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Africans empowering. entertaining. educating. inspiring.


02 JAN




in this issue Fashionista

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Cover Model Ajok Kuol Manyang







7 9 10 12 16 Read





17 18 20 22 23 Money





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Our team Christine Oduor EDITOR

Is a freelance translator, writer who has published no books (yet!) and blogger.She holds advanced degrees in French and Journalism.When not at work, she enjoys singing and is currently learning the guitar. Resides in Tunis, Tunisia.

Kawira Njeru

She is an active member of Action for Natural Medicine (ANAMED), which helps to promote the use of natural medicine to help those in the Tropics and Patron to Christian concern for health and nutrition, a self –help group in her home village. She recently published Coming Home, a book of poetry and short stories touching on social, political and environmental issues. For more on this kindly visit: Resides in Germany.

Joyce Mugun

As a young shy girl, she took up writing as a way to express herself. She says that, “whenever I wanted to ask my dad for something, I would write him letters. I would write the letter and leave it by dad’s breakfast or lunch plate, and everything was delivered to me the next day”. Author of What a Kenyan felt. Resides in USA

Florence Chirchir

Other than teaching, I am interested in personal growth and development. I am largely involved in career guidance besides writing. I teach French and Swahili and also hold training in Human Resource Management. Resides in Kenya

Damaris Rotich

I am a nurse by profession and a peotry writer. Poety for me comes natural and inspired by many things around me. Resides in USA

Stella Birgen

I am a nurse by profession who enjoys do it yourself projects. I love to watch movies and read books.Looking forward to working with a magazine that aims to inspires other Africans. Resides n USA

Eunice Kimunai

RN, MPH, PhD (candidate)I have been lucky to attend a lot of health conferences and also travel the world.I want to use my knowledge to educate and help others. Resides in USA

Ed’s note

Editor’s Note,

Between the ages of 9 and 13 years I came to the firm conclusion that I was an adopted child, at least as far as my mother was concerned. I had, in wisdom no doubt, reflected very deeply on the way she handled my requests for favors, her insistence that I finish my homework on time and eat up every bit of vegetables that she put on my plate. A biological mother would not do such things to her own flesh and blood. Only an adopted child merited this kind of treatment; at least that was the narrative acceptable to my young and very impressionable mind then. For the longest time adults who chose to adopt children were right next to the evil stepmother at the negative end of the good-evil spectrum and were to be viewed with suspicion because they were not “normal” people. Why would anyone want to raise a child who is not biologically related to them? I have come to learn later that none of the beliefs I had held any water. I do share 50% of my mother’s DNA, and adults who choose to adopt children are perfectly normal. They love their adopted children just as much as the biological parents do, as we see in this issue. We will walk a day in the footsteps of Tammi and Patrick who run Upinde, an orphanage in Kenya and give a family to abandoned children facilitating their adoption. We will also read about Cornerstone of Hope orphanage in Nigeria. Happy reading.


Sammy Mwirotsi

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Jim Njoroge

Design and layout

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Works clothes don’t have to look dull on us

Dress: Calvin Klein, Shirt: Banana Republic, Shoes: Christian Louboutin, Bag: Fendi, Belt: Anne Klein



yourself Investing in Florence chirchir


e all desire peace of mind in this chaotic world. However, it often eludes us because the ability to cram as many activities as possible into our days is vigorously applauded. Venturing into entrepreneurship, beginning a side hustle while still in full-time employment is in vogue. Some venture into entrepreneurship, beginning a side hustle learn a new skill, college, others go back to work or college schoolafter a break, start a family, fix struggling marriages‌ talk of burn out. After a while, we find ourselves still unfulfilled and cannot figure out why. As long as we are okay, we simply keep going. Everything in our lives is constantly screaming for attention. We hardly finish straightening the edge than the middle falls off. We hang onto unsatisfying jobs and businesses, given that life is difficult and opportunities hard to come by. Bills have to be paid and needs met. We are

crammed up to the core and at the same time desire a quality life. The good news is we can still strike a balance with these simple steps.

Step one: Get organized

Hard work and dedication without the right strategies could lead from one frustrating failure to another. Letting go of whatever it is that is holding you back will give you some sense of direction. If there are several of issues, tackle one at a time. Delegate others and if you can afford to, pay someone else to help out with some tasks. You are not the CEO of the universe and life will still go on without you being involved in everything. Wisdom calls for one to take up only as much as they can efficiently handle. Rid yourself of anything that robs you of your happiness and is a source of additional stress then incorporate that which is fulfilling to you. Balance in your life is not a concept way out of RIZIKI JANUARY 2013 5

Self your reach; it can be attained.

Step two: Act

What is that one thing in your life that you can easily change right away if you could? Do it. Stop putting it off until some other time when you will be ready. What is holding you back? Is it fear of failure or fear of conflict, emotional baggage or even low self-esteem? Worry, undesirable habits and stress can be an impediment to any meaningful progress. Where does one start from? The one size fits all does not apply since we are all unique individuals. Focus on what you are passionate about and seek to develop it. If your financial situation is in chaos, do something about it. If you are high on debt, desist from piling on more. Deal with what you already have. If money is not sufficient, find ways of ethically supplementing your income or cutting back on some things. Figure out the kind of life you would like to live, assess your means then see what compromises or sacrifices you need to make.

Step three: Be focused

Take charge of your time and life. After you’ve made the first steps, keep going. There will be instances when you will be the player, referee, defender and own cheerleader in the game. Keep your focus and let your positive progress motivate you. Concentrate on what needs to be done at a time. Just pick one area of your life at a time and sort it out as best as you can before taking on another area. Certain areas come with spillovers, for instance a solid spiritual base will permeate all other areas of your life in a positive way. Good mental and emotional health will reflect in your physical body as well as social life. Start from somewhere as you progress to other areas. You can slowly introduce other desired changes as you go along.

Pray for a mind to do it right as well as strength and grace for the journey. 6 RIZIKI JANUARY 2013

Step four: Set targets

Set your goals and work at achieving them within a certain time frame. Pursuing studies and working at the same time? You can make getting up a bit earlier to do some reading before going to work part of your routine unless you are more of an evening person. Maybe you are a very busy parent desiring to have more time with your family. You can try involving them in your activities as you catch up. For instance, you can cook and do household chores together or have them walk you to the bus stage among others. Better still increase your productivity at work by limiting time spent on other non-work related things and dedicate your full attention to your work at the stipulated time frame so that you do not carry it home. Establish clear and realistic boundaries. Let family time be family time. If you desire quality relationships, work at being a reliable and dependable person yourself. Sow the seed of friendship in others first before expecting the same out of them. What is your desired outcome and how important is it to you? What are you getting out of your present state of affairs? What good or harm is it doing to you? Do you want to continue this way or you would rather have a different approach? Are you willing to do something about it or you are waiting for someone else or more favorable conditions? Own the process. Quit the excuses club and do the same for the dependency suite. Your own effort and initiative is more gratifying than a silver plate serving. It won’t be easy breaking from past ways and habits we are so used to but it can be done. Pray for a mind to do it right as well as strength and grace for the journey. Regularly assess your situation, and whenever things are not working, re-strategize. This entails lots of decision making. Think through and make decisions you can live with, do not waste so much time trying to over analyze everything. Seek advice, take what you need and leave the rest. A value system serves as a good compass. It will always keep you in check whenever you go against it. Recognize the fact that you are dealing with yourself, and do not force change on others. Everyone guards the door of change to their hearts. Celebrate any achievements along the way. It may not be what had planned for but they are accomplishments all the same. When you make mistakes, repent and move past your disappointments and failures.


kaskazi guest house We spotted a little gem in Mombasa Kenya: Kaskazi Guest House, Your very private beach holiday resort... away from the “tourist track� What we like about this place is just not the beauty and privacy but what the owners of Kaskazi do for the community. They believe that it is their obligation to contribute to the villages in their immediate proximity. The work with many to improve schools, hospitals and lives of those in the community.




kaskazi guest house



Meatball Kabobos (Uganda) From: simbolei cook book. The ingredient list is long, but this is not a difficult recipe. 1 cup plain yogurt 1 hot red chile, chopped 3 tbsp. chopped parsley 3 slices whole wheat bread 3 eggs, beaten 1 tbsp. Worcestershire sauce 1 ¼ cups dried breadcrumbs 3 garlic gloves, minced 3 tbsp. minced ginger ½ tsp. ground cumin ½ tsp. crushed coriander seeds 4 tbsp. chopped fresh parsley 1 hot chile, deseeded and chopped 2 pounds ground beef Oil for fying

Directions:Mix yogurt, 1 Chile and parsley in a bowl. Soak bread in a small bowl of water for three minutes. Remove and squeeze in your hands to remove excess water. Crumble bread into another large bowl add eggs and Worcestershire sauce. Mix in breadcrumbs, garlic, ginger, cumin, coriander, parsley and second chile. Add beef and mix all together with hands. Roll into walnut size balls and place in refrigerator to chill. Heat one tablespoon of oil in wok or skillet and heat until almost smoking. Cook meatballs in oil a few at a time unlit brown and crispy. Remove from oil with a slotted spoon and drain on a paper towel. Insert a toothpick in each kabob and serve with the yogurt mixture as dip. To buy the cookbook: email, 100% of the price of the book goes directly to SCAA educational programs!





Eradicating HIV/AIDS

in Sub-Sahara Africa By Eunice Kimunai, RN, MPH, PhD (candidate)


Health ore than 95% of HIV-positive people are in developing nations, with the vast majority living in Sub-Sahara Africa. The epidemic continues to consume resources and requires international efforts to prevent the spread of the virus. However, these efforts, especially the availability of antiretroviral therapy, remain inaccessible to a majority of the population - just 42% of people who need treatment are receiving it. Several achievements towards eradicating HIV/AIDS have

What is Africa doing to ensure that they are able to sustain HIV/AIDS programs if international funding is ceased? been reported in sub-Sahara Africa; but challenges in this area remain asmanifested in the statistics reported in this region. Though progress has been made in making antiretroviral treatment available, it is clear that achieving universal access is still out of reach. This does not necessarily mean 100% coverage of all services but rather a desire to move to a higher level of access for equitable, affordable, comprehensive, accessible, and effective interventions in the longterm. Constraints to achieving this target include insufficient financial

resources,exacerbated by the economic hardships in developed nations, such as the United States, who are the primary funders of HIV/AIDS programs in SubSaharan Africa. It is estimated that about $25 billion is needed to achieve all targets including prevention, care for orphans and vulnerable children, and other program support costs. Treatment programs in Sub-Saharan Africa are experiencing the worst of the financial crisis. Indirect impacts of the financial crisis include increased poverty levels, which leads to more risky behaviors such as trading sex for money. Adequate nutrition, which is important for people on antiretroviral therapy, could also decline leading to treatment ineffectiveness. Community mobilization is needed in order to achieve positive benefits. There ought to be greater commitment towards health activism that tackles broader political and economic constraints to human and health systems development in Africa, as well as toward the resuscitation of inclusive and equitable public health systems. The momentum around the expansion of antiretroviral therapy should rather be used to build strong,integrated and effective public health systems, in particular, the human resource capacity of public health systems. Current pitfalls that may occur with the push to rapidly expand access to antiretroviral therapy in sub-Sahara Africa are undesirable opportunity costs, the fragmentation of health systems, worsening health care inequities, and

poor and unsustained treatment outcomes. Interventions proposed will require the international organizations and/ or non-governmental organizations to review how they position themselves against the national health systems, and promote efforts to build the capacity of health systems for the delivery of comprehensive primary health care, and not just selected treatment. This will allow the treatment agenda and the health systems development agenda to exist in a virtuous cycle of mutual development rather than in a vicious cycle that undermines both. African nations will also need to do their part, mainly by mitigating the effects of outflows of skilled health personnel from Africa to wealthier countries, possibly through some form of recompense. In conclusion, efforts to eradicating HIV/AIDS in sub-Sahara Africa will require a balance between tackling the broader political and economic causes of poverty and impoverished health system and, ensuring that the health systems are capable of providing comprehensive health care effectively, efficiently and equitably. The questions that remain unanswered are, will the developed nations continue funding for HIV/ AIDS programs in Sub-Saharan Africa? For how much longer? What is Africa doing to ensure that they are able to sustain HIV/AIDS programs if international funding is ceased?

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The best way to predict the fut

Innovating and inventing

the future of Africa By Yena Balekyani & Nancy Mwirotsi Could our own innovations save Africa? Forbes 20 Young Power Women in Africa 2012 Being named one of the top 100 women in technology by guardian-uk and one of the top 10 women to follow on twitter- CNN presents the 10 African technology voices to follow on Twitter: And one of the top global black women of power to watch: julianarotich/

Co-founder Ushahidi Juliana Rotich

PHOTO:FLICKR/ars electronica


Juliana Rotich

I am always excited to hear of Africans doing things that challenge me, as Juliana does. We grew up in the same town and I started this interview with the aim of showing readers how an ordinary girl from Kenya can achieve something great. Yena is one of our writers who is still in highschool and I hope that with her voice she can reach a younger audience and tell them what she learned. Maya Angelou once said “I love to see a young girl go out and grab the world by the lapels. Life’s a bitch. You’ve got to go out and kick ass.” I feel the same and this story is personal. We talked to Juliana about who she is, growing up and going to school in Africa, then to college in the America, her influences, what Ushahidi is, and how it came about. I grew up in a small town Kapsabet, Kenya; home to some of the famous runners. I attended a very modest all girls’ boarding school Primary (elementary) school. Like most Catholic schools it was very strict, but I learned very early to be independent and to do things for myself. I attended Kabarak High School, also a boarding school and among one of the best schools in Kenya. We were lucky to have a lot of resources like a well-equipped computer lab and library. That is where I started teaching myself how to use a computer. I spent most of my time away from class either in the library or the lab, at times right after lunch break before afternoon classes resumed.

Expectations and decisions

In my family, as in most families at that time, it


ture is to invent it” —Alan Kay. was expected that if you did relatively well in school, you would become a doctor. My parents tried to steer me towards the medical field, but I knew that was not for me after seeing someone with an open wound so I switched to pharmacy. While exploring my options in pharmacy, I took a CAD class and I was hooked. Around this time, my dad passed away and after coming back from his funeral, I knew I had no choice but to work hard. He influenced me a lot and some of the best memories I have of him are the times spent working in his workshop when I was young. While still at school, I started working for Sprint Telecom at night. That is where I got exposed to high speed internet and actively started blogging for


Ushahidi means testimony in Swahili. In 2007, I attended TED global in Tanzania and that is where I met Erik Hersman, Ory Okolloh and David Kobia who are co-founders of Ushahidi. The website was originally used to map incidents of violence and peace efforts throughout the country based on reports submitted via the web and mobile phones in Kenya after the post-election fallout at the beginning

of 2008. The site idea was initially proposed by Ory and within four days had the map up. Then, we were using Google maps. My role at the time, as I was up country, was to report what I could see e.g. if the airport was open, what ATM was working, very basic information. Since then, the name “Ushahidi” has come to represent the people behind the “Ushahidi Platform” and our platform has been used by others around the world most notably during the 2010 Haiti and Chile earthquakes. We believe that ordinary people have a voice, and interesting things happen when you aggregate those voices and visualize the results.

“We must keep showing that there are options, so that we can keep showing what life has in store for us.”- Juliana Rotich

Yena asked Juliana to give us her opinion on matters that affect the current generation of African Youth. In particular why many parents tend to push their kids to chase dreams they do not have interest in. Our parents do what they do without the meaning to push us against our will, but we must understand

their underlying motivation is for us to succeed. This is a very special continent with many opportunities for excellence. For all the young people out there, have the courage to tell your parents what kinds of dreams you want to chase so they may help you excel and succeed. Many young girls and boys of African heritage tend to set aside opportunities in life and often get married or marry at a very young age. Some do not even complete High School before they get into marriage. The question is why? If the question was to be put to the youth concerned, their answer would be “Why not?” Juliana took a different approach. “It all comes down to aspiration. What do they have to look up to, to hope for? I believe that’s for the individual to answer.” According to Juliana when you’re 16, 17, you’re still learning about yourself. There are trailblazers behind us. We must keep showing that there are options, so that we can show what life has in store for us. We need to have goals and hopes of reaching them. These are the words of one of the smartest African innovators. Should we heed them, or discard them just as we have discarded all of the other great and wise women and men in our lives?

“Success is not always a personal thing; it’s much more of a network and finding what you really want to be.”- Juliana Rotich 2012




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Latest trend

Water Colors at New York Fashion week 2013 Spring/Summer by Nancy Mwirotsi

carolina herrera

Naeem Khan

marissa webb


zac posen

coming home


By Kawira Njeru

You have been driven away,so far away that you lost direction. But the little and fragile spirit in thee is strong and willing to move on. The way is not clear and smooth,but you have some fighting within you. You may not know it now,but someday you will arise. Honest, challenging, compelling, motivational, triumphant, this book of poetry and short stories finds strength in faith as her life’s work pursues aides for others. Coming Home reveals all that we can accomplish in the name of good for our neighbours around the world. ‘An insightful book that conveys the spirit of Africa past, and the tragedy of what today is being lost in the headlong rush to be modern…a rare glimpse into the pain and struggles of many people in Africa today, but it is also a book of hope, of life and vitality.’ - Keith Lindsey, PhD ANAMED International



Tabu Ley





abu Ley is a renowned Congolese singer and band leader. His artistic name appears in several forms: Tabu Ley, Rochereau, Signeur Rochereau, and Tabu Ley Rochereau. They are all the same person. He began his career as a singer at age 14 in Joseph Kabasela’s legendary Africa Jazz orchestra. He subsequently left that orchestra and was one of the two largest figures (along with Franco et TPOK Jazz) of the Congo/Zaire soukous rumba scene of the late 60’s through 1980s. During the mid-90’s he and his Afrisa Internationale orchestra were living in exile in the USA. A handful of the Afrisa band members - Modero Mekanisi, Wawali Bonane, Dodo Munoko and Huit-Kilos Nseka (currently part ofRicardo Lemvo’s Makina Loca ensemble) are still in the US. Tabu Ley returned to Kinshasha in the late 1990s after the dictator Mobutu Sese Seko fell from power. He has been performing in Africa and Europe from time to time as well as serving a position as Cultural Governor for the government back home in Congo.

Discography: Tabu Ley’s recordings have been reissued on CD by various labels, primarily Syllart and Sterns. Omona Wapi (Shanachie, 1991) Volume 1: Ekeseni 1977/78/79/80 (P.A.V. PAV100010 , 2006) Volume 2: Papa Do! 1980/1984 (P.A.V. PAV100011 , 2006) with Afrisa Int.: Sorozo 1977/1978 (Syllart 823435 , 2006) Le Seigneur Rochereau (Syllart 823418 , 2006) with Afrisa Int: A L’olympia 1970 (Syllart 823419 , 2006) Sacramento Avec Canta Nyboma (Syllart 823424 , 2006) with Afrisa International 1971/1977 (Syllart 823420 , 2006) African Fiesta National: 1964-66 (Syllart 823426 , 2006) with Afrisa Int.: Kaful Mayay 1973-75 (Syllart 823427 , 2006) African Fiesta National: 1966/69 (Syllart 823430 , 2006) African Fiesta: 1968/69 (Syllart 823431 , 2006) 1971/1972/1973 (Syllart 823433 , 2006) Tete Nakozonga: 1972-1973 (Syllart, 2006) Classic Titles Cantos/(Syllart79001002010/18/, 2006) The Voice Of Lightness 1961-1977, 2CD (Sterns Africa STCD3027-28, 2007) Maloba Ya Kulutu 68/69/70 (P.A.V. PAV100009 11/7/2007 L’integral De L’olympia (Syllart 823448, 2007) Jolie Elie (Syllart 1/21/2008) Les Annees 70 (Syllart 8234321, 2008) Muzina (Rounder ROUNDERCD5059, 2009) Africa Worldwide: 35th Anniversary Album (Rounder, 2009) The Voice Of Lightness Vol. 2 (Sterns Music STCD3056-57, 2010) DVDs Tempelo Deux Rives Prod DVD, 2005 RIZIKI JANUARY 2013 19





OurHistory Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela

celebrating 94 years He was born on July 18, 1918 in Transkei, South Africa. Mandela was a militant anti-apartheid activist, and the leader and co-founder of Umkhonto we Sizwe, the armed wing of the African National Congress (ANC). In 1962 he was arrested and convicted of sabotage and other charges, and sentenced to life imprisonment. Mandela went on to serve 27 years in prison, spending many of these years on Robben Island. Following his release from prison on 11 February 1990, Mandela led his party in the negotiations that led to the establishment of democracy in 1994. As President, he frequently gave priority to reconciliation, while introducing policies aimed at combating poverty and inequality in South Africa. Upon his release from prison, he served as President of South Africa from 1994 to 199. The first ever to be elected in a fully representative democratic election. Bio ref: Wikipedia.

Quotes by Mandela: I dream of an Africa which is in peace with itself. I dream of the realization of the unity of Africa, whereby its leaders combine in their efforts to solve the problems of this continent. I dream of our vast deserts, of our forests, of all our great wildernesses. “I learned that courage was not the absence of fear, but the triumph over it. The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid, but he who conquers that fear.” “I am fundamentally an optimist. Whether that comes from nature or nurture, I cannot say. Part of being optimistic is keeping one’s head pointed toward the sun, one’s feet moving forward. There were many dark moments when my faith in humanity was sorely tested, but I would not and could not give myself up to despair. That way lays defeat and death.” “I have walked that long road to freedom. I have tried not to falter; I have made missteps along the way. But I have discovered the secret that after climbing a great hill, one only finds that there are many more hills to climb. I have taken a moment here to rest, to steal a view of the glorious vista that surrounds me, to look back on the distance I have come. But I can only rest for a moment, for with freedom come responsibilities, and I dare not linger, for my long walk is not ended.”


Art So I got bored sometime last December, and then came across French photographer Beatrices’ Barbie and Kens’ wedding shoot, and with some inspiration from the black Barbie shoot on Italian Vogue, I decided to create a Nigerian Traditional wedding shoot with black Barbie and Ken … it started up as a pretty simple shoot that would have taken about a week or so, and ended up taking up to 5 months. I had to enlist my wife to help out with the outfits, as well as with searching the internet for all the little accessories”. Obi. Obi Nwokedi, and I’m a London based photographer.





furniture leather

Before you buy, get educated on the type of leather

Grade of leather

Full Grain or Full Top Grain: is 100% natural grain, and will also be the most expensive. Top Grain: is altered lightly with light sanding from “Full Top Grain” and is barely noticeable. Corrected & Embossed Grain: has been thoroughly sanded, and then embossed with a natural looking uniform grain pattern. Split and Embossed Grain: is the second layer of hide, split from a full grain hide. It’s heavily pigmented (painted if you will) and the embossed grain pattern is less natural looking.

Ok now you have the facts, here are the numbers: • • • •

Only 5% of leathers worldwide can qualify as Full Grain. 10% made it to Full Top Grain. 18% are suitable for Corrected / Embossed. The remaining 67% of hides are not used in the leather upholstery business and become shoes, handbags, belts, clothing, and automotive leathers.


CPS! SHAKE COLLECTION BY PixelModa color explosion—affordable luxury for every mood. made in italy • 5 atm water resistance • unisex • two year warranty



10 Steps to

financial Health



Pay off debts as quickly as possible. Interest rates charged on loans can mount up very quickly. Always pay the debt earning the highest interest first.

Q. Are there any basic rules that will keep me out of financial trouble? A. The following guidelines, if followed, will give you a head start on the road to financial health.

Work out a budget and stick to it, which means spending less than you earn. A budget is a detailed record of your total income and expenditure. So many people say, ‘I don’t know where my money goes.’ This will not happen if you budget correctly; your purse may still be empty, but at least you will know exactly where the money went! Budgeting is a chore for everyone, but no matter how boring you find it, it is an essential first step in managing your finances. Get organized. Start a file for financial matters and keep your accounts in order. Always save a regular amount of your income – make that a priority. As the old saying goes, ‘Look after the pennies and the pounds will look after themselves.’ Small amounts will build

up over time into substantial sums. Build an emergency fund in case of the unexpected crisis, and a ‘fun’ fund – everyone needs an occasional splurge on a night out or new outfit. If you are starting your working life, consider making your own contributions to superannuation; if you are an older worker, consider increasing your contribution. Have financial goals. Having something to save for, e.g. a holiday, a car, your own home, will inspire you to persevere with your budget when the going gets tough. Pay off debts as quickly as possible. Interest rates charged on loans can mount up very quickly. Always pay the debt earning the highest interest first. Avoid impulse spending. Don’t buy what you don’t really need. Before buying an item, ask yourself how many hours you would have to work to pay for it. For example, if you earn $15 an hour, you would have to work ten hours to pay for a $150 bottle of perfume. Be careful with credit cards. Credit cards can be a recipe for disaster, tempting you to buy things you cannot

afford. Credit cards are not free, and the interest rates are high. Unless you are certain that you can pay your bill in full each month, the safest option is to do some ‘plastic surgery’ and cut up your credit card/s. Never sign a contract or agreement unless you have read it thoroughly and completely understand its terms and conditions. Avoid activities or substances that may become addictive, i.e. gambling, drugs, alcohol or cigarettes. These can very easily lead to financial ruin, not only for you but also for your family. Put your money to work. It’s not much good saving your money if it is just sitting around in a basic oncall bank account earning a minute amount of interest. Shop around for the investment that best suits your needs, taking into account such things as fees, interest rate and accessibility.

* These steps are discussed in more detail in Money Management for Women by Sheila Freeman and Helene Richards. Download your FREE chapter, “Breaking Up”. RIZIKI JANUARY 2013 27



Chosen child My borning cry you never heard, My feeble tiny hands you never caressed. Instead my cries filled your dreams, My hugs engulfed your unfulfilled desires. While angels sang and some lost their wings, Your arms remained empty but for the longing. You waited forever it seemed, You loved me before you met me. The long hours of relentless labor, You ached and hoped and prayed. The long nights of child’s unending colic, You cried yourself to childless sleep. Then you found me; You had loved me from your dreams… Your Chosen Child.

Damaris Rotich




An Important

mission By Joyce Mugun

ur current project is the planning, construction and development of an innovative, non-profit, self-supporting high school for 320 girls in Rift Valley Province, Kenya. Simbolei Girls’ Preparatory Academy will be located near Iten, at the edge of the Great Rift Valley. In addition to a rigorous academic curriculum, our school will provide community literacy programs, a community library, and community development activities to foster leadership and community activism within our student body. Simbolei Community Assistance Association (SCAA) is a charitable 501 (c)(3) organization, originally organized by Richard and Andrea Kaitany, supporting the education and empowerment of young women and their families in Rift Valley Province, Kenya (more on simbolei academy on our website)











AfricanAffairs “African children have the worst life chances in the world,” noted former Organization of African Unity Secretary-General Salim Ahmed Salim at the Pan-African Forum for Children in May 2001. “And the gap between the survival rates, the education and the development of Africa’s children and the children of other continents is increasing.” U.N. Special Rapporteur, Najat M’jid Maalla, asserts that, “It is known that there have been cases of children sold by their parents, children abducted and later trafficked or even placed for adoption because they are wrongly considered as orphans; but due to the illegal nature of the acts, it has been difficult to properly document them.” Related Story (from •Africa adoption abroad should be discouraged “at all costs,’” says African Child Policy Forum.While we agree that changes should be made to the adoption process to avoid putting children at risk, stopping adoptions completely is neither helpful nor practical. We feel that these orphanages, homes and children need our help, support and if we can, adopt some of these children.

whether it is by adoption, reuniting them with their family or by just loving them ourselves. We support these babies because they are some the most innocent, fragile, tiny humans in this world and they need help.

Without the orphanage I would……. Be lost!

Working with the children makes me feel……

Yesterday one of our staff picked up Jay (our 2 year old) and said “walk to Mum” and for the first time, he did! He took his first steps and loved walking back and forth between Patrick and me. Today, I walked in and said “hi” and for the first time, Naomi turned around and said “hi” back…she has never said that before! Working day in, day out with them is exhausting but very rewarding.

Riziki Magazine had a chance to talk Challenges you face….. to Tammi and Patrick from Upinde, an We face many challenges from health problems to lack of finances, babies with developmental orphanage in Kenya. About Upinde

we are in need of financial support. Donations and fundraising are some of the best ways to help.

Tammi started Upinde orphanage after volunteering in Kenyan hospitals, watching countless babies sleep alone, abandoned and afraid. Some of them died while waiting for an orphanage to take them in. Many orphanages in Kenya do not take infants who are sick as it is more costly to take care of them and their death rate is higher. Tammi’s husband Patrick shares in her passion and helps run the home with a focus on love to heal the many wounds of their short past. The children in the home know them as mum and dad. Tammi and Patrick’s focus is to make Upinde family for all the children who cannot be adopted. They have a mum and dad in Tammi and Patrick, their aunts and uncles are the staff and the other children; their siblings. That is what needs to be supported and nurtured. At Upinde, to be considered for admission, a baby has to be under two years of age – to save the most vulnerable babies from uncertain death. Upinde has been successful at keeping 14 babies, have lost 2, 2 have been returned to their families and 2 have been moved to an older children’s home. The home currently houses 10 beautiful babies. The home’s capacity is 25 infants at any one time, though they would find it very hard to turn down a baby for admission. During my correspondence with Tammi, I got to ask her several questions about her vision and challenges

I support these children because……

These babies have no-one. Some, like Shamas, come to us cold, dirty and without clothes, most come hungry, and all come scared. Patrick and I aim to show these babies that life can be better. We want to give them a family,

delays, disabilities and family issues as we take in babies from all backgrounds. We accept babies with HIV, disabilities and deformities. Most of the babies have come to us malnourished, two have life threatening food allergies, but thankfully, right now, all are healthy so life is a little easier in that respect. We have however just lost a little one, Mercy, who had hydrocephalus and on Christmas day last year, we lost Lee to meningitis. In all honesty, the most challenging part of this job is when you reach a point when you know a baby cannot survive no matter how much you try…it is simply too late for them. A HUGE challenge we face is making sure that every month we can pay our bills and feed those beautiful babies every month!

What kind of help you seek to offer these children?

With the cost of living rising in Mombasa, and many parts of Kenya, we are in need of financial support. Donations and fundraising are some of the best ways to help. We also accept volunteers, who we believe play an important role in supporting these children. We have sponsors for each baby, not only to help cover each baby’s monthly cost of living but to provide each baby with a connection to another human being who loves and cares about them. While adoption centers hope that all the children get accepted into loving families, we have exceptions like Eva who was abandoned by her mother in a dumpsite and later rescued and taken to Upinde. She is expected to stay in an orphanage as her mother was imprisoned for 10 years for attempting to kill her.

Website: index.html RIZIKI JANUARY 2013 33




Cornerstone of Hope orphanage: Riziki Magazine also had a chance to talk to Eric Idehen, the president of Cornerstone of Hope in Nigeria and Sierra Leone and asked him about his vision and challenges. Have you been rejected more than once? How did you feel? This is the story of Patrick, one of the children at Cornerstone of Hope Orphanage.Patrick, 16 years old, is the eldest of three siblings. They were brought to the orphanage in April 2006 by Director of Children, Ministry of Women Affairs and Social Welfare after both parents died. His 2 siblings were adopted in 2007 and 2009. Since he came to the orphanage, a total of 11 children have been adopted. Cornerstone of Hope Orphanage was established for one purpose – To provide adequate LOVE & CARE for orphans. We do this by Sharing Love, Building Hope and Changing the Lives of the children. Patrick feels rejected, many times because children that came after him to the orphanage have been adopted and he is still here. What if you were Patrick? There are many Patricks that need a happy home. Won’t you help?

I support these children because

becoming cornerstones. I live for humanity. This is what gives me joy.

Without the orphanage I would …

… be lost in the world of hate, selfish, ego, pride and bitterness!Working with the children makes me feel…Fulfilled.

Challenges you face

Most people prefer to adopt children from Asia, South America, Europe and North America than from Africa. The issue of corruption and lack of professionalism associated with Africa is another major reason most people don’t want to look at Africa for adoption or send donations. However, I believe people need more education about Africa because the issues mentioned above are the same they have when they adopt from Europe and Asia.Many African immigrants have the misconception that it is difficult to adopt from Africa. Well, that is not true for those with dual nationality. It is easier and cheaper if you understand the culture and process.

What kind of help do you seek for these children?

Consider Cornerstone of Hope Orphanage or other orphanages in Africa for adoption. These children need a happy home, they need YOU. You may offer financial support or alternatively donate items like clothes and shoes.

It is fulfilling to see the rejected stones

Patrick feels rejected, many times because children that came after him to the orphanage have been adopted and he is still here. What if you were Patrick? There are many Patricks that need a happy home. Won’t you help?






Caption this



Teach me By Kawira Njeru Teach Me Tell me from whence we come, from whom we belonged, to which clan and tribe we boast, the rurals of our people, my mother tongue? I watch you protect me from all the worldly curiosity. I respect and understand you; you have told me the truth as best as you know it. Rest mama, rest assured. I could never blame, never point a finger, to whom then? I just wonder how you made it, from which well your strength you drew and springs your thirst you quenched. Whose grounds your feet you anchored, but I see you firmly on the grounds you have created. This is ours, the name of this generation “Furaha—Clan and Tribe” the crown of your title “Dr. Furaha!” you open my doors and those of others. Rest mama, rest assured. I have learned. you have taught me well, very well mama. I have watched you doze with books on the table, help with my homework after a hard day’s toil. Struggle with decisions but always had great outcomes, from you I draw our generation’s wisdom, so well taught Rest mama, rest assured Photo:riziki


Shortstory Lucy Doreen Furaha, that is the name they gave her. Furaha, meaning happiness or joy, for as they tell her, she was always smiling and couldn’t wait for jokes to laugh. She made everyone laugh and was quick to grieve with the sad, for sadness tore at her heart, and she seemed to heal almost magically all the gloomy faces in the home where she found herself growing up alongside other chil¬dren, whose background stories nearly never included, “Relatives, tribes, clans”— they were their own family. On one rainy, cold, and grey morning, a woman, walk¬ing from the slums past the bushes on her way to the “rich suburbs” for her household chores where she had been working as long as she can remember, heard some sort of crying in the thickets. Afraid to look in there alone, she called on a watchman from the nearest home

her for a younger woman. Lucy and Kim, for that is how his friends called him, approached Kim’s employer. He was from a faraway land and worked with some organisations that run projects for the needy; Kim says they called them NGO’s ( non-governmental organisa¬tions) although he did not really know what that meant. Jeans was a very kindhearted man, and being himself a family man was immediately moved nearly to tears when he heard the hurriedly told story and saw the tiny little bundle. He urgently called to his wife, Juliet, and, seeing the bundle herself, asked no questions at all. She grabbed it quickly from the hands of Lucy and disappeared into the house, calling back after the name of the woman, “Lucy,” the woman answered readily. Before Lucy went on her way, she

“You are God’s special gift. You will start your own genera¬tion, tribe, and clan! You will fight for others like you. I am sorry I cannot keep you, but we shall place you in the hands of those who will love you and care for you. and asked if he would be kind enough to go back with her and see what that might be. She had already suspected it might be a toddler thrown away by a disparate girl who didn’t know better, yet she was herself afraid to get the baby alone, for she might be accused of being involved in the crime. When they peeked, Kimathi touched lightly on the plastic bag that lay well placed on an old dirty blanket. The little face beamed at them smiling, like knowingly express¬ing its gratitude to its rescuers. Lucy the cleaning woman nearly trampled down, jumping over to secure the little baby in her arms. She prayed silently for her and thanked God for saving her. It was at such moments that Lucy graciously thanked God for her strength to see her own children grow under her love and care. Yes, it was not easy bringing up her six children in a two-roomed shelter; but they were attending school, and she had refused to give them up after their father left

humbly asked if she could call on them another day. “Yes, of course, you may,” Jeans answered friendly. Lucy quickly left for work; she was running late, but her employers were kind people, and they would surely understand. Kim went back to his post, content with himself, almost proud for his deeds. He was himself a Christian man and always looked forward to being helpful to others. Juliet checked on the baby, peeling away the layers of dirty clothes warmly wrapped around her. She was angry with the mother who had thrown this helpless thing away but also imagining the courage it had taken her to come to that decision; she knew the woman had done so with the intention that someone would pick her up and help her, for if she stayed with her she would probably die of hunger and never get a chance to go to school— so saving her baby was all that she had wanted, she had done the best

she could—give her away this way, praying and hoping she was found sooner. Juliet talked to her husband urgently, won¬dering why the government of this land was not doing anything over such social issues, but she knew very well this is one fight she would not get herself into—it would never come to be, at least not in her lifetime. It would take a miracle and a God-chosen man or woman to raise a generation of believers and doers of good social structure with severe consequences for the ignorant. A generation of leaders who would embrace such a structure without a finger of corruption among them. Sighing with resignation, she checked every inch of that tiny thing, and seeing that no insects had got at her yet, was loudly saying to her, “You are God’s special gift. You will start your own genera¬tion, tribe, and clan! You will fight for others like you. I am sorry I cannot keep you, but we shall place you in the hands of those who will love you and care for you. Do you hear me? Yes, you do, the way you smile. I know your smile will bring healing in the hearts of the troubled and light a smile on the gloomy faces.” She cleaned her up lovingly and dressed her in some oversized clothes from her own children, anything she found to make her decent. Jeans and Juliet drove off to the nearest children’s home; they narrated their story and gave her up to the care of the well-trained workers but also promised to call on them some time. And so Juliet had the little baby registered under the name “Lucy.” It was important to give all the details in the home, for they would open a file for her and write her life’s story there so when she was older, they would tell it to her,Her life’s story was unfortunately only a few hours old, but that was better than nothing at all. The young, beautiful Dr. Kendra took to Lucy imme¬diately; she was about three days old, or so she guessed, and she would later run all the necessary tests. The older children in the home were introduced to Lucy, and they suggested different names; and so the tiny little thing came to be called, “ Lucy Doreen Furaha.” Furaha, as they all called her, was truly RIZIKI JANUARY 2013 37

Shortstory a happy child—brilliant and very intelligent. She attended school, and as soon as she could help, she was all over the home in every corner, trying her hand at all the chores and helping other children with homework, especially in mathematics and sciences—being the most difficult subjects for many of the children. And from her story, as she later learned when she was twelve years old, she decided she would be a doctor when she grew up. After her university graduation, and still too young, she started working and earned good money, and there she met a man that promised marriage, but she found her¬self in the family way unexpectedly. As soon as her boyfriend heard this, he vanished, leav¬ing her alone. Furaha brought up her son single-handedly while working and still volunteering in the home where she had grown up. Spending Christmas and all other holidays there with her son, Baraka. She had him so named, for to her, he was really a blessing; and with him, she would surely start a new generation as Juliet had prayed over her life. When opportunity presented itself, Furaha got a scholarship to study for her masters abroad—away from her son. After contemplating and seeking advice from her pastors, she realised it would be okay to leave him behind in the same home where she had grown up and where he himself had come to know and appreciate as his “family.” She left with a very heavy heart, but knew this would be the way to help other children who would still come to the home. She had the key to many doors, and for many, and she would do her very best. After her two years of study, she returned home a very happy and successful young lady and was immedi¬ately offered a chance to lecture at one of the university’s while pursuing her doctorate. “This was it,” she would tell Baraka during their solitude moments together. This was the answer to Juliet’s prayer And so once again, after discussing 38 RIZIKI JANUARY 2013

carefully with the now ten-yearold Baraka, they agreed he should go to a boarding primary school. He was very mature, and from an early age, she had told him bits and pieces of their story—she would not tell much from his father, for she herself had later realised that she had known so lit¬tle about him, if at all it was all true, and she doubted it anyway after what he had done. She kind of understood and respected the decision of her birth mother but was now very determined to fight it out for other

After her two years of study, she returned home a very happy and successful young lady and was immedi¬ately offered a chance to lecture at one of the university’s while pursuing her doctorate.

children not to befall her ordeal. She had seen how the social system was run and worked for the good of most, especially those who were disadvantaged, having lived in Germany for the two years where she pursued her master’s degree. She would bring this forth to her country; every child had a right to a safe home, school, and healthcare. She went over all her plans with her son Baraka, and he encouraged her on and was very proud of his mother. He would jokingly tell her, he was of “Furaha clan.” “And from which tribe might you be?” Furaha would ask jokingly, and he would pretend to be in deep thought and would then shout, “ Dr. Furaha tribe” and both would laugh endlessly. By the time Baraka joined high school, his mother had long attained her “Dr.” title and was now a renown professor. Dr. Furaha was a gentle and humble young woman whose name was now well known, and she had become a great role-model to many of the young people in her country. She promised she would reach her goal, even if she grew old at it.

Trading her grey hairs for the morals that were lacking, teaching a society that had failed her. Educating the learned who walked away shamelessly from their responsibilities— without consequences. Preaching sharing, the heavily pocketed to part with some of its notes to give a chance to future doctors, teachers and nurses who without it, would line the streets with insecurity, hospital beds with invalids, dustbins with little “Furahas” the very death of a society, disintegration of a heritage, the burial of a culture denying traditions a life and history—a continuation. she would then pass on—this spirit infect the religious and affect the learning institutions, make the leaders straighten the ways they can today and not wait for tomorrow, it’s a society’s disease every member a healer. She will teach


Riziki is a Lifestyle magazine by Africans,for empowering,entertaining and educating Africans