As February rolls into March, tensions begin building in secondary schools across Kenya. Each morning principals, teachers and especially student restlessly check the news in anticipation of the K.C.S.E test results: the exam that defines each student’s high school performance and determines their ability to attend university. Daraja Academy’s level of eagerness has been just
Daraja administrators have just completed Student Selection for our new Form 1 (first year) class. Here Daraja founder, Jenni Doherty, gives a view into what Student Selection trips are like: We have 2 more days to go on Student Selection and we are spending the night in Makindu (a small truck stop town on the Mombasa
With 2013 coming to a close, we’d like to take a walk down memory lane and look back on such a momentous year for Daraja Academy. January started off with a new school year - the 5th for Daraja. Second, third, and fourth-year students returned to campus excited for the upcoming year, eager to learn.
For much of the world, the November, December, and January months signify a time of celebration, quality time, and meaningful gift giving. In Kenya, holiday celebrations do not differ much from the United States. Right now, Daraja students are on break from classes and are home with their families. They are celebrating holidays, spending time
There’s a little thing we call “Daraja Fever,” that visitors and volunteers often catch and spread during and after visiting campus. Symptoms include sore cheeks from smiling, a full heart of love, and a plaguing desire to return once you’ve left. Experiencing campus and meeting the Daraja girls isn’t something that everyone is able to
In August of this year, Daraja celebrated our first graduating class of girls. After four years of secondary school classes and a five-month Transition Program, Lillian walked across the stage on Daraja’s campus and received Daraja’s equivalent of a diploma- a certificate of program completion- as well as her official “leaving documents,” standard for graduated
At the end of each term, Daraja students ritualistically sit down for one of their favorite activities and traditions on campus- writing sponsor letters. Because sponsors are truly the lifeblood of Daraja and the enablers for Daraja’s programs, the girls get excited to share their lives and stories with their sponsors time and time again.
At the end of each term, Daraja girls venture to their home communities for a short break for two weeks to over a month, depending on the time of year. Comparable to summer breaks and winter holidays in the United States, the girls always look forward to seeing their families and friends during their time
Thanks to a dedicated staff, life on campus runs smoothly each day. With sometimes over 200 mouths to feed, a farm to tend to, and the security of the campus to ensure, Daraja employs a large local staff in order to keep things up and running. Many of these staff members have been working on
When end of term exams ended on Thursday, November 14th, first, second, and third year students left campus for school break before the new 2014 school year begins in January. That is, except for three soon-to-be fourth year students, Moreen Kajuju, Mary S, and Mesret, who stayed behind to participate in a Youth Forum for
When she arrived at Daraja Academy four years ago, Joyce was quiet and nervous, but undoubtedly determined for a better future. Although she grew up in an environment with little encouragement and no positive role models, Joyce was determined to continue her education past primary school. During her first and second years at Daraja, Joyce
Since Daraja’s first graduation ceremony in August, our graduates have dispersed themselves throughout the country, each with a separate journey. Some graduates have been volunteering before their January report date for University attendance, some have already started their University classes or are starting in January, some have been teaching, some have found jobs with banks