December, 2013
Kiwimbi Global
The Newsletter
Logo (w/o website)

Focus on . . .

Celebrating Christmas, 
Kenyan style




With the holiday season upon us, many of us take joy in the thoughtful gifts that we can give.  One of the exciting aspects of our US involvement in Kenya is that a little bit can go a long way.  


The Kiwimbi Global website ( always offers multiple sponsorship opportunities, starting with pencils and papers for school children and going up through camp sponsorship and above (click here to see some suggestions).  


We have also added suggestions for Holiday Gift opportunities (click here).  These are just ideas, though. Know that any amount you might choose to give will have a significant impact and we hope that you will consider the people we serve this year.


If you would like to make a donation, please click on the PayPal button at the bottom of this Newsletter or go to the Website and make your donation there. 





Mwaka mpya wenye furaha:  Happy New Year

Mwaka = year 
Miaka = years 
-pya = new
-enye = with or possessing
Furaha = joy, happiness 

News from Kenya

This month Kenya is celebrating the 50th Anniversary of its independence from colonial rule.  As Prof. Olubayi put it,


 "a reminder that this is a very young country that is still trying to construct a national culture and to figure out how to rule itself." 


All Africa and other news sources have offered a great deal of historical insight into this big event.


Kiwimbi Global is comprised currently of two entities:  Kiwimbi International, a US organization registered as a charity under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code; and Kiwimbi Kenya, a Community Based Organization established in the Teso North District in Kenya.  Ultimately, our goal is to replicate best practices from Kiwimbi Kenya elsewhere, creating more organizations under the Kiwimbi Global umbrella.


We see a world where all people are empowered through education to enrich their lives and reach their fullest potential. 


To achieve our vision, our mission is to create regional community centers internationally.  


These centers will:


provide education, training and other learning opportunities; 


facilitate cooperation and coordination among other resource organizations; and 


provide access to innovation and technology.  


The combination of these efforts is intended to maximize self-sufficiency and self-actualization for individuals and communities to prosper.

Kiwimbi, Busia County and KCA University work together to take education to a new level in Amagoro
Kiwimbi is already having far-reaching impact rippling out from the Library that is serving as our center of operations.  With the Library open for less than a year, Kiwimbi Kenya has attracted the attention of KCA University.  The result is that, as The Star reported, 

St. Thomas Amagoro Girls Secondary School in Teso North district will host KCA University, which plans to roll out Education and Arts courses on December 2. . . Enrollment and students affairs director, Justus Mutia said: "Our long term goal is to set up campuses in 47 counties and encourage distance learning." Education and Arts Dean Edward Owino was present.

KCA is using office space in the Library building that Kiwimbi renovated earlier this year, and is running classes at St. Thomas Amagoro Girls School, one of the schools in the area most in need of academic support.  The effect of this collaboration will be life changing for some of these girls!

As Executive Director, Olubayi Olubayi explains:

Our most important achievement to date: KCA University has actually started running classes in Amagoro. KCA University officials are using our Kiwimbi Center for office space. They are using the girls' high school for temporary classrooms before they move into their own building in January of 2014.

Images of Kiwimbi

Rising Grade 8 Students Begin Their Work Early

In November, our first group of Grade 8 students took the KCPE national exam.  We expect to learn the results in the spring.  You may recall that we started with over 130 students whom we divided into two groups, with one group designated at the Kiwimbi Club students and the second group as the control group that would enable us to measure the impact of our work.  

Soon thereafter, our plans were foiled when the students' committed teachers reacted against leaving some of their students out of the project.  They started a program to replicate what Kiwimbi Kenya was doing and expand the benefit to all of the Grade 8 students.  We were thrilled that they recognized the benefits of the our work even if it did mean that we were unable to measure our results as we would have liked.  

After just a year of study, those students are moving on - we will be sure to let you know the results once we know.  In the meantime, Kiwimbi Kenya didn't want to waste any time with the next group of Grade 8 students so we began our initial camp for them as soon as the break began in November and will reproduce our Grade 8 program for them starting with the new academic year in January.   

These students will get the free lunch that enables them to stay at school rather than walking home mid-day. They are already enjoying the benefits of our camp where the current emphasis is on reading in English (the language of the national exams) and learning multiplication tables and other tools that will give them a step up in their education.  

We have learned from our first year of experience (for instance, this year we are focusing on the full grade, not just half the students) and will know even more after we get the final exam results from this year.  That said, we are already seeing positive results (students doing better academically than they have in these schools previously) and enthusiasm for the possibilities to come!  
Top Students Assisting Others
Kiwimbi could not do what it does without the work of a number of people, the majority of whom volunteer their time.  Community service learned and modeled early will pay off tremendously in the long run. Educators also know that the very act of teaching helps students to learn, so having students tutor other students is a win / win all around.

Four very special volunteers are shown below:  Tiberious Abosso, Victor 
Etete Emolot, Joakim Otete and Marion Tata. These students are among the first group of Kiwimbi Club "graduates" and have been tapped to assist the rising Grade 8 students with their studies.  According to the class teacher, Mr. Evans Okwenye:

These four pupils were selected to join our pioneer peer tutoring team because they are among the top 10% in academic performance, and simultaneously among the top 5% in leadership at Amagoro Primary.

Tiberious, Victor, Joakim and Marion
Kiwimbi Kenya's first peer tutors



Kiwimbi Introduces its New Facebook page


We are proud to announce the launching of the Kiwimbi fan page on Facebook.  Check us out on Facebook and let us know what you think!  While you are there, we hope you will like us so that we can successfully build our social media presence! 

Kiwimbi International Welcomes New Trustee Jim Maher

Kiwimbi International is thrilled to report that Jim Maher has joined our Board.  Jim is the Chief Risk Officer at Platinum Underwriters Re Inc. in New York.  Equally exciting for us is that Jim actually taught high school in Kenya (in the Nakuru area) for over two years before beginning his career in Insurance and Reinsurance. Welcome aboard!

Kiwimbi Plans First Service Trip to Amagoro from the United States 


So many people have expressed interest in "hands on" contributions to our efforts in Kenya that we are exploring the possibility of taking a small group of families to Amagoro in the summer of 2014.  Fortunately, Olubayi has a great deal of experience with managing trips from the US to Africa, so we will rely on his expertise as we develop a program with interested families.  There is a lot to do!  Service learning occurs in three phases: preparation, which takes place before the trip; action, which takes place during the actual trip; and reflection which takes place every evening and at the end of the trip.   If you are interested in joining us, please email  Our first organizational meeting is coming up soon!


Kiwimbi International is a public charity under 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code.  We welcome contributions, which are tax-deductible to the extent permitted by law.    

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For more information about Kiwimbi or details about other ways to help, please contact us at