Children eating in SYSC's Centre
As the holidays are upon us, we'd like to take another opportunity to thank you with our whole hearts for being a friend to the people the Shauri Yako community this year, and giving eight young girls the chance to escape poverty.
If you still have gifts left to cross off your list, would you consider making another donation to Shauri Yako Community Youth Support Centre (SYSC) as a tribute to someone you love?
Unfortunately, for many here in Nyeri the holidays are not a time of joy. Because most people in these slums live on less than $1 a day and there is no land for farming, many will go without food to eat on Christmas. Poverty has many trappings, one of the worst of which the girls in our community is human trafficking. Young women, desperate for a better life, are being recruited to work in oil rich Middle East countries as house help. Many are never heard from again. The media and the few who manage to escape report that they are held as slaves or forced to engage in commercial sext work.
We at SYSC continue to believe that the best way to address poverty is to provide Nyeri's youth with the tools, skills and knowledge they need to move on to a better life. We do this through education, vocational training and health outreach. We have now trained a total of over 240 youth in computers, tailoring, welding and metal work. Over 50% of these individuals are now directly employed and many of the rest are earning a living through self-employement. We also address more immediate needs by providing a drop-in shelter, offer free HIV/AIDS education and training, promoting urban farming, facilitating youth involvement in sports and, when funding permits, run a food sharing program for those families most in need.
Your support for SYSC through Global Giving this year has allowed us attain training space, recruit trainers and offer tailoring training to 8 vulnerable girls. These young women, who all wish to pursue self-employment, are now receiving our support in attaining microfinance to help them get their feet off the ground.
We remain a tiny charity that depends entirely on individual donors like you. Our small size has benefits though in that we can mobilize resources quickly and have a very real impact on the lives of people we know to be in the greatest need. We are striving to raise $5000 through our holiday campagin so we can offer a second phase of training to the next round of girls who are waiting for the opportunity. Further funding raised toward our project goal will be used to begin a new course offering for young men in welding and/or plumbing in 2012.
Please, consider changing the course of a young person's life as a gift that will really be appreciated this holiday season. It may be convenient to sign up as a monthly donor, so you can spread the cost of your gift out over the course of a year. Or see Global Giving's Tribute Card option to make a donation in honour of someone else.
Joe Mwai and the SYSC Team
Chair of the Board
Young community residents
Phase 1 trainee in the classroom