My dear friends, 

Ten years ago, we started with just 30 fourth grade girls, and one big dream. Now, because you believed in and supported me, that dream has grown into an organization that reaches thousands of youth each year in rural Kenya. We have established two boarding schools serving over 250 girls each year and counting. Our Network for Excellence program ensures that when those girls graduate from our schools, they receive the robust academic, financial, and social support they need to succeed into adulthood. And our Health and Leadership Training program educates thousands of boys and girls in the region on their health and human rights.

In a part of the world where most girls are subjected to female genital mutilation (FGM) and child marriage and never receive more than a primary school education, our pioneer class of students are graduating from university as teachers, nurses, accountants, and more. 

How is this possible? We spent the last decade challenging conventional thinking and inviting the community to join the conversation about age-old traditional practices that harm our girls. We gained the support and admiration of the leaders and elders of our communities. We have turned fathers who were at first apathetic and skeptical about their daughters’ education into their biggest cheerleaders and our strongest allies. My heart jumps with joy when I see hundreds of Maasai fathers and mothers choosing to educate their daughters instead of subjecting them to FGM and early marriage. 

It has not been an easy road, but I could not give up on this dream. Today, Kakenya’s Dream is regarded as a leader in education across the region, and girls have more opportunities now than ever before. Our work demonstrates that positive social change takes persistence, patience, and collaboration. And at last, we can proudly say that our entire community stands with Kakenya’s Dream.

And the best is yet to come. Today, our girls are standing up for their siblings and peers. Tomorrow, they will be advocating for their daughters, granddaughters, and every generation thereafter. They are becoming the leaders our world needs. They are the changemakers who will eradicate FGM and child marriage from our world, ensuring every girl everywhere will have the opportunity to forge her own path and achieve her full potential.

As we celebrate and reflect on our achievements over the past decade, we remain firmly rooted in our original vision – a world where African women and girls are valued and respected as leaders and equal in every way. I am more ready than ever for the next 10 years of revolutionary change and all that they will bring. I hope you will join us for this next chapter ahead.

Kakenya Ntaiya, PhD
Founder & President

KCE I pioneer class, 2009
KCE I first schoolhouse, 2009
KCE I first kitchen
KCE I first dormitory
KCE II campus, 2019
Pioneer class graduates high school, 2017
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Through a decade of education, community engagement, and advocacy, we have transformed the lives of thousands of vulnerable girls across rural Kenya.

We’re celebrating all that’s been accomplished, building on what we’ve learned, and positioning ourselves to expand the work and our investment in girls as we step forward into our next decade together.

Meet Mary

“Joining KCE I in 2010 was a dream come true for me because I wanted to be empowered and become a role model in my family and community. I also wanted to be kept safe from female genital mutilation and be able to use my education to get a job one day and help my family back home.

Today, I am pursuing a bachelor of arts in education. In my family, both nuclear and extended, no one has ever attended university. I am the first girl to attend university, and this gives me great pride and motivation to work hard and smart in my studies so that I can be a role model not only to my siblings but also to the entire community. I want to become a teacher because it’s my passion. I believe a teacher is also a leader and a role model. I believe I have leadership skills and when I become a teacher, I will strive to change many lives.

I believe parents and the general public need to know that it’s such a blessing in the family and the whole society to educate a girl because once they get empowered, they will always go back to their communities and empower not only their families but the whole community.”

Meet Mary

“Joining KCE I in 2010 was a dream come true for me because I wanted to be empowered and become a role model in my family and community. I also wanted to be kept safe from female genital mutilation and be able to use my education to get a job one day and help my family back home.

Today, I am pursuing a bachelor of arts in education. In my family, both nuclear and extended, no one has ever attended university. I am the first girl to attend university, and this gives me great pride and motivation to work hard and smart in my studies so that I can be a role model not only to my siblings but also to the entire community. I want to become a teacher because it’s my passion. I believe a teacher is also a leader and a role model. I believe I have leadership skills and when I become a teacher, I will strive to change many lives.

I believe parents and the general public need to know that it’s such a blessing in the family and the whole society to educate a girl because once they get empowered, they will always go back to their communities and empower not only their families but the whole community.”

GIRLS EDUCATED AND EMPOWERED AT OUR WORLD-CLASS BOARDING SCHOOLS IN 2019:

It’s our mission at Kakenya’s Dream to support each student’s holistic health and wellbeing. In addition to providing our girls with a quality education, we also provide them with a range of fun, engaging extracurricular activities from reading and journalism clubs to handball, choir, volleyball, and Maasai quilting and beading.

200 alumnae were supported in 2019
through the Network for Excellence program to continue their education at high schools across Kenya and post-secondary institutions around the world.

In an effort to deepen our impact, this year, Kakenya’s Dream piloted a new delivery model for our Health and Leadership Training program. Previously, our Health and Leadership Trainings were delivered in periodic weekend and week-long camps held throughout the year for clusters of schools in our region.

WITH OUR NEW MODEL, OUR TRAININGS ARE NOW BEING DELIVERED TWICE WEEKLY AS AFTER SCHOOL CLUBS AT 10 PARTNER SCHOOLS. 

By giving students the opportunity to create bonds with their instructors, revisit material, and build on what they learn each week, we hope to strengthen the program’s impact by deepening participants’ understanding of the various concepts being taught each week. Over the coming years, we hope to expand this model and partner with hundreds of schools across the region to ensure that as many young people as possible have access to these vital trainings.

At Kakenya’s Dream, we make it a point to support and empower girls from the moment they enter our programs as children to the time they graduate college.

This impact does not end with the girls who come through our programs. One day, these girls will have children of their own. Like them, their daughters will avoid FGM and child marriage, receive an education, and be empowered to forge their own path and lead the life they choose.

That’s a generational impact and shift in mindset. And that is the power of Kakenya’s Dream.

Meet Chief Ole Sale

“Before the existence of Kakenya’s Dream, we never saw the value of educating girls here in Maasailand. We saw girls as an exchange for wealth. We used to marry them off.

The presence of Kakenya's Dream has brought development to all of Enoosaen. After Kakenya started transforming the lives of girls through KCE, our girls are now valued in our society, and transformation in this community has been massive. If you look at the most developed homesteads in the area now, you'll realize that they have educated their daughters.

These girls who are acquiring education through Kakenya’s Dream will become great leaders and role models in our country. Every girl in this village now wants to go to school and every family wants to send their daughter to school because they have seen what girls’ empowerment can do.”

Meet Chief Ole Sale

“Before the existence of Kakenya’s Dream, we never saw the value of educating girls here in Maasailand. We saw girls as an exchange for wealth. We used to marry them off.

The presence of Kakenya's Dream has brought development to all of Enoosaen. After Kakenya started transforming the lives of girls through KCE, our girls are now valued in our society, and transformation in this community has been massive. If you look at the most developed homesteads in the area now, you'll realize that they have educated their daughters.

These girls who are acquiring education through Kakenya’s Dream will become great leaders and role models in our country. Every girl in this village now wants to go to school and every family wants to send their daughter to school because they have seen what girls’ empowerment can do.”

Meet Celestine

Pictured: Celestine and her mother

“Because of my mother and Kakenya’s Dream, I’ve realized that those practices [FGM and child marriage] are of the past and mean nothing good to women or girls’ health. The knowledge they’ve instilled in me will really help me be responsible and ensure that my future daughters are empowered through education, and protected from such retrogressive practices. I would never want to marry my daughters off. Their marriage will be their choice.”

Meet Celestine

Pictured: Celestine and her mother

“Because of my mother and Kakenya’s Dream, I’ve realized that those practices [FGM and child marriage] are of the past and mean nothing good to women or girls’ health. The knowledge they’ve instilled in me will really help me be responsible and ensure that my future daughters are empowered through education, and protected from such retrogressive practices. I would never want to marry my daughters off. Their marriage will be their choice.”

Meet Faith

Pictured: Faith and her mother

“We’ve been taught so many things about FGM and child marriage at Kakenya’s Dream. I believe it’s my responsibility to teach my future daughters the way Kakenya’s Dream has taught me, about the disadvantages of these harmful traditional practices. And to my future sons, I will tell them the importance of protecting and advocating for girls’ rights.”

Meet Faith

Pictured: Faith and her mother

“We’ve been taught so many things about FGM and child marriage at Kakenya’s Dream. I believe it’s my responsibility to teach my future daughters the way Kakenya’s Dream has taught me, about the disadvantages of these harmful traditional practices. And to my future sons, I will tell them the importance of protecting and advocating for girls’ rights.”

Meet Paul

Pictured: Paul and his daughter Sylvia

“After joining KCE I, my daughter Sylvia became so confident. She was no longer the shy, unsure girl I used to know. The students are taken through a lot of training and esteem-building, such as Health and Leadership Training, which has really helped her.

Kakenya’s Dream is a blessing to this community. Girls are now accessing education with no limitations. Orphans and the single parent children have been given an opportunity for the very first time to acquire an education.

Moreover, the prevalence of FGM is going down. Most of our girls are now able to escape the cut because of the information they’ve gotten from Kakenya’s Dream trainings.

Through Kakenya’s Dream, my daughter is now pursuing her dream career in the ICT sector. I’m also happy to say that none of my 8 daughters has been subjected to FGM.”

Meet Paul

Pictured: Paul and his daughter Sylvia

“After joining KCE I, my daughter Sylvia became so confident. She was no longer the shy, unsure girl I used to know. The students are taken through a lot of training and esteem-building, such as Health and Leadership Training, which has really helped her.

Kakenya’s Dream is a blessing to this community. Girls are now accessing education with no limitations. Orphans and the single parent children have been given an opportunity for the very first time to acquire an education.

Moreover, the prevalence of FGM is going down. Most of our girls are now able to escape the cut because of the information they’ve gotten from Kakenya’s Dream trainings.

Through Kakenya’s Dream, my daughter is now pursuing her dream career in the ICT sector. I’m also happy to say that none of my 8 daughters has been subjected to FGM.”

On behalf of all the girls whose lives we’ve changed in 2019, thank you for your generous support!

Alice Ball
Bruce and Charlene Bainum
Rachel Renée Russell
Roger Sant
Leila Strauss

Anonymous (3)
Arborview Capital
David Anderson
Patricia Begley
Donna Greenfield Belser
Nadia Benamara
Marion Blakey
Joseph Bohan
Kathleen Bonk
Denise Bordonaro
Cynthia Braun
Stephanie and Harold
Bronson
Suzanne Huston Brown
Wendell Chambliss
Farai Chigutsa
Jolley Christman
Dr. Lois Colgin
Brian Corcoran
Sarah Craven
Deborah Crewe and John Davis
Hilary A. Cusack
Gene Dahmen
John Davis
Danyelle De Jong
Karen Desnick
Norma Dicker
Jim Dieter
Jamie D’Innocenzo
Jeff Ettinger
Lionel Euston
Lisa Fratzke
Jeanna French
Barbara Friedman
Linda Gottlieb
Kathryn Graves
Deborah Gray
Susan Abrams Greig
Makiko Harrison
Alison Head
Tracy Heinzman
William Hobler Jr.
Betty Hudson
Marellen Johnson Aherne
Helen M. Johnson
Marlene Johnson
Wayne Johnson
Judy Judd-Price
Marisa Kafantis
Karl Khoury
Shira Kilcoyne
Susan Kincaid
Lou Anne King Jensen
Heather Kirkpatrick
Arlene Kogod
Karin Lawrence
Robert Leland
Thaddeus Lindner
Marian P. Mancini and Jay C. Mancini
Samuel Martinez
Morris Matson
Jacquelyn Mayfield
Barbara McCarthy
Sara McCracken
Kathy McDermott-Narezo
Maurice and Tia McNair
Scott Mellon
Sandy Meyer
Rose Miniter
Judy and Kevin Moak
Laura Murphy
Joanie D. Nasher
Steve Nelson and Samantha Adams
David Oyer
Nancy Brand Patel
Suzanne Petroni
Katherine Pickus
James Radner
Peter and Elsa Recco
Pamela Reeves
Ilene Resnick
Nancy and Miles Rubin
Kimberly Russell
Sharon Sanders
Peggy and Brian Sassi
Gary and Gail Sehorn
Lauren Hannan Shafer
Helene Shore
Matthew Sirovich
Robert and Elizabeth Soppelsa
Michele Speir
Paul Staindl
Joanne and Jim Steinback
Rabbi Shira Stutman and Russell Shaw
Yiin Tham
Leontine Thomson
Anisa Tootla
Amy Towers
Elizabeth A. (Betsy) Tyson
Kent Wanzek
Eric Waxvik
Adair White
Linda Winslow
Lee and Sam Wood
Mary Pat Woodman
Melissa Wyers
Michael Zietsman

Kakenya’s Dream strives to be complete and accurate in recognizing the generous support of our donors. We regret any omissions or errors.

AJG Foundation
Wellspring Philanthropic Advisors

The David R. and Patricia D. Atkinson Foundation
Bainum Family Foundation
ELMA Philanthropies *
Every Good Thing
Girls Opportunity Alliance
The Montei Foundation
O’Kane Family Foundation
Segal Family Foundation *

Dining for Women

Catherine Bertini Trust Fund for Girls’ Education
Coca-Cola
Roger and Katherine Flahive Foundation
Katonah Education Exchange Program
The Lester Fund
Harl and Evelyn Mansur Foundation
Donilon Russell Charitable Fund
The William Zimmerman Foundation

Louis and Anne Abrons Foundation
D.B. Anderson Charitable Foundation
The Sybiel B. Berkman Foundation
The Feminist Majority Foundation
Blossom Benefit
Friedman Family Foundation
InMaat Foundation
Edward & Sandra Meyer Foundation
Diane L. & Edward A. Powell Fund of the Community Foundation Serving
Richmond & Central Virginia
Stichting Miss Maasai
Tate Family Generosity Fund
Ruparel Family Foundation*
Zonta Club of Washington Foundation

* Revenue that was sent directly to Kenya is not included in the U.S. financials.

Please note: Multi-year pledges/payments are recognized for the full amount in the year the pledge/agreement was made.

The financials above are audited figures for the U.S. 501(c)3. There was additional revenue and expenses incurred by the Kenyan branch but those figures have not yet been audited due to COVID-19.

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