U-Tena Library/Career Program Fund

$1,770 of $1,500 goal

Raised by 42 people in 32 months
Carly Paul
on behalf of Ariel Silverman
This summer three members of GlobeMed at Brown University (Ariel Silverman, Carly Paul, and Sierra Fisher) will be traveling to Kenya for six weeks to intern with U-tena our long time partner. This fundraiser serves to support the growth of U-tenas library and the establishment of a career focused portion of the Kuza mentorship program for girls.  We hope to raise $600 for books, and $300 for the establishment of a career development program and $400 towards overall program support (female care, crafting supplies, college visits). We're glad you found our page! Please read on :)

Who We Are // GlobeMed at Brown University

Founded in 2011, GlobeMed at Brown University is one of 50 university based GlobeMed chapters working to improve the health of people living in poverty around the world. In striving for this goal, we partner with the grassroots organization Ungano-Tena (U-Tena) located in Nairobi, Kenya to support programs that develop creative and innovative solutions to raise awareness about sexual health practices and improve the health, education and quality of life within their communities. Through performance, U-Tena, dispels myths related to HIV transmission and encourages testing, treatment, and discussions around family planning and sexual and reproductive health. Furthermore U-Tena provides a mentorship program for girls ages 13-17 in the Mukuru slum to learn lifeskills, sexual, reproductive, and mental health, and financial management. 

Our Partner // Ungano-Tena in Nairobi, Kenya


Ungano Tena (U-Tena) is Swahili for reuniting – coming back together. U-Tena is a grassroots community-based organization created in 2005 by youth from the Viwandani-Mukuru slum in East Nairobi. U-Tena’s mission is to educate local communities about sexual and reproductive health, and to raise awareness of related issues through popular education and partnerships with key stakeholders. Using music, dance, two-dimensional art and theatre, U-Tena teaches communities about HIV, STIs, sexual health and reproductive health, among others. 

Our Project // $1500 to Support Financial Literacy and Kuza Mentorships

U-Tena established the Kuza Project in 2011 with the support of GlobeMed at Brown University. Currently they are mentoring 75 girls, 13 -17 years of age, on issues of sexual health practices, mental health, and financial literacy. U-Tena is also partnering with Equity Bank in Nairobi, Kenya to open bank accounts for the 75 girls in the mentorship program. These bank accounts serve both as a lesson in earning and saving and provide them with a tangible way of utilizing their new skills. U-Tena has just built a second youth center in the Mukuru slum that provides supplies so the girls can learn how to make handicrafts. The girls are also learning how to run small businesses, sell their own work, and start putting money in their new savings accounts. This will help them delay or avoid entrance into exploitative lines of work.

We aim to raise $1500 before the end of our trip for the U-Tena and the Kuza Project. The funds will primarily provide the program with books to improve literacy skills, and the establishment of career mentorship within Kuza. It will also support girls with crafting supplies, sanitary pads, and exposure visits to universities with the ultimate goal of increasing financial literacy and academic success. Additional funds will provide sexual health education programming for the girls and for the local community.

Thank you for your support!
+ Read More
We’ve just passed the four-week mark since we’ve arrived here, and it’s time for an update on some of the work we’ve accomplished!

Through our fundraiser, we were able to raise about $1600 for our career project, library project, and other renovations and technology for the Youth Center. We were also able to assess and edit our annual budget, and lower that by about $800, leaving opportunities for more scholarships and support for the girls to attend school, as well as more exposure visits. We have also made contact with some successful businessmen and businesswomen leading exemplary careers in or around Nairobi, and have set up future plans for the girls to visit these role models in their workplaces to receive inspirational guidance. An on-site career day is also in the works.

Here’s a rough idea of what we have decided to devote our fundraising efforts to:

-Books (story books, encyclopedias, dictionaries, motivational books) and bookshelf
-Painting the Youth Center and repairing the walls
-Repairing the cabinets and obtaining locks to secure the contents
-Computer parts (CPUs and mouses)
-Educational Programming for the computers
-Repairs to some of the recreational activities in the center that were otherwise unusable (pool table, ping pong table, etc.)
- A potential kick-start to a program for boys
-We are also working on getting yoga mats donated to the youth center for free.

In addition to working on our budgets and obtaining estimates and value assessments from the different U-tena members, we have also been working on preparing for the graduation of the current class of Kuza girls, and the recruitment of the next class. This has included preparing the Monitoring and Evaluation report, preparing the endline surveys, preparing the baseline surveys, and creating a pamphlet (with the takeaway messages from the endline surveys and the Kuza manuals in general) for the participants to keep as a reminder of the important key points they have learned.

In our free time, we have also been trying to engage in local community efforts, and also participate in some of U-tena’s other projects. This has included doing yoga with Kevin (see Carly’s blog), visiting Wajukuu (a painter’s collective in the slum), going with Vicky to St. Phillips school in a rural area of Kenya to teach dance, visiting the African Yoga Project for a fundraiser for South Sudanesse regufee children to attend school, visiting and volunteering in several local schools and hospitals, and also giving a motivational speech to aspiring runners in Ruben Primary School in the slum (Carly and I do Track and Field at Brown, and Sierra does Frisbee). We have gotten to meet many of the local community members, and see how many of the projects are delicately intertwined.

By the end of this week, we will be done with painting the youth center, purchasing the books, administering the baseline survey for the new group of recruits, repairing the ping pong table, pool table, and bookshelves too. We have also decided that we want to place a big emphasis on “bringing GROW back” to Brown’s GlobeMed Chapter. In other words, we want the members of the club to understand the work U-tena does, the people behind it, and the communities it reaches. We have started doing video interviews with some of the head staff members to put together a video compilation of some of the stories of U-tena members.

Work has been busy! Projects have been snowballing our way, but we are so excited to be getting the chance to do so much while we are here.

P.S. The internet has been a bit too spotty to post the photos from the past few weeks, but updates to the photo blog are soon to come!

-Carly, Sierra, and Ariel
+ Read More
Hello all,

We are happily writing from the U-tena office on the eve of our full second week here. It has taken some time to adjust to the lifestyle and get the ball rolling but we want to share some updates with you.

What we have been doing so far - Monitoring and Evaluation

As some of you may know, part of our internship is to conduct research and evaluation of the programs successes and failures in order to be continually improving. We have been working on a survey to complete a three year research process and a report analyzing the previous years data. The survey measures the intake and retention of the information the KUZA program covers (sexual and reproductive health, financial literacy, general health, empowerment, and rights). We will be administering the survey on the 7th of August, and will analyze the data and complete our report in the following week. Furthermore U-tena is in the process of recruiting a new class of girls for KUZA. We are currently developing a baseline survey to test their knowledge before they enter the program, which will incite a new three year study.

We have also had the pleasure of being involved in various U-tena projects. We attended an open women's sexual health discussion -- led by KUZA mentors -- in which women learned about family planning methods and were free to ask questions and discuss. We spent this Saturday traveling to a rural school where U-tena members Vicky and Shiko teach dance and do exercises with the kids.

Project Update

The U-tena members have been very busy the last few weeks. Between showing us the ropes, managing their projects, and even sending two members to perform a skit at the International AIDS conference in South Africa it has been difficult to get everyone together. Today, however, we had a staff meeting and announced our fundraiser and project plan to the rest of the members.


As we have been exploring Nairobi, we have been doing some market research on books. We have visited several bookstores (both new and thrift) and are very excited with the affordability, and that your donations will go very far. Today in the meeting, we discussed the logistics of purchasing and transporting books, and will be making the first actual trip to purchase the books and implement the library within the coming weeks.

Career Program

We spent much of our first week here orienting ourselves with the KUZA material. The KUZA manual which is used by the mentors to guide the lessons was completed over the last three years by previous teams of interns. We were so impressed to find that the manual contained information on female figures in sports, breaking gender stereotypes and some career information. While much of the focus of KUZA is crafting and financial literacy, the manual does include information on making a resume and general tips on interviewing.

We spoke with the U-tena team today about our goal to create the opportunity for girls to do "career visits," meaning we want to find Kenyan women who work in different sectors (business, journalism, STEM, etc.) and allow the girls to visit these work sites and learn about an array of career options. Multiple members highlighted their love of the crafting as a mechanism for teaching financial literacy, but we want to also put a focus on trying to highlight and ignite their desire to encourage higher education to the girls (this was the inspiration for starting the University visits). They were very excited to get on board with this project and even expressed wanting to connect it with another U-tena program called ALOT Change (Advancing Learning Outcomes for Transformational Change) which provides tutoring, motivational talks, and parental counseling to primary students living in Viwandani and Korogocho slums. ALOT already has funding from the African Population and Health Research Center, which could minimize our costs if the programs are combined.

But wait... Theres more!

We originally delegated one third of our money to books, one third to the career program and one third to KUZA operating costs. However, it seems that our projects may not be as costly as we had estimated. We will be getting big bang for our book and ALOT's funding provides us with a great way to establish career visits for an even greater student population with little cost. We have reviewed and edited the KUZA budget and since many of the maintenance and operating costs can be comfortably covered by GlobeMed at Brown's annual fundraising goal, we are left with even more opportunity to actually further the progress of KUZA while on the ground here.

In our meeting today we discussed our initial desire to ease the tight budget of KUZA, and collectively came to the realization that our fundraiser will allow us to do that and more. We expressed our desire to create a new aspect of the KUZA project that will bring it to a new level for years to come. We also examined the possibility of it being a collaborative project between us an the members that would be sustainable and transformative for the program. The U-tena members were extremely excited and provided us with a wealth of ideas. We have chosen to take the week to develop these ideas into proposals and pick our project next Monday at the staff meeting, when we will promptly update you all!

We are so excited that your generosity has managed to spread to far and excited to elevate this amazing program to a new level.

We will be sharing a budget of the fundraised money and a new project proposal with you all next week! From the bottom of our hearts we would like to thank you all again.

If you want to keep up with our adventures on a more day to day and personal level you can read our blog - 3innairobi.wordpress.com

Also if you have any questions feel free to contact me at carlyannpaul@gmail.com

Carly, Ariel and Sierra
+ Read More
Thank you so much to all of you guys for helping us reach our goal! We are so grateful for all the support. Please check out https://3innairobi.wordpress.com/ for some photos and updates from our trip :)
+ Read More
Read a Previous Update
Be the first to leave a comment on this campaign.

$1,770 of $1,500 goal

Raised by 42 people in 32 months
Created June 23, 2016
Carly Paul
on behalf of Ariel Silverman
Your share could be bringing in donations. Sign in to track your impact.
We will never post without your permission.
In the future, we'll let you know if your sharing brings in any donations.
We weren't able to connect your Facebook account. Please try again later.
Wendy Abbott
31 months ago

Way to go Carly! Best of luck to you and your mates.

31 months ago
Dan Silverman
31 months ago

To cover crafting supplies for each of the 75 girls in your program... best wishes to Ariel, Carly, Sierra and all your mentees!

Gab Melli
31 months ago

luh yoo boo

Be the first to leave a comment on this campaign.
Use My Email Address
By continuing, you agree with the GoFundMe
terms and privacy policy
There's an issue with this Campaign Organizer's account. Our team has contacted them with the solution! Please ask them to sign in to GoFundMe and check their account. Return to Campaign

Are you ready for the next step?
Even a $5 donation can help!
Donate Now Not now
Connect on Facebook to keep track of how many donations your share brings.
We will never post on Facebook without your permission.