Helping people help themselves
The focus of the model of Sauti Kuu is to make economic growth that is based on locally available resources a substantial part of the economic value chain. This is because experience teaches us that even the poorest of the poor have an asset or potential that they can use to improve their living conditions. The model questions the conventional definition of poverty and creates space for interaction that enables the participants to act from a position of strength and to take active responsibility for their own lives. Against this backdrop, based on the premise of community-led advocacy and rooted in an appreciative-inquiry approach, the foundation’s important message for first contact is this: ‘Don’t give them a fish, don’t give them a hook – ask them instead if they even eat fish at all!’ We are currently testing this model in western Kenya but hope to be able to apply it all across Africa later on.
Offering reliable platforms
The Sauti Kuu Foundation wants to open up opportunities for a better future for young people in rural Kenya. In the new Sport and Resource Centre in Alego, youths acquire important capabilities, new knowledge and social skills through education and sport.
Rural life in Africa is often marked by great poverty. Many young people yearn for a better life, move to the city – and wind up in one of the slums. The Sport and Resource Centre in Alego, which will also include a facility for training in the skilled crafts, is an approach that offers an alternative to rural exodus. It seeks to introduce young people to other opportunities to earn a living in their home region.
Lust for life rather than frustration with life
For young people between the ages of 12 and 20, the Sauti Kuu Foundation Germany has come up with a workshop series under the motto ‘You Are Your Future – Lust for Life Rather than Frustration with Life’. The kick-off event was held in Tutzing, Germany, on 2 and 3 November 2014 and met with a very positive response.
In putting the programme together, care was taken to ensure that the offerings would reflect the interests of young people from disadvantaged backgrounds. The event was designed to offer young people an opportunity to get to know their own strengths, and to build upon these.
Click here to watch a video of the event.
Use what you have to get what you need
Through our work in Kenya and Germany, we work with children and adolescents in an attempt to find ways and create structures that will help them become self-reliant – mentally, socially and financially. We are quite aware, though, that the sustainability of this work depends ultimately and solely upon the dedication of young people and their families.