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The work of Maisha Trust actually began several years before the Trust was founded.  In 2006, Sarah started a kindergarten school in Kibera slum in partnership with two local teachers.  The initiative was born out of their concern about the lack of affordable pre-primary schools in the slum and the recognition that, because of this, children in Kibera began life disadvantaged, setting precedence for their future prospects too. 

After helping to establish the school on the ground, Sarah went back to England and registered a UK charity to raise funds to support the project.  The charity was named ‘Sarah Junior School’ after her, since it was acknowledged that it was all quite an accomplishment for a 19 year old. 

The kindergarten school continued to operate under the loving care of the two teachers and supervision of Victor, a loyal Kenyan friend.  Within a few months the school had 60 pupils, aged 3-6 years, all of which were identified as living in extreme poverty.  School fees were set at just Ksh100 (80p), which includes lunch, since the central objective of ‘Sarah Junior School’ is to eradicate barriers to education.

Then, in 2010, Sarah moved to Kenya and saw the need to improve various aspects of the project, so that it could be even more impactful.  She started by upgrading the registration from a Community-Based Organisation (CBO) to a Charitable Trust – Maisha Trust.  Subsequently, with the help of Tom, her husband, and Victor, a plot of land was purchased in Kibera.  Since the school was then operating from a rented church hall, owning land gave the Trust the opportunity of constructing its own school building and providing the children with adequate facilities, such as running water, electricity and a safe space to play in (none of which existed on the former site).

The trustees’ vision of creating a place of ‘life’ resulted in the school being re-named as Oasis Kindergarten.  It is still in the construction phase, but by God’s grace it will be complete and ready to open at the beginning of 2013.

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