education

Hope in Despair

Alice is a fourth year at the Technical University of Kenya, studying Biochemistry. She attended Starehe Girls Center where she got into the GGBC program.

Where did you grow up and how was your childhood?

I grew up in Githurai 45 from up to the age of eight years. My mother - a single parent - passed on when I was only eight years. A kind lady took me in at her children’s home called God With Us in Maziwa, Githurai it became my new home and I attended a local primary school. I did a great deal of learning at that home, it shaped me. I’m grateful because I was among the blessed ones, or the lucky ones, because she treated me as her child.

How was it in the children’s home at the beginning?

It was challenging, because she’s running the children’s home with minimal support. It was a small home of about 15 children but still tough to run without donor help. I think she sustained it because it was her calling. She’s a strong woman, she’s overcame a lot.

How was the experience of Starehe Girls?

It was a great school that molded me to be who I am today. It was more than just excelling academically (she scored an A-) it was about life beyond school. GGBC was also a great eye opener, and the biggest lesson I got there was to foster a sense of responsibility: What am I doing for myself and for my society? Because poverty isn’t an excuse. There is so much one can offer to make the next generation better.

Talking of poverty, what do you think is your wealth?

I think my wealth is in my soul. It speaks to people. Whenever I get into a room, and I speak to people – I like speaking - they listen. I love when I go places and train people, talk to them, mentor them. I think I inspire positivity not only with my own personal story but also how I view life. I’m currently giving back through Discover Me initiative, a group that we started with my friends. We mentor students and give them the skills we were given in GGBC. I also do my personal give back. I send some contribution to the Twakutukuza Trust Fund to help support people with cancer.

Tell us about your mentor?

She’s Ann Power. She lives in Canada. She’s a wife, a mother, and she works in government. We’ve never met but we communicate via emails, Facebook, and she’s like one of my many mothers I have. She’s my role model, from far. She helps me when I’m having challenges in life, gives me new perspectives and insights. ’l write her an email with a lot of questions and she’ll tell you, “what do you want to do?”

What are you planning with life?

I’m in my last year – fourth year - and it’s very challenging time because I need to excel. To be honest I’m not sure where life will take me because I also have other interests apart from Bio-Chemistry. I’m a compassionate person and I think that’s skill I can use to help humanity. I’m thinking about being a tutor, or a teacher. I think I can shape a generation through that.

Are you happy now?

I haven’t reached the optimum which is when I realize what I want to do for this country, for this world. Because I haven’t gotten there yet. My passion is to bring change.

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