Journey to WE College
For young people in rural Narok County, Kenya, pursuing post-secondary education
once meant migrating to urban centres, an expensive and daunting prospect.
With the founding of WE College in 2017, these youth now have the opportunity to pursue their professional goals while remaining close to home.
WE Charity’s work in Kenya began over 20 years ago, when we first connected with indigenous groups whose customary ways of life were threatened by development and drought, and whose access to basic rights and resources was limited.
In 2002, a Kenyan government mandate made primary education compulsory and free across the country, but this sudden change left schools no time to prepare for the overwhelming influx of new students—a problem that still persists.
To accommodate the growing numbers, WE Charity connected with the region’s elders and officials to refurbish and build additional schools in the area. While WE Charity constructed the school rooms, the government was responsible for operating costs, teachers’ salaries and curriculum oversight.
The next step in WE Charity’s education approach in Kenya was the opening of a group of high schools in 2011. The first high school became the region’s top-performing institution, preparing students to plan for their future careers. But the majority of colleges and universities in Kenya were located in big cities, and families were hesitant to send their children away from home.
With a groundswell of support from funders all over the globe, WE Charity established WE College in 2017, giving youth a chance to train for jobs that would energize their local economies and meet the region’s evolving needs. WE College currently offers diplomas and certificates in: Tourism Management, Nursing, Clinical Medicine, Mechanics and Agriculture. Each program includes customized leadership courses, IT integration and an internship placement, a competitive advantage in the local job market. As it evolves in future years, the college will also offer courses in Business, IT, Medicine, Education, Technical Studies and Civil Engineering.