OLE Kenya’s YALI Challenge Underway

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OLE Kenya launched the Young African Leaders Initiative (YALI) Challenge program in Nairobi, Kenya the first week of May with support provided by the Public Affairs office of the US Embassy. The YALI program is an initiative by President Obama to support an emerging generation of African leaders as they work to drive economic growth, enhance democratic governance, and strengthen the civil society structures that will help the continent grow and prosper. Five hundred YALI Mandella Fellows were chosen this past year with the program scheduled to expand to 1,000 by 2016.

Four community-based basic education programs are now underway, each led by a YALI Mandella Fellow.

Jacob Ouma is leading a program in Nairobi, Lang’ata, in partnership with Nairobi City Council, that will demonstrate the effectiveness of equiping public primary schools and community schools with digital libraries so that, at low cost, young learners can access a wealth of reading resources relevant to their studies.

Magdalene Kelel is leading a program in Narok, in the Masai region, to promote literacy and learning among young Maasai children who cannot access school because of distance. This project will engage an entire whole community in education, with a focus on young girls.

Ramadhani Ndiga is leading a program in Kilifi, in the Coastal Region, installing an e-learning system in especially poorly performing schools in rural areas of the County to improve the learning process by making it more interactive. This involves a partnership with the Ministry of Education, local authorities, the teachers’ union, school board members, and women’s groups.

Hope Mwanake is leading a program in Gilgil, Nakuru County,in partnership with public and private Kenyan organizations, to enable youth to expand their livelihoods options. They will be trained in entrepreneurship, business and financial management, and environmental conservation. This project will respond to the high youth unemployment rates, high poverty rates, social and economic vices such as prostitution.

OLE’s young Somali program leaders of OLE’s Community Learning Centers in the Dadaab UNHCR refugee camp traveled to Nairobi to provide technical training to the YALI Mandela Fellows on how to set up and use OLE’s BeLL Personal Learning System. They will provide ongoing support throughout the Challenge program.

Charles Wanjiru, himself a YALI alumnus, is OLE’s YALI Challenge Program Director and is being supported by Oliver Waindi, the newly appointed Executive Director of OLE Kenya. For more information about this program, contact Charles by email at charles@ole.org.