In 2002, I went to Kenya for a summer college internship with an organization called Global Routes. During my internship I lived with a family, taught English and art, traveled and learned an incredible amount about Kenyan culture. With previously collected donations from the U.S. I facilitated two mural projects, involving over 800 students. This project showed me just how much was possible with enthusiasm and support from a large group of community members both from Kenya and the U.S.
After spending three months in Kenya, I became increasingly aware of the lack of education in the country. Kenyan government does not pay for school fees after primary school, the equivalent of 8th grade. This leaves many children uneducated which leads to lack of jobs, infrastructure and often violence throughout the entire country.
I returned to the U.S. with a goal to establish pen-pal type relationships with students in Kenya and individuals from the U.S. who were willing to sponsor the students secondary education. My mother, Donna Mullins and I formed Kenya Youth Sponsorship in January, 2003. Beginning with support from many generous sponsors from the United Methodist Church in Evergreen, Colorado, we began with 10 students in our program and since then, we have sponsored more than 60 students with donations from five countries. 31 of these students have graduated from secondary school and some are now in college or vocational training programs.
I hope you'll consider joining our effort, Heather