Learn for Life Kenya is committed to economic development in Kenya. Connecting young people to the vocational and entrepreneurial skills necessary to sustain themselves and impact their community is our goal.
While we are actively raising funds to build a vocational training center at the Tumaini Children’s Home, an orphanage in Nyeri, Kenya, we are also currently working with the greatest resource available for change: motivated, visionary, young people with a desire to impact their community! These young people all previously resided at Tumaini Children’s Home.
Working with our partners at Tumaini Children’s Home and the Tumaini-Huruma Alumni Association, Learn for Life Kenya supports economic development by strengthening vocational skills training initiatives, entrepreneurial projects, civic mindedness and sustainable methods through leadership development.
Learn for Life Kenya has launched a social enterprise initiative with our partners: poultry farming. Managed by the alumni of the Tumaini Children’s Home, this initiative will teach contextually relevant fundamentals in agriculture and business.
As Bill Gates recently summarized in a blog post, poultry farming is important in impoverished communities because: “[chickens] are easy and inexpensive to take care of; they are a good investment; they help keep children healthy; and they empower women.” In fact, the Gates Foundation is actively engaging with partners in sub-Saharan Africa to create sustainable market systems for poultry.
Learn For Life Kenya shares this perspective and is committed to utilizing the resources available now in preparation to launch the poultry social entrepreneurship initiative. The goal is to scale to the surrounding community, which has a population of approximately 22,000 residents. Lessons learned from this project will be incorporated into the vocational skills programming of the broader training center building project when complete.
Learn for Life Kenya has launched a second social enterprise initiative with our partners: bread baking. Like the poultry enterprise, the alumni of the Tumaini Children’s Home will manage the bakery enterprise. This initiative will teach contextually relevant fundamentals in culinary arts and business.
Always committed to utilizing available resources, Learn For Life Kenya sponsored both the refurbishment of an older stone oven, donated a few years ago by generous friends of the children’s home, and the purchase of a new oven, along with other cooking appliances, supplies, and training necessary to position this initiative for success.
The bakery enterprise will provide fresh baked bread to the children’s homes and be sold in local markets. Lessons learned from this project will be incorporated into the vocational skills programming of the broader training center building project when complete.
Meet Sidney: Poultry & Bakery Enterprise Manager
Sidney Muthungu is the inaugural manager of the newly launched bakery and poultry enterprises at the Tumaini and Huruma orphanges in Nyeri, Kenya. Sidney was recruited by the Tumaini Huruma Alumni Association, a Community Based Organization that partners with Learn for Life Kenya. Together, we are grateful to our donors for enabling the launch of these enterprises that will be led and managed by youth in the community.
Sidney joined Tumaini Children’s Home in 1989 due to family hardships. He had just graduated from elementary school with exemplary performance and the community recognized the need to provide him with a stable environment. He credits the orphanage for nurturing, molding, and motivating him to achieve his dream of being an Accountant.
Following his graduation from high school, he received sponsorship from a loving and caring US family and enrolled at the Cooperative University of Kenya in Nairobi. In 2015, he successfully completed a Diploma in Cooperative Management focused on Management, Computer, Law and Accountancy.
Sidney has remained connected with the Tumaini Home and is an active member of the Alumni Association. He says the Home is his source of joy and he especially enjoys the annual Alumni Day since “It is a lot of fun as we gather and share our achievements and experiences with our dear sisters and brothers who are inspired to keep working hard.”
He describes the opportunity to serve as a manager of two businesses as life changing and is happy to be baking sweet bread initially for the orphanages and eventually for retail. He is enjoying watching the 300 chickens mature everyday and is excited about their potential to generate revenue. He says that he is “taking notes on how to lead and grow the businesses and reading business articles to keep my mind well rounded.”
Sidney is especially looking forward to inspiring the youth to achieve their dream — especially his dear sisters and brothers at the Tumaini & Huruma Children’s Homes.
Learn for Life Kenya will measure the effectiveness of the poultry and baking social enterprises along our three pathways to change:
Vocational Training Skills
Number of trainees enrolled in the initiative
Number of students completing poultry business training courses
Number of individuals employed by poultry business
Number of new poultry businesses initiated by the initiative
Revenue realized from poultry business
Length of time for poultry business to achieve positive return on investment
Financial contributions plowed back to the Tumaini Children’s Home to support operations
Number and type of partnerships created (e.g., with the neighboring Wambugu Farm Agricultural Center)
Market penetration rate