Meet a graduating scholar: Congratulations Julia Brenda Omondi, Kenya

133e2184-57a1-4c04-9281-449671678a37“Having a degree in Psychology will open a new window of job opportunities for me of which I am ready and willing to take advantage of.”

Meet Julia Omondi, a 2016 Watipa scholar, who is graduating this year with a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology (Counselling) from the University of Nairobi, Kenya. Congratulations Julia – your hard work has paid off!

I am very proud of how far I have come. Looking back, I started out without a steady means of getting school fees, and my grades were really affected. However, since Watipa started supporting me by paying my school fees, my grades improved. In addition, being a Watipa scholar has given me the opportunity to be a part of an international group of scholars like myself, which is always a motivation. I find myself challenged by how much other young people in different countries are doing for their communities. Plus, some conversations we have on different topics such as climate change and human sexuality also make you see things in a different light. This enables one to learn. Seeing other scholars graduate has also been motivating. Being a part of the Watipa committee that makes recommendations to the Board of Trustees has been amazing.

Sometimes, standing before the young women I reach out to, I cannot ignore the fact that some, if not most of them, view me as a role model. So sometimes I share my personal story with them. For example, in August this year I was giving a group of sponsored students a talk. The high school students had not been performing well and I used my experience with Watipa to encourage them. I shared with them that there should be gradual improvement in their grades now that they no-longer endure the burden of unpaid school fees. I used myself as an example. I am proud of the opportunities I have received to support adolescent girls and young women in the community. Continue reading “Meet a graduating scholar: Congratulations Julia Brenda Omondi, Kenya”

Water = life. Essential for development.

Main waterway surrounding Elias' university
The main waterway near the Technical University of Mombasa, Kenya, where Elias studies.

I am Elias Mwangi, in my 5thyear of study towards a Bachelors degree in Civil Engineering from the Technical University of Mombasa, Kenya.

Elias at home
Elias Mwagi, Watipa Scholar, at home in Kenya

To get involved with World Water Week 2018 (26 – 31 August, 2018), I found out some facts on water and human development in my country. I am yet to specialise in my field of study, however I am interested in a water related project. Continue reading “Water = life. Essential for development.”

Meet a scholar: Rose Omollo, Kenya

fullsizeoutput_384e“To me the sky is not the limit and I see a bright future ahead of me. I want to be the agent of those changes that I want to see in my community.”

Meet Rose Omollo, a 2016 Watipa scholar, studying Community Health and Development at Jaramogi Oginga Odinga University of Science and Technology, in Kenya. Continue reading “Meet a scholar: Rose Omollo, Kenya”

Meet a scholar: Rose Aoko Omollo, Kenya

“Now my community see me as a role model and I to behave as one, I have become an inspiration to the young girls in my community being the first girl in my family to attend university.”

Rose is studying because “it is only through education that the African countries can be elevated from the vicious cycle of poverty.”

Continue reading “Meet a scholar: Rose Aoko Omollo, Kenya”

Meet a scholar: Zingiri Amos Mwamlamba, Kenya

“Watipa has raised my hopes of achieving my goal to support my community to access quality education, clean water and food through the scholarship and believing my objectives can be achieved”.

Amos is studying to become a great civil engineer so he can support his community to access “quality education, clean water and food.” You can watch a short film Amos made for the Watipa film competition on YouTube.

Continue reading “Meet a scholar: Zingiri Amos Mwamlamba, Kenya”

“You’re only a good activist if you are alive and well”

FullSizeRender
Outreach workers often face risks to their personal safety and security when providing much needed services to marginalised of hard-to-reach communities. They often do so on a voluntary basis or for a relatively small payment compared to international aid workers who operating in the same area. The potential threats and experiences of violence are particularly acute when the organisations are run by and for communities that are criminalised under the legal framework of a particular country. These communities are in need of important health and other essential services, just like everyone. In fact, may need more services given the vulnerabilities and risks they face in everyday life.  Continue reading ““You’re only a good activist if you are alive and well””

Meet a scholar: Rose Omollo, Kenya

Meet Rose Omollo, who received a highly commended award in 2016 and support for her tuition fees and living expenses. Rose has previously shared a poem, Watipa my hope, that she wrote for Watipa.

Rose is a young woman aged 23, studying a Bachelor of Community Health and Development in Kenya, and received a highly commended award as one of the inaugural Watipa scholars

Watipa in Kenya: Discussing politics and Italian food

FullSizeRenderIn March 2017, Watipa hosted a meeting of the Kenyan scholars. In December 2016, 5 young Kenyans received inaugural Watipa scholarships. For the meeting in Nairobi, two of the scholars, Julia Omondi and Zingiri Amos Mwamlamba, were able to travel to Nairobi to meet Lucy Stackpool-Moore for dinner.

All three are outsiders to Nairobi, and at first glance, the trio did not appear to have much in common.  Continue reading “Watipa in Kenya: Discussing politics and Italian food”

Watipa my hope

A poem by Rose Omollo, a Watipa scholar from Kenya

Call me Watipa meaning giving hope
To where the future seems bleak
A bridge to cross through to the other side of the road
Because of Watipa, we have been nurtured to be ambassadors
To carry this hope with us eveyday of our lives Continue reading “Watipa my hope”