing girls and boys friendlies, playing in tournaments and preparing for the coming season.  The MYRC and Manyatta United were honored to welcome two guest players on a tour of East Africa, who travelled all the way from Lagos, Nigeria to come play with our adult team.  These young players are the first international visitors for a soccer club in Kisumu and their visit inspired our team and organization.  Nigeria is a country that Kenyans look to as one of the leading soccer nations in Africa.  Our visitors did not disappoint as they showed off high levels of talent on the pitch and also demonstrated their talents with inspirational speeches and exemplary character off the pitch.
 
The Manyatta United adult team recently took the Kisumu District League title and was promoted to the Provincial League level.  Our Nigerian visitors came to play with this team and are considering joining us for the entire season.  Our Provincial team is mostly made up of young players who started at the MYRC on an Under-14 aged team but have since grown to become young adults.  The MYRC’s goal has always been to build players up and keep creating opportunities as they grow.  So many teams in Kisumu are limited in the support they can provide and players are often abandoned when they reach eighteen.  The MYRC hopes to continue providing for our players and hopefully one day create a Kenyan Premiere League team from players who have come up through our youth academy. 
 
We were so proud of our players when they took the Kisumu District title after only one season. This shows that our coaches and training are having an impact and that youth are getting opportunities for building their talent.  In an additional honor, our head coach, Opiyo, was named Coach of the Decade by the KYFA management board for his impact on youth and football in Kisumu.  We are so proud to be working with such a highly regarded and honored coach. 
 
Yet the MYRC still faces the huge responsibility of funding this new Provincial team.  With your help we managed to complete the District season and also come out on top.  The Provincial League presents us with a greater challenge, as the costs of completing this season will be even higher than the District season.  Our players will have to travel further to away matches and our organization will have to pay higher fees for enrollment in the league.  These costs are a major challenge and we need your support once again to see this team succeed.  If our team finishes the season in the top two positions, we will then be promoted to the Kenya Nationwide soccer league.  This is our goal, but we have to be able to fund this season first.
 
As the MYRC soccer teams work hard, our performing artists are also busy moving forward and working hard to showcase their talents.   Our performing artist Gabiro Da Hip-hop, who recently won the Kisumu Vybez award for best social awareness song, has been busy in the MYRC recording studio, Starbell Records, recording new music by day and performing at shows by night.  Gabiro has gained quite a following in our area and he recently was the guest artist at Club Marina in Kisumu with the headlining artist being Nairobi hip-hop star Kristof.  The venue was packed with students from Maseno University and Gabiro’s performance brought down the house.  Gabiro is young and working hard.  He hopes to produce his first music video this year with help from the Manyatta Youth Resource Center.  You can help make his dream come true by supporting Equip Manyatta. 
 
The MYRC also helped sponsor a comedy event at the Kisumu Social Hall in January called Laughter Mania.  Laughter Mania hopes to create a regular comedy show in Kisumu much like the popular Kenyan show Churchill Live.  The show featured many comedians, dancers and musicians, including the MYRC’s own Gabiro Da Hip-Hop. The show was a big success for its first venture and we hope to work closely with Laughter Mania in the future to see Kisumu talent showcased at the highest level. 
 
A major challenge we face here in Kisumu is the formidable endeavor of keeping our youth in school.  It is so sad to see kids not being able to learn because they can’t come up with enough money to pay school fees and buy the necessary school supplies such as uniforms, shoes and learning material.  Kids are sometimes sent home for owing as little as $5; many face greater need of up to $200.  The MYRC has made major accomplishments in supporting education, has found sponsorships for over thirty youth, and has had four students finish secondary school thanks to the support we found.  As the MYRC deals with over 200 youth, the challenge to find help for those that most need it is daunting.  We are asking for your support so that we can keep as many of our youth in school as possible. 

Talent in sports and performing arts are enhanced when a young person has opportunities to get an education.  We would appreciate any help you can offer so our youth members finish first primary school and then secondary school.  One day we also hope to sponsor young women and men for their university education so they can become future leaders not only for MYRC, but also for Kisumu and Kenya. The cooperative experiences and education that you fund through Equip Manyatta provide a foundation for the lives of our young people and for Kenyan society as a whole. 

Coach Opiyo is KYFA Coach of the Decade!
Coach Opiyo is KYFA Coach of the Decade!
Nigerian visitors & US Embassy Rep at MYRC office
Nigerian visitors & US Embassy Rep at MYRC office
Gabiro at Laughter Mania
Gabiro at Laughter Mania
Ceremonial cake-cutting at Laughter Mania
Ceremonial cake-cutting at Laughter Mania
Vavick and his latest work at MYRC office
Vavick and his latest work at MYRC office

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Organization Information

Equip Manyatta

Location: Philo, CA - USA
Website: http:/​/​www.manyatta.org
Project Leader:
Kathy Bailey
Philo, CA United States
$9,520 raised of $20,000 goal
 
139 donations
$10,480 to go
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