Kenyans Learn Sustainable Business
Ndungu John Mwangi, director of Umoja East Africa Fund-Kenya, trains grassroots groups on how to plan and operate sustainable businesses. While Kenya has enjoyed success in the capital city of Nairobi, those living in the rural areas are still struggling. They will succeed when the rural economy is infused with locally-owned social enterprises, which can range from sustainable agriculture to solar lamps to clean water access. The opportunities are endless and are especially timely for women as they learn leadership and business skills to plan and manage their own local business enterprises.
John’s story illustrates how this principle works. Born in Kibera, the largest slum in Africa, John was determined to stop the generational cycle of poverty in his family. He went to the local dump and taught himself how to make compost from garbage and then sold the compost at a profit to local farmers. John began training others how to do this and soon expanded into a an NGO that specializes in training grassroots groups how to develop and manage locally-run sustainable businesses.
The organization he founded, Umoja East Africa Fund-Kenya, focuses on this need with a mission to shape civil society in Kenya by sharing business skills, technology and resources while respecting the self-determined needs, culture and environment of the local population.
Africa does not need charity or foreign aid. Instead they need investments in small locally owned businesses and social enterprises that will help feed and grow local economies. Sustainability managed by locals. That’s important.