In the slums, unemployment levels are estimated at over 50% and many families live on as little as a few British Pounds a week. In addition, levels of health and education are low.
Handouts provide relief but not a long term solution. At Porridge and Rice, we believe that the long term solution to breaking the cycle of poverty and deprivation is education.
A good education provides children with the tools to build a better future for themselves and their communities. It enables children to become adults that can direct and shape their own lives rather than being trapped in poverty and dependent on charity.
Porridge and Rice partners with schools committed to providing their pupils with a good education. Porridge and Rice does not seek to take over and run schools but rather to partner with schools with committed, strong leadership to remove barriers to education like hunger and sickness, and provide resources needed to deliver education like chalk, desks and classrooms.
Porridge and Rice partners with schools that serve children from the Nairobi slums. They are not government funded schools, in fact, they are often referred to as informal schools because they are registered as self-help groups as opposed to Department of Education schools. They are run by dedicated individuals reaching out to those that would otherwise not receive an education. They obtain their funding by charging school fees.
The problem is that many parents struggle to pay the school fees with some failing completely or taking a long time. The result is that these schools never know from month to month how much money they will have and whether they can meet basic commitments such as teachers' salaries and rent.
The individuals that run the schools themselves often struggle to meet their own personal expenses as the schools do not consistently generate enough income to pay the teachers let alone the head and deputy head.
The broad aim of Porridge and Rice is to enable each of these schools to provide a quality education to each of its pupils, as already stated, by removing barriers to education and also by providing resources that facilitate education as explained in detail by Our Mission and Our Values.
The work of Porridge and Rice is organised into five programmes which are designed to reflect Our Vision, Our Mission, and Our Values. Each programme is based on careful research and our experience in Kenya to date.
The five Porridge and Rice programmes are -