Essay Example on Shining Hope: Jessica & Kennedy's Quest to Transform Kibera Slums

Paper Type:  Essay
Pages:  3
Wordcount:  686 Words
Date:  2023-04-30

Shining Hope for Communities was a program started by Jessica Posner and Kennedy Odede. Jessica is the co-founder and chief operating officer, while Kennedy is the CEO of the non-profit organization. Kennedy is a resident of the Kibera slums, which is the second-largest slum in the world and the largest in Africa. He has lived in the area for 23 years of his life and was raised by his mother. Kennedy was motivated by the challenges he saw his mother and sisters go through throughout his life, and when the opportunity came to start an empowering program woman, he took it and understood why they needed the opportunity. He had noticed that most girls end up with early pregnancies or in early marriages with nothing to offer to the family except being mothers to their children. Other barriers they faced were rape, getting underestimated and looked down upon by the community and not being heard by the people around them and their families too.

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The young girls were also exposed to the danger of female genital mutilation, which is a common practice in some African countries. Some people in these communities support such acts because they are traditions that have been in existence over the years and doing away with it would seem like betraying their customs. There are also some myths concerning such rituals, making girls outcasts and unclean if they have not undergone the ritual. In the bid to stop the prevalence of the act, the community and the organization can focus on educating them on the dangers of female circumcision. For instance, most studies suggest that female genital mutilation increases the risk of contracting chronic diseases like HIV/AIDS and other sexually transmitted diseases.

They built a Kibera School for girls, which had the aim of empowering girls. The school ensured to provide sanitization equipment for the children, a school and also helped build a water supply system for the whole community, which served more than 2000 families per day. They also built a clinic and a pharmacy that ensured that the health of the children was also a priority. By 2014, the school had about 100 children learning in the school with most of the children ranging from 4 years and above. With the child abuse and exploitation rates in the area, most of the children were shy and barely talked but with time they were taught that they have and deserved a voice for themselves other than just listening. The school is still operational to date and has helped a lot of children in Kibera slums go through their education and land themselves sponsorship programs to complete their high school and university education just like Kennedy.

Through the work they did in that area, they found that half the children in their school were malnourished because of poverty and poor living conditions. They also helped create a self-help group that helped the women in the area make and save money. This helped most of the families in the area because most families were single-parent families or families with a negligent father or the parents are not able to provide for their children. They also helped by teaching women how to use contraceptives, therefore, avoiding unwanted pregnancies. The gas and the water systems they brought were very helpful to the community because they were free of charge and the people in the community didn't have to worry about paying bills to get the services provided.

We learn that the installation of this school made a lot of impact on the community and also encouraged other people in surrounding areas to follow their example. The girl-child empowerment and education gave the children a voice to share their day to day experiences, whether good or bad. They also learned how to handle themselves in hostile situations like rape. The children, being straight-A students selected in the area was important for a good start of the school to create a good image for the school to encourage more donors and sponsors for their financial support to the school.

Work Cited

2020, Accessed 1 Apr 2020.

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Essay Example on Shining Hope: Jessica & Kennedy's Quest to Transform Kibera Slums. (2023, Apr 30). Retrieved from

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