Project information

Miriu Secondary School Library Makeover Project

We want to make the library at Miriu Secondary School, Kenya, a better place to learn and study. Access to good quality books, a quiet place to study and being able to borrow books to learn at home are the key to success for the orphans & very poor students supported by Zest for Life.

2 months

Charity information: Zest For Life

Zest For Life logo
  • Need


    The strong performance of the students we sponsor through Secondary School could be improved. We know that improving reading and English skills contribute to higher grades across all subject areas. A similar project delivered at our partner Primary school improved English scores in a very short space of time with the school going to the top of the District league for the first time and young lady gaining entry to one of the best secondary schools in Kenya.


    Access to a wide range of good quality books is the key to improving examination scores across the curriculum Improving the learning environment will offer them better opportunities to study in a quiet, well resourced library. Opening up access to books to take home through a lending library service for all to use will encourage self study and improve confidence, reading and literacy skills and improve examination scores. This will create more opportunity to move on to further and education.

  • Aims

    Aim 1

    To refurbish and extend the library at Miriu Secondary School


    » Help fund improvements to an underused classroom to house the library, install shelving and fund the purchase of good quality tables and chairs
    » To involve the teachers and students in selecting and purchasing a range of reference and reading books
    » To involve the students and teachers in setting up a lending library run by student volunteers

    What success will look like

    Success will be in seeing all of the 200 students using the library and teachers using the facility for targeted tutoring for 75 sponsored students needing extra help to catch up.

  • Impact


    An improvement in examination scores throughout but especially in the final examinations. Higher final scores mean that students have better choices and more chance of entering college or university.


    We try to minimise risk by working closely with a small group of teachers within Miriu School. This Partnership Committee manages the sponsorship programme that is our core work. Realistic quotes and estimates for the work that will need to be done have been obtained and we know that the system we have set up of payment upon receipt of evidence of expenditure works well.


    We have a website that is updated regularly and issue 2 newsletters a year to all donors who wish to receive them. We also have a Facebook page.

  • Budget

    Budget - Project Cost: £3,816

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      Amount Heading Description
      £750 Refurbishment Repairing and refurbishing and old classroom
      £868 Shelving & Furniture Installing shelves and cupboards, 40 chairs and 7 long tables
      £1,375 Books To purchase a range of books & publications
      £325 Resources & Transport Library cards, paper and other resources & travel costs from this very rural area to buy books
      £498 Fees & Contingency To cover the cost of transferring funds and increases in costs

    Current Funding / Pledges

    Source Amount
    Zest for Life £300 Guaranteed
  • Background


    Miriu Secondary School is located in Nyanza province, a remote and very rural part of west Kenya. The staff and students are hard working and proud of their school but they have few resources, very little transport to the main urban centres, no mains electricity and internet services are patchy and unreliable.


    A large number of students have been orphaned by HIV, some have only one parent, the majority of the remainder come from very poor backgrounds where subsistence farming is the only family income. Schools drop out rate is affected by poverty, family responsibility, HIV as the cause of family breakdown and loss or gender related responsibilities for young women who have to stay home to care for or support siblings. Zest for Life helps students to stay in school and complete their education.

  • Why Us?

    Why Us?

    We have successfully run our student sponsorship scheme since 2008. Alongside the 1125 students per year we assist at Miriu we support 2 young men at university and 1 young woman at teacher training college.

    Read more about the Charity running this project.


    Joseph Odhong

    A Teacher at Miriu, Joseph is Secretary of the Partnership Committee that manages the sponsorship scheme on a day to day basis

    Karen Jones

    As a volunteer and Chairman of the Trustee Board, Karen manages the charity, is the main fundraiser and is responsible for strategic planning

    Keith Edwards

    A volunteer, Keiths role as Treasurer is to manage day to day finances, manage money transfers to Kenya and liase with the Head and Bursar at Miriu.


Will pay for a chair for the library