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Commonwealth awards Mathare Foundation Co Founder Eric Omwanda the Commonwealth Youth Worker Africa Region Winner 2016

On the 10 of November 2016 , Mathare Foundation Co Founder, Eric Omwanda, received the Commonwealth Youth Worker Award for the Africa region. Commonwealth Youth Worker Awards was established 4 years ago with the purpose of appreciating and awarding exemplary people who have dedicated their live to serve young people. Last year Eric Omwanda was a regional finalist and he promised that he is going to become the Africa winner this year. He has lived to achieve this. His contribution to youth work in Kenya is exceptional. He is an inspiration to other young people across the Commonwealth countries and specifically in the Africa.

Eric Nehemiah (Kenya), the co-founder of Mathare Foundation, which has supported over 100 young people in Kenyan slums to channel their talents through providing training in photography and art.

Mr Nehemiah said: “Society depends on young people, so if young people do not get a good foundation then our society will be in a mess. Being recognised as the overall winner for the Africa region is not something I take for granted – it’s not about me, however, it’s about the other 60 young people that I represent. With or without recognition, we as youth workers should keep on pushing

– See more at: http://thecommonwealth.org/media/press-release/social-enterprise-founder-named-commonwealth-youth-worker-year-2016#sthash.y8rSnajm.dpuf

 

http://thecommonwealth.org/media/press-release/social-enterprise-founder-named-commonwealth-youth-worker-year-2016

Mathare Foundation Releases Schedule for January to April, 2016

Mathare Foundation just released its events schedule from January to April, 2016. Check back regularly for more activities!

Slum Kids Festival

Slum Kids Festival Poster

The Slum Kids +254 Festival will take place each Saturday and Sunday from the 8th to the 23rd of April. It will include football and photography competitions for the children of Mathare Foundation, plus give children from the Nairobi slums a chance to showcase their talents and take pride in their accomplishments.

More information on the Slum Kids Festival can be found here.

 

Football

Mathare football

Football training takes place every Sunday morning from 7:00 to 9:00 AM. The practices are led by coaches Vivian Akinyi and James Ndung’u, as well as guest coaches.

More information on the Mathare Foundation football team can be found here.

 

Performing Arts

Girls from Mathare Foundation practice dancing

Performing Arts training takes place on Sundays from 2:00 to 4:30 PM and is led by Eric Omwanda and Tobias Atete.

More information on our performing arts training can be found here.

Photography

A child from Mathare Foundation reviews a photo he took

Photography training takes place Sundays from 2:00 to 4:30 PM and is led by Lydia Kibandi and Eric Omwanda.

More information on our photography training can be found here.

Write Junior Club

A Mathare Foundation child wins an award

The Write Junior Club meets on Saturdays from 2:00 to 4:30 PM and is led by Sharon Aluoch and representatives from Vizazi Organization.

More information on the Write Junior Club can be found here.

 

Full Mathare Foundation schedule for January through March

 

TIME DATE DAY TYPE OF ACTIVITY PERSON IN CHARGE
2 PM TO 4.20 PM 02/01/2016 Saturday 2015 Review
Meeting
Eric Omwanda
7 AM TO 8.30 AM 10/01/2016 Sunday Football
Training
James Ndung’u
2 PM TO 4.20 PM 10/01/2016 Sunday Meeting Eric Omwanda
2 PM TO 4.20 PM 16/01/2016 Saturday Photography Lydia Kibandi
7 AM TO 8.30 AM 17/01/2016 Sunday Football
Training
James Ndung’u
2 PM TO 4.20 PM 17/01/2016 Sunday Photography Lydia Kibandi
2 PM TO 4.20 PM 23/01/2016 Saturday Performing Arts James Ndung’u
7 AM TO 8.30 AM 24/01/2016 Sunday Football
Training
Sharon Aluoch
2 PM TO 4.20 PM 24/01/2016 Sunday Photography Eric Omwanda
2 PM TO 4.20 PM 30/01/2016 Saturday Performing Arts James Ndung’u
7 AM TO 8.30 AM 31/01/2016 Sunday Football
Training
Vivian Akinyi & Jeremiah Dodd
2 PM TO 4.20 PM 31/01/2016 Sunday Photography Tobias Atete & Eric Omwanda
2 PM TO 4.20 PM 06/02/2016 Saturday Performing Arts James Ndung’u
7 AM TO 8.30 AM 07/02/2016 Sunday Football
Training
Vivian Akinyi & Jeremiah Dodd
2 PM TO 4.20 PM 07/02/2016 Sunday Performing Arts James Ndung’u
2 PM TO 4.20 PM 13/02/2016 Saturday Photography Tobias & Eric Omwanda
7 AM TO 8.30 AM 14/02/2016 Sunday Football
Training
Vivian Akinyi
2 PM TO 4.20 PM 14/02/2016 Sunday Performing Arts James Ndung’u
2 PM TO 4.20 PM 20/02/2016 Saturday Write Junior
Club
Sharon Aluoch
7 AM TO 8.30 AM 21/02/2016 Sunday Football
Training
Vivian Akinyi
2 PM TO 4.20 PM 21/02/2016 Sunday Photography Tobias Atete & Eric Omwanda
2 PM TO 4.20 PM 27/02/2016 Saturday Write Junior
Club
Sharon Aluoch
7 AM TO 8.30 AM 28/02/2016 Sunday Football
Training
Vivian Akinyi & Jeremiah Dodd
2 PM TO 4:20 PM 28/02/2016 Sunday Photography Tobias Atete & Eric Omwanda
2 PM TO 4.20 PM 05/03/2016 Saturday Write Junior
Club
Sharon Aluoch
7 AM TO 8.30 AM 06/03/2016 Sunday Football
Training
Vivian Akinyi
2 PM TO 4.20 PM 06/03/2016 Sunday Photography Tobias Atete   & Eric Omwanda
2 PM TO 4.20 PM 12/03/2016 Saturday Write Junior
Club
Sharon Aluoch
7 AM TO 8.30 AM 12/03/2016 Sunday Football
Training
Vivian Akinyi & Jeremiah Dodd
2 PM TO 4.20 PM 13/03/2016 Sunday Performing Arts James Ndung’u
2 PM TO 4.20 PM 19/03/2016 Saturday Write Junior
Club
Sharon Aluoch
7 AM TO 8.30 AM 20/03/2016 Sunday Football
Training
Vivian Akinyi
2 PM TO 4.20 PM 20/03/2016 Sunday Photography Tobias Atete & Eric Omwanda
2 PM TO 4.20 PM 26/03/2016 Saturday Write Junior
Club
Sharon Aluoch
7 AM TO 8.30 AM 27/03/2016 Sunday Football
Training
Vivian Akinyi
2 PM TO 4.20 PM 27/03/2016 Sunday Performing Arts James Ndung’u
2 PM TO 4.20 PM 2/4/2016 Saturday Write Junior
Club
Sharon Aluoch
10 A.M TO 5 PM 8th to 23rd APRIL (Weekends) Weekends Slums Kids
Festival +254
ALL

 

Mathare Foundation Featured On CNN

Kids photograph the slum they call home

(CNN) The Mathare network of slums is perhaps the most notorious in Nairobi. Boasting a population of 500,000 — jammed into roughly half a square mile — Mathare is the second-largest slum in the Kenyan capital, and infamously tough. Marked by widespread poverty, unemployment and a high crime rate, it’s not the easiest place for children to grow up, though many do. It is also not an easy place to get an education, as school fees are a luxury many families in Mathare cannot afford.

Eric Omwanda, co-founder of the Mathare Foundation, is hoping to change that. Himself a Mathare native, Omwanda understands the challenges faced by those who call the slum home. As one of the slum’s success stories (he earns a living as a freelance photographer and football coach), he is working with some of Mathare’s youth to teach him a skill that has brought him endless inspiration: photography.

“I feel a connection with the kids,” notes Omwanda, who was a 2015 finalist for Commonwealth Africa Region Youth Worker of the Year.

“Although I come from a humble background, I felt the need to give something back to my community.”

With a handful of volunteers, Omwanda provides local children with cameras and teaches them the basics of photography.

“We try to relate the photography training to what the kids know already,” says Omwanda. “We teach in three stages: theory, where they learn about the basics like the f-stop and exposure; practical, where they learn how to handle the cameras; and fieldwork, where they go out and shoot.”

His students depict their home with a mix of tenderness and criticism, showcasing both what is good and bad about Mathare. Mainly, notes Omwanda, the photos demonstrate and exceptional use of skill.

“They take amazing photos,” he says. “They take photos that even myself, I just think, ‘this is great.'”

A student is walked through the basics

Some of the photos reflect the use of ‘Chang’aa’ — a notorious homemade brew — in the slum, with users passed out cold in the mud. While this is not reflective of all of Mathare, notes Omwanda, Chang’aa and its harmful effects can certainly be found in certain areas.

Other shots are more cheerful, showing siblings embracing, or kids enjoying a game of soccer.

The program has already generated its own success stories. In 2014, the Mathare Foundation collaborated with Canon, which donated 30 digital cameras. One of the foundation’s volunteer teachers, James Otieno, also was a runner-up in theCanon Kenya Photography Awards.

Despite this, the Mathare Foundation endures, and serves as a chance for children from the slum can meet like-minded people. “It is a second home for the kids,” says Omwanda.

Omwanda is also hoping to organize the Slum Kids Festival, a week-long event that not only would celebrate the work of his students (and award scholarship prizes), but to ward kids off the various dangers prevalent in Mathare: drugs, crime and alcohol abuse.

His ultimate hope is that his students can use the skills they learn to secure a job, perhaps in a newsroom or freelancing. At the very least, Omwanda wants them to be positive role models, and inspiration for other kids in the community.

“I want them to become ambassadors of peace,” he says.

Original article found here.

eric award

Mathare Foundation Co-Founder Eric Omwanda Gets Commonwealth Youth Workers Award

Youth workers from eleven countries – Australia, the Bahamas, Fiji, Ghana, Jamaica, Kenya, Malta and Nauru, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Uganda – were named as the National Finalists of the 2015 Commonwealth Youth Worker Awards..

Commonwealth Deputy Secretary-General Deodat Maharaj, who presented the award, stated: “The Commonwealth Youth Worker Awards recognises the achievements of youth workers, who often work in difficult circumstances, have very few resources and yet make a big difference to the lives of young people. Every youth worker named today should feel justifiably proud of their efforts, for they are national heroes.”

Among the National Finalists was the founder of  Mathare Foundation, Eric Omwanda  based in the Mathare slums of Kenya. Eric inspires the  young people with a mechanism to channel their talents through photography and divert them from crime, alcoholism and prostitution.

 

 

 

See Full Article here:

http://thecommonwealth.org/media/news/national-finalists-2015-commonwealth-youth-worker-awards-announced

 

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Mathare Foundation Featured on QTV Kenya

QTV Kenya came to the Mathare slums to cover the story of Mathare Foundation. We talked about the goals of Mathare Foundation, the importance of the community working together, and our efforts to keep children away from vulnerable situations.

The story was aired December 19th, 2015 on QTV at 11:00 a.m. and was repeated that night. We would like to give Special Thanks to Maureen Muketha, Jane Ngige, Kris Darlin, and host Potash of QTV.