Imagine if Mark Zuckerberg, founder of Facebook, had been born one of the nearly 1 billion children who live in the developing world. Imagine if his inventive mind — rather than being given the opportunity to create, flourish, and ultimately change the world — had been squandered by poor health and inadequate education.
It’s not a far-fetched scenario.
If Mark had been born a boy in the Slums of Nairobi, for example, rather than a boy in White Plains, New York, he could have been among the millions of young boys (and girls) who die each year before their 5th birthday from a preventable illness such as malaria, diarrhoea, or pneumonia.
At the young age of 15, rather than studying computer programming in school, he would likely have been at home helping his parents to his raise his siblings. Worse if he were a girl because by 19, he could have had a child of his own, joining the 14 million adolescent girls in the developing world who give birth in a given year (and often die while doing so).
Before the age of 20 — the age at which Zuckerberg launched Facebook — he could already have contracted HIV.
At the age of 29, rather than making global headlines by launching a multibillion dollar IPO for Facebook, chances are he would have become another statistic — another life, another mind that had never been given a chance to achieve its full potential and impact the world.
It’s time to make a difference and keep dreams alive.
During this Oktoberfest, and every day after, the local and global community needs to make the lives and futures of Children a priority. We can and must work together to invest in programs and resources that give all young minds, regardless of gender or geography, the opportunity to build their lives on their own terms — to protect their health, TO STAY IN SCHOOL, to channel their creativity, and to pursue their dreams. Our national economy — and our global future — depends on it.
The 50 KIDS 5 SLUMS INITIATIVE will strive to ensure that at least 50 children from 5 slum communities of Nairobi receive scholarships and school supplies to decrease the economic burden on their families. These are bright and talented children who would otherwise not have the opportunity to attend high school, due to the inadequacies of their families. In 2014, we are putting together a mentorship program that will also help model the beneficiaries into notable young leaders.
This phase of the campaign (Oktoberfest 2013) seeks to increase access the number of scholarships awarded from the current 20 students to a total of 50, which means we would wish to raise resources to support 30 more children in 2014. The campaign therefore contributes in a small but meaningful way, to the increase in the number of children from slum communities who complete their secondary education, which over the past has been significantly compromised by poverty forcing the children to drop out of school to pick up odd jobs in the city, or early marriage in the case of girls.
The cost of getting the children to remain in school and learn is small and achievable – and the potential benefits are vast. According to the UNESCO;
- Every dollar invested in education would generate 10-15 dollars in returns through higher growth
- 7 million cases of HIV/AIDS could be prevented in the next decade if every child receives an education
- A child born to a literate mother is 50% more likely to survive past the age of 5 years.
Below are the Beneficiaries.
Jorum goes to Kanga High School and is in Form 3. Prior to support from the Scholarship Fund, he had dropped out of school and had resorted to casual labour, (gabbage collection) to support his mum (Ms. Maren Oruko) who is a single mother and works as a househelp in the suburbs neighboring Kibera.
The aspiring architect is now in school and has promised to keep his grades high. Despite serious fee problems, he emerged top of his class in the end of year exams in Form 2.
MUKABANE MICHAEL JACK
Michael (14) lives in Kibera with his father, Mr. Barnabas Kwaya (a local electrician) and six other children. The little money the father gets from his small time (mostly periodic) contracts is hardly enough to support all their needs and is by far inadequate to finance their education.
He has demonstrated, excellence in academic as well as extra-curricular activities particularly football and volleyball and aspires to be an engineer upon completion of his studies. Michael says; “With this support, I am motivated to achieve my lifetime dream of being an engineer and making the world a better place for all”.
He has been enrolled into Parklands Boys High School, in Form One.
Trecie (15) lives with both the parents in Korogocho Slums. The father is paralyzed and the mother therefore provides for the family from vending vegetables. She has hopes to be a lawyer someday and support not just her parents and 3 siblings but the entire community of Korogocho – “in whatever meaningful way I can” she says.
She has been admitted to Form One in Kadika Girls Secondary School.
Arthur had stayed out of school for one year before being re-admitted to Dagoretti High School in Form 3. He lives with his grandmother (Lizzie Muhindi) in Kawangware and despite his passion for music, has aspirations of becoming a medical doctor.
He has promised to work hard to achieve this dream, and not to let this scholarship opportunity go to waste. He says; “I had lost all hope in life, and this opportunity has renewed my focus in life”
MAKOKHA CLIFF SURUMA
Born 16 years ago, he has managed to go through Primary School topping his class and finally scoring 362 marks in the 2012 Primary school Exams. His teachers’ recommendation reads in part …” he is a very disciplined boy, takes leadership, expresses himself very well, has a strong demeanor and is of an outstanding academic standard”. Suruma lives in Kibera with the father (Mr. Chrispinus Makokha) together with 3 younger siblings. The father is a casual labourer.
He has his eyes focused on journalism towards which he has been admitted to Kiborgok Secondary in Form One.
Dan has been supported by the fund to join Rangala Boys Secondary School in Form One where he will pursue his dream to be an Engineer. He comes from Kawangware Slums where he lives with the father (Stephen Owiti Odayo) and 5 siblings –all in a one room of about 10square metres. The father is a watchman and the mother recently passed.
He vows that he will have to invent/innovate some machine (he doesn’t know what exactly) that will change the world significantly. He is extremely appreciative of the scholarship and intends to study and leave his dreams.
NYAMATU ABUBAKAR NJOROGE
He is 15 years old and recently got admitted to Br. Beusang Catholic Education Centre with the support of the fund. He lives in Bul-bul with the Mother (Sophia Nyamatu) and two siblings.
Abubakar aspires to be an accountant and he says, “I want to be an accountant because I like mathematics, and it’s the only way I can serve the world as I do what I love most”
MELATH BETH WANGUI
Beth Wangui Melath was born 15 years ago and has gone through Primary School Education with unrelenting devotion. She sat her KCPE in 2012 and scored 325 marks despite many family challenges she has been faced with – her father recently abandoned them.
Her dream career is law. She cites, nepotism and other injustices as a hindrance to societal equality and aspires to study and advocate for the rights and equal opportunities for all Kenyans.
She lives with the Mother in Huruma, and has been admitted to St. Clavers Victonel Academy.
SHARPAN MORE JUMA
He dreams of becoming a lawyer so he can provide pro-bono services to the less fortunate in his community. His father (Solomon Juma) is a grounds-man at a local church and he has 6 siblings all of whom are in school, and so the cost is unbearable for the father. Without the scholarship, Sharpan despite a good performance in his primary school exams,would have been forced to retake Class 8.
He has been admitted to Form One in St. Ignatius Mukumu Boys High School.
We appeal to you to make a commitment to the Education of these Children. It’s a small effort that would permanently change their lives.
We are asking you to:
- Make a commitment by contributing as little as 1Euro / KES 100 to the course.
- Spread the word: Share information of the campaign on the social media. For solidarity you may use the campaign identity/logo as your Facebook and twitter profile pictures/AVI. The logo can be downloaded from the downloads section of the Oktoberfest website or Facebook Page
- Organize a fundraising event: A House Party, garage sale, car wash, cycling event, etc to support the campaign-or you could just dedicate your/your child’s birthday gifts to the campaign.
- Share your expertise; we are particularly looking for animators, creative writers, web designers, bloggers, and event organizers to help contribute to aspects of the campaign.
- JOIN US AT OKTOBERFEST 2013: Come have fun and support the course while you are it.
- Volunteer your time, to the campaign team and also in mentoring the beneficiaries
We are keen to pursue partnerships with corporates, NGOs and individuals to deliver on this campaign. Corporate support can be in-kind, and may take the shape of; fee to specific beneficiaries drawn from our long list of students in waiting, media coverage, event hosting, campaign material, and other logistical support that may be useful to the campaign including seconding of corporate staff to the campaign team. Any corporate partner will automatically have their logo/name on all campaign material, media shots and event banners and presence on the Scholarship web page.