As promised, we are pleased to share our Christmas campaign for the Lovely Ones Educational Center in Kayole, Kenya.
Together with customers and partners, we collected donations for school children. One of our employees drew our attention to the association Lovely Ones e.V., active in Kayole. Here, in one of the poorest districts of Nairobi, is the Lovely Ones Educational Centre, where over 50 children are currently being educated. The school was founded as a joint initiative of Kenyan and German teachers during a teacher training seminar in Nairobi. The school has several classrooms, a schoolyard, a fenced area, and a concrete foundation that ensures dry feet in class even in the rainy season.
Educational prospects in Kenya
Kenya has continuously invested in the education system over the past decades. Since 2003, there have been free primary schools that children can attend for eight years until they graduate with a Certificate of Primary Education. The school enrolment rate has increased by 40 percent since then. Nevertheless, many schools remain underfunded. Classes have many pupils, funds for building maintenance, teachers' salaries, and teaching materials are always lacking. In addition, families have to finance school uniforms, notebooks, and pencils. Without the help of NGOs, private initiatives, or churches, this is not possible for many people. Especially in the poor areas, therefore, just 10 percent of the pupils graduate from primary school. The illiteracy rate is currently still at 24 percent.
The Lovely Ones Initiative
One of the private initiatives to remedy this is the Lovely Ones Association. In 2010, German and Kenyan teachers got to know each other at a seminar in Nairobi exchanged information about the educational systems of their countries, teaching methods, and social influences that affect the educational level of children. Solomon, one of the trainee teachers and current director of the Educational Centre, spoke about the situation in Kayole, where he grew up. Here, free access to education is elementary; poverty determines the lives of families, financing school attendance is often not possible for a period of eight years and for families with several children. Solomon himself has experienced the difference education makes and wants to pass on this experience to the children in his neighborhood. Together, the group decided to get involved here. In 2010, they were able to rent a space in which the initiative built three classrooms. After several moves and a growing student body, the Lovely Ones Educational Centre has arrived in its current premises and is now run by seven teachers. Children are taught here, get a meal, and stay all day: The Lovely One's Centre is their harbor.
In December, we asked clients, partners, and friends to donate the Lovely Ones on their behalf. We were allowed to. We have personal contact with the local charity through one of our employees and can ensure that all donations go right there. We invited Thomas from the Lovely Ones for our virtual Christmas party, who told us about the school's history, how they run it, and how it is financed.
We helped support the running costs for teachers' salaries, building maintenance, security, and the meal program with our Christmas campaign. We were able to raise €3,750.00 for the Lovely One's Educational Center and are happy to support a project committed to educational justice and a better future for children in Kayole. We want to thank our customers and partners who were immediately willing to participate and wanted to know more about the project.
Please find more background info and pictures from Kayole on the Lovely Ones website.
Anja Dilk: Education in the slum of Nairobi (19.07.2017), in Erziehung und Wissenschaft 07-08/2017 : https://www.gew.de/fileadmin/media/publikationen/hv/Zeitschriften/Erziehung_und_Wissenschaft/ 2017/EW_07-08_2017_web.pdf