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Project information

Harambee Schools Kenya Bursary Fund

We want to support the very neediest Kenyan children through the schools we have built. Our Bursary Fund pays the school fees of children who are orphaned, often through HIV/AIDS, or otherwise destitute, at two of our schools. We support those children who would otherwise be overlooked completely.

January 2012 - December 2016

Charity information: Harambee Schools Kenya

Harambee Schools Kenya logo
  • Need


    Despite major international aid and government subsidies, many Kenyan families struggle to make a "dollar a day", let alone pay the £120 needed to put their child in school for a year. On top of this, the election violence in 2007 left scores of families in our area destitute and isolated. Headmasters have to send home children who can't keep up with their fees payments, which permanently disrupts their education. To serve the whole local community, our schools need financial assistance.


    Our Bursary Fund sponsors the most needy children in our area to attend several of our schools. Together with local headmasters we identify and interview the most needy families, and we then pay their school fees and in some cases supply them with uniform, equipment and stationery. When we select a student we always sponsor him or her throughout their entire time at school, so their education is guaranteed. We aim to break forever the cycle of poverty among families in our area.

  • Aims

    Aim 1

    To sponsor the education of most needy children in our area of operation.


    » Paying for selected children to attend the primary and secondary (but generally secondary) schools we support. We always pay their fees in full.

    What success will look like

    Success will be supporting as many children as possible, and rigorously interviewing potential children and their families to ensure they are genuinely needy.

    Aim 2

    To support the families of the children we sponsor.


    » Relieving families of the burden of paying school fees, leaving them with more money to spend on food, clothing and housing.
    » In some cases providing the children we select with uniform, school equipment and stationery.

    What success will look like

    Success will be monitored by headmasters and local community elders, who will see the knock-on effects of our sponsorship and report back to us on its effectiveness.

    Aim 3

    To improve the attendance rate, exam results and finances of the schools we support.


    » Relieving schools of the burden of themselves sponsoring or subsidising these students.
    » Ensuring the most needy students do not need to drop out because of fees problems.

    What success will look like

    Success will be measured quantitatively through school statistics and through the close working partnerships we have with the headmasters of our schools.

  • Impact


    Providing the neediest children with an education will help lift them out of the cycle of poverty. They will be in a stronger position to gain employment and so support themselves and their immediate and extended families, both now and in future generations. Furthermore, levelling out inequalities in education is well-known to lead to better community and tribal relations and so a higher quality of life and economic and political security.


    There is a risk we could misidentify the neediest students, or overlook a student deserving of support. We will overcome this by advertising our scheme widely at all levels of the community, and by rigorously interviewing all applicants.

    There is a risk that political instability could affect our schools and the fees they have to charge. We will mitigate this by keeping extra funds in reserve and constantly monitoring the political situation.


    We will send donors a report on the Bursary Fund every six months, in addition to a yearly HSK newsletter. (We generally make decisions on sponsorship only once a year, before the start of the school term in January.) If a donor wishes more regular updates, we are more than happy to oblige.

  • Budget

    Budget - Project Cost: £79,200

    Loading graph....
      Amount Heading Description
      £48,000 100 scholarships at Ngecho To sponsor 100 children through Ngecho Secondary School between 2012 and 2017
      £31,200 60 scholarships at Kekopey To sponsor 60 children through Kekopey Secondary School between 2012 and 2017

    Current Funding / Pledges

    Source Amount
    Local fundraising £10,000 Guaranteed
    A major UK school £10,000 Guaranteed
  • Background


    We are based in the rural highlands around the town of Gilgil, 120km north-west of Nairobi, Kenya. We have worked in the same small area since we were founded in 1999. It is an area largely of semi-subsistence arid farming, which despite international aid and recent economic and political development is still in places extremely poor.


    We aim to benefit the entire local community around Gilgil, but in particular the very poorest families and children and the schools they attend. Many children lack one or both parents, often through HIV/AIDS, and in the violence in 2007 many families were relocated here without their belongings nor enough money to survive. As well as assisting these families directly, we aim to support the entire local community by developing their schools and reducing poverty and its many ill-effects.

  • Why Us?

    Why Us?

    We have worked in the same area since 1999, where we have raised £700,000 for school-building projects. We personally know every headmaster and every teacher in all the schools we support, and we work with locals and European residents who have spent their whole lives in the area. We are entirely volunteer-run, which means that 98% of the donations we receive goes where it's needed on the ground. We know where every penny has gone, and exactly what it's achieved.

    Read more about the Charity running this project.


    UK Trustees

    Our UK trustees oversee and direct all our activities in both the UK and Kenya, including the dispersement of the Bursary Fund.

    Kenyan Staff

    Our Kenyan staff will liaise directly with local headmasters to arrange funds and interview prospective beneficiaries.

    Local Headmasters And Community Leaders

    The community leaders we work with help us identify the most needy students and then look after their progress while they are in school.

Kamahia Primary School, Gilgil

Kamahia Primary School, Gilgil


Sponsors one child at Ngecho Secondary School

Our Bursary Fund looks for the poorest and changes their lives.

Will Snell, HSK Chairman