Dhamira Moja Youth Group social enterprise profile

Dhamo

Dhamira Moja Youth Group (DHAMO) is a community based organization founded on the principal of empowering young adults who lack skills and have little or no formal education in Kenya’s Busia County.

The Dhamo idea is an African-born global grassroots movement connecting the privileged young (and young at heart) to issues of poverty in Africa and providing them with a framework for action. Anyika Khaimba, the Executive Director was kind enough to answer a few of our questions regarding Dhamira Moja.

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Social Enterprise Profile: Getembe High Vision Youth Group

Getembe High Vision Youth Group based in Nyamira County in Kenya was formed in January 2006 as a merry-go-round youth club. It was later registered as a farming youth organization. Due to the high rates of poverty, food scarcity and unemployment, the members were stimulated to initiate this project to address food insecurity, the poor health status of children resulting from under nourishment, juvenile delinquency, child labor abuse and youth unemployment.

Read our interview with Jones Oyugi, Secretary of Getembe High Vision Youth Group »»

Call for applicants – Conference in Amsterdam November

GNP+ would like to invite young people living with HIV to apply to attend a meeting in Amsterdam, the Netherlands, in November 2011.

The meeting will be the final part of a consultative process through which has been developed as a Leadership Programme for young people living with HIV, as a part of the Y+ Programme.

The first part of the consultative process begins with e-consultations and focus group discussions taking place in September and October.

The Y+ Leadership Programme will support young people living with HIV to acquire the skills and experience required to take on leadership roles within the positive community and throughout the HIV response, at the community, national, regional and global levels.

A small number of individuals are being sought to attend the consultative meeting in November (1-2) 2011, in Amsterdam, with a number of other YPLHIV and established leaders and key stakeholders.

The purpose of the meeting is to get a fuller understanding of the leadership capacity needs of YPLHIV and what enablers and challenges exist to enhance this capacity. This will inform the final stage of the programme design process.

Eligibility

You are eligible to apply if:

  • You are under the age of 30 and openly living with HIV.
  • You are able to speak fluent English, as the meeting will be conducted in English.
  • You are connected to a community, national, regional or global network of people living with HIV or young people living with HIV.
  • You have experience at the community, national, regional or global level in the HIV response.
  • You have some experience of other leadership support programmes.

To apply:
Please send your CV (Resume) and a statement of interest, explaining why you would be a suitable participant in this meeting (no more than 750 words). Also include a reference letter from a colleague or mentor who can support your application.

Please send these documents in an email with your full name and contact details to agarner@gnpplus.net before CoB (GMT+1) Wednesday 7th September.

For more event announcements, visit http://yipekenya.org/Events.htm

Kenya Coalition Principals Grossly Misguided about Kenyan Youth

By George Nyongesa

We are infuriated by the fact that President Mwai Kibaki and Prime Minister Raila Odinga used Jamhuri Day celebrations to level allegations of treason against the youth of Kenya. The principals’ outburst, coming hot on the heels of Government spokesman Dr. Alfred Mutua’s similar outlandish claim that the youth are receiving foreign funding to destabilize the coalition government, cannot be ignored, especially by the leadership of youth.

In this regard, we wish to address the President and Prime Minister as follows:

First, we would like to point out that the poignant claims eloquently expose the fears and uneasiness that the political establishment has over the emerging political consciousness among the youth. The language of castigations completely reeks of the status quo’s misguided view of youth as being disorganized, confused and easily manipulated. We refuse this ill-adviced definition of the youth and warn that we are indeed actively organizing to empower ourselves in order to keep on track reforms especially as espoused in Agenda 4 of the same National Accord that brought President Kibaki and Prime Minister Odinga together in a coalition government.

Second, we are not fazed by allegations of receiving support from wherever in order to realize our agenda. This is not news, as the coalition leaders never ending foreign begging trips are common knowledge. In any event, the youth are part of the wider civil society that likewise survives on primarily international funding for their activities. Also, since the coalition government will not put together empowerment programs that are not designed to control us, manage us or take us hostage, reality check demands that we work with anyone who understands our problem and genuinely wants to help.

Third, we frown upon President Kibaki and Prime Minister Raila’s attempt to plant seeds of strife and discord among youth by branding their leadership as foreign-aided coup plotters. Whilst the tag is meant to cow the emerging youth leadership, we want to boldly warn them that Agenda 4 issues, among these, youth unemployment, remain key reform and progress scorecard items for the youth; that if not comprehensively and urgently addressed by the two principal will precipitate the threatening revolution of the dissatisfied masses of youth against the cartel of political elite.

Fourth, we wish to inform President Kibaki and Prime Minister Raila that the majority Kenyan youth are quickly realizing that unless Agenda 4 items are addressed, the youth and future generations will remain victims of bad governance that is characterized by corruption, impunity, poverty and tribalism.

We are no longer at ease with the way things are and will not hesitate to latch on constitutional rights to organize to overthrow the political establishment that preys us. We want a better Kenya that is fit for all of us to realize our God given potential. Indeed the youth leadership is going round the neighborhood inspiring fellow Kenyans that with the reality of new constitution, our numbers hold the key to the change we want to see and there is nothing criminal in pursuing constitutional promises.

Fifth, Mr. President and Prime Minister, it is true we are organizing to breed a new leadership that is up to the task of bridging the differences in our society and inspire our social diversities to work together to realize prosperity and peace for all. These are the ideals the youth of our generation dream of and in the back drop of new constitution find it civic obligation and duty. We are organizing because we are dissatisfied with the periodic tokenism such as Kazi kwa Vijana, Youth Enterprise Fund and worse still a youth ministry that has turned out to be a political circus.

Mr. President and Prime Minister, we are organizing because we have come to the realization that anything this political status comes up with has in the final analysis always become another gradualism that cannot address the urgent grave situation of unemployment among youth. We are organizing because we do not want to be used and abused as political levers by political cartels. We are organizing because we are fully aware of the problems the youth face; we are aware of the solutions to those problems and we are sure that we are the leadership we need to get us out of this deep hole.

Sixth, the youth are actively involved in post-referendum civic education on the new constitution especially on the contents of chapter 6. This is because in gearing up for 2012, before the campaign propaganda and empty promises peddled by power hungry politicians clouds their judgment, it is important to empower Kenyans to realize that most of the current crop of leaders cannot stand the leadership and integrity test set by this section of the constitution.

Indeed, the next general election forebodes an overthrow of the political establishment that grossly falls short and that continues to benefit from impunity. Mr. President and Prime Minister, you must accept that Kenyan youth organizing to shake off the yoke of oppression and exploitation through ballot democracy is not a crime and it is an internationally recognized, legitimate and legal avenue for citizenry to realize their own progress.

Seventh, we find it well within our political rights and liberties to want to and accordingly to organize to legally depose an establishment rife with corruption, impunity and tribalism, and replace with one for whom the people’s agenda is central. In doing so, the youth do not act only for ourselves, but millions of Kenyans who are victims of the current bad leadership such as the thousands of internally displaced persons sleeping cold and hungry in filthy camps, thousands of youths seeking solace from joblessness in crime, alcohol, drugs and prostitution, and the millions of Kenyans on self imposed curfews as a result high insecurity in our country.

Eighth, we sympathize with the coalition principals’ embarrassment suffered after the honest and unflattering contents of WikiLeaks, but wish to categorically protest against the Machiavellian use of youth as a political distraction shield of sorts. Casting aspersions against the youth leadership as ploy to steal the public attention from revelations of WikiLeaks is in bad taste, reactionary and totally misguided and betrays how quick the principals are to sacrifice others for their own interests. Accordingly, we dismiss with contempt and term it as a gross insult, the unsolicited paternalistic advisory that had the Premier label Kenyan youth as puppets and we demand a public apology.

In conclusion, we demand that President Kibaki and Prime Minister Raila either come up with practical programs to get the youth out of the extreme poverty that makes them vulnerable to political manipulation or keep off our activities of organizing to save ourselves. We reiterate that we are peaceful and patriotic Kenyans engaging in constitution guaranteed civic actions to bring about another Kenya that is fit for all of us. We believe that the youth of Kenya are already giving so much of their own limited resources and sweeping allegations of foreign funding of youth activities is a distraction that we advice our fellow youth not to pay attention to. While we are not oblivious to the fact that the status quo will not resist misuse of state power in deploying old tricks of violence to halt our non-violent and peaceful push for meaningful reforms, we remain determined to deliver the dream and shall not relent.

Mr. Nyongesa is the National Coordinator of Bunge la Mwananchi as well as Co-convenor of the National Youth Forum in Kenya.

Press Release: Garissa County Youth Response to Dr. Alfred Mutua’s Comments on The American Aid To Kenyan Youths

This is a rare opportunity for young people to deliberate, shape and chart their destiny.

It is a departure from the past when youth were regarded as a recipient or worse still trouble makers. We shared our problems with people who not only didn’t care but also refused to listen to our voices and concerns.

The US government involvement, as driving force, was to address urgent need for youth participation in the socioeconomic, cultural and political agenda of the country. The youth fund given by USAID aims to serve the youth in the informal settlements, rural areas, small cities, pastoralist communities and towns and rural areas who bear the brunt of exclusion, deprivation, intimidation, violence, human rights violations and underdevelopment as a result of inequalities, political misgivings, intolerance, and limited access to opportunities by the youth, disregard of human rights and unaccountable system of governance by the government that is ironically concerned that we are now being empowered by external forces.

The approach by USAID is through active involvement and development of youth leadership on issues that affect them. It also endeavours to promote leadership that upholds youth interest, diversity, equality and non discrimination, information sharing, generation of knowledge and skill enhancement, partnership to strengthen youth unity, connectivity and collective action among youth are among the key approaches used by the USAID to address the youth problem.

Youth unemployment and underemployment are in our opinion Kenya’s most serious problem that continues to cause even more problems. The Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports should hit the road running on the issue and look to have viable inclusive policies as we speak now!

There have been numerous attempts by successive government to address issues of concern to the youth. The latest attempt is the Kazi Kwa Vijana program. The Kazi Kwa Vijana with its national scope was the most unsuccessful event undertaken by the government for the youth. The involvement of youths has been very minimal and youths all over Kenya have a common saying that KKV was (“kazi kwa vijana pesa kwa wazee”).

We call upon the authorities to consider change of strategy and opt for consultation and engagement. Force, threats and intimidation have failed to deal with the problems effecting the youth. Political parties have manifestos to outline their agendas for the country. These documents that are intended to guide the electorate on the best leadership and governance they will require. They lay out and issues in these documents are designed to entice and persuade the voters though implementations of the issues are debatable.

Kenyan youths have contributed a great deal to coexistence among the various communities and races. The young people contribution to sustainable peace must be enhanced. There are records of youth organizing and using their talents to communicate peace through songs and to engagement with the leaders and other community members.

The exchange program initiated by USAID among the young people from various communities and background is necessary and viable. These are learning opportunities and help young people appreciate diversity and thus deal with stereotypes, rumours and myths spoken about particular group of people that has created tension in the past. If it’s true that young Kenyans participated in the post election violence then they are also key instrument to create and preach peace through various initiative and various mode of communication.

A wide range of governmental policies and public sector programmes have particularly failed to address problems that affect the Kenyan youth. However, the youth of Kenya have refused to die!

We continue to mobilize community action, to build a community force and to claim and enjoy our God given rights, human dignity and we are in constant search of our freedom. The young people continue to work strenuously to affirm their status as permanent citizens of Kenya and the world at large. We continue to demand recognition and participation in decisions that affect our lives. We believe that we deserve better services and dignified livelihoods.

We have realized that we have a fundamental role to play in seeking credible solutions to our problems. We believe that we have the power to seek solutions to our problems. We have taken the front seat because we are the survivors, we are the ones who suffer, we are the ones who wear the shoes and know exactly where it hurts. We are committed to give birth to a new community, a new nation and new world where all humanity will rejoice and be proud, we believe this has happened with the new constitution.

The youth are organizing for real change and we are saying don’t just watch the space we also invite you to join the space! We won’t just shout we will also act!   We condemn Dr. Alfred Mutua’s remarks on the US embassy as a direct insult to the youth and utter disrespect for people who are helping in building your own home; he should instead thank the American government for being good friends of Kenya and not condemn them.

We want to thank Hon. Micheal Rannerberger (US Ambassador) for the good work he is doing with the Kenyan youth. Let President Obama know that we appreciate his encouragement and goodwill to help the youth of Kenya.

Thank you.

Kenya Youth Human Rights Camp 2010 call for Applications

Akiba Uhaki Foundation – the Human Rights and Social Justice Fund, in conjunction with the Youth Entrepreneurship & Sustainability(YES Kenya) Network, the Youth Congress and the Youth Interactive Portal for  Enterprise(YIPE) is pleased to announce a call for applications to attend the Kenya Youth Human Rights Camp 2010, set to commence on International
Human Rights Day (December 10th, 2010) to Jamhuri Day (December 12th, 2010) at the Lukenya Getaway.

This event has been organised as part of a series of actions to identify and develop young leaders who are aware of human rights and social justice and who can actively play leading roles in Kenya’s development and reform-related activities. The theme of this year’s camp is Young Kenyans-Unite for Change & Human Rights.

The Camp will make use of the concept of informal Youth Human Rights and Trade Justice Camp models as a way to encourage youth participation in a relaxed atmosphere. Facilitation of the sessions will be done by a mix of human rights and social justice practitioners and activists, so the participants will gain valuable insights on the need for both evidence-driven
advocacy and effective “street-activism” methods. In addition, a variety of fun activities will be organised to enable social interaction among the participants.

Camp activities will include:

  • Inspire-Walking the Talk Sessions: that will motivate the participants in leadership, social action, fostering human rights activism and community engagement.
  • Documentaries: the participants will view a variety of documentaries to learn about programmes on human rights and social justice built around shared best practices.
  • Open Space: this will be an open area that will provide an opportunity for the participants to share and discuss stories and issues related to this year’s theme.
  • And of course, a variety of Fun Events!

Eligibility criteria:

Applicants must be Kenyan citizens, aged between 18 and 25 years and have completed secondary school. In the spirit of human rights and equity for all, all youth within the stipulated age bracket are encouraged to apply, regardless of gender, disability, religious affiliations, etc.

How to apply to attend the Kenya Young Leaders Human Rights Camp 2010:

For the 2010 Camp, only 50 candidates will be invited to attend. In order to apply, candidates will have to fill out an APPLICATION FORM available for download.

The deadline for applications will be Monday 22nd November, 2010. Participation is free.

Download the Press Release for more information

The IREN Think Tank Forum for Youth on the East Africa Community

Date: October 1-2, 2010

Venue: Panafric Hotel, Nairobi Kenya

The East Africa Community is here; with it are both challenges and opportunities. The Inter Region Economic Network (IREN) will host a brainstorming session for the region’s youth as from October 1– 2, 2010. Brainstorming sessions will be preceded by presentations from experts on East Africa affairs and education in general. The outcome of the brainstorming sessions will be presented to a select number of business leaders from the region and officials of the EAC early next year.

Eligibility Criteria

• Must be aged between 18 and 35 yrs
• Answer the simple IREN East Africa Community Quiz
• Submit your CV
• A letter expressing interest to attend the forum
• Ksh 100 fee upon confirmation of your request to participate *(please DO NOT SUBMIT FEE until you hear from us!)

Limited number of scholarships available for non Kenyans for accommodation and travel on first come first qualify basis; all Kenyan delegates will be “day scholars.”

The Inter Region Economic Network (IREN) is a leading African think tank that promotes ideas and strategies geared towards improving the living standards in Africa. Founded in 2001, IREN has organized over 72 high profile forums and hosted over 4,500 delegates from across the globe with varied professional background. These have included high school and university students, farmers, civil society leaders, journalists, policy makers and business leaders who met to discuss issues focused on Africa’s economic development.

For more information contact:

The Events Manager
Inter Region Economic Network (IREN)
Nyaku House Mezzanine Flr.
Argwings Kodhek Rd. Hurlingham.
Box 135 GPO Nairobi Kenya,
Phone 254-20-2731497
Fax 254-20-2723258,
Email info@irenkenya.com , events@irenkenya.com
http://www.irenkenya.com/