Kenya is a country comprised of coastal plains, mountainous highlands and plateaus. It is rich in beautiful scenery and resources, from limestone, to gemstones, to wildlife and hydropower. Most Kenyans live in the highlands and the capital, Nairobi, and more than 40 different ethnic groups populate the country.
Since gaining its independence from Britain in 1963, Kenya has grown into one of the more stable economies of East Africa. It has a population of 44,038,000 people, a literacy rate of 87% and a life expectancy of 63 years. It is a centre for free enterprise and technological innovation, with the now globally present mobile money sending service, M-Pesa, being just one example of this.
Despite its economic stability, Kenya struggles with governmental corruption, which is a major contributor to keeping much of the population in poverty. Kenyans are vocal about their frustrations with their government and the lack of provision available to them, but they are also hardworking and innovative; active in advocating for change, but also in coming up with home-grown, sustainable solutions to the challenges they see facing their own communities.
Mama Hope’s two partner organizations in Kisumu, a city in western Kenya on the shores of Lake Victoria, are inspiring examples of this Kenyan spirit of social action and innovation.