"When we decide to involve ourselves with the street child, we must understand that we are dealing with young personalities deformed by hate, neglect, rejection, abuse and ignorance." - Anne Wanjugu
Tumshangilieni is a proven success story.
- Because it has been successfully, uniquely, popularly running for 22 years.
- Because it has been able to raise recurrent cost from local and international supporters.
- Because Tumshangilieni has a motivated, dedicated Director and staff who have been trained through various workshops to deal with the "exceptional" child through performances, education and home care.
Street children are among the highly marginalized and vulnerable human beings wherever they exist. The UN Convention of the Child and other advocacies for the Rights of Children has had little effect on the rising number of street children or their situation. Street children have no rights. They continue to suffer while the society, leaders and governments, to a large extent, passively watch the phenomenon develop.
In response, fourteen street children gave their first public performance before a capacity audience in Nairobi’s National Theatre on the eve of 12 July 1994 for members of the UN’s Committee of Ten (established to monitor implementation of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child). Rehearsals for the street children then began under the tutelage of the late actress, Anne Wanjugu, at the Holy Family Basilica located in the centre of Nairobi, Kenya. The days passed and more neglected children who sniffed glue, prostituted themselves and practiced petty theft joined the others led by a group of volunteer women who found it impossible to prepare for performances without providing the children with food, and, as time went by, accommodation.
Tumshangilieni provides a safe haven and home for the children with primary schooling, health care, performing arts centre, skate park on an eco friendly campus self sufficient in solar power, rain catchment, fish pond, rabbit and chicken runs, green house and gardens.
When there is space available, children (primarily the most desperate) are brought to Tumshangilieni with as much case history as possible and police report from The Nairobi Children’s Home, Joseph Kangethe Rescue Centre and the Kayole Children’s Centre.
Under primary level we have 178 chidren; With in-house we have 89 kids;43 boys and 46 girls,Community kids are 89 in total;46 boys and 43 girls.
Periodic in-house training seminars continue to raise the standards of the school.
At present there are 21 boys and 18 girls attending Secondary Boarding and Day Schools.
On successful completion of Secondary School, the children have the opportunity to continue with vocational training or to attend University.
4 boys and 1 girl are presently attending University
20 boys and 8 girls are attending college and vocational training.
60 Children have completed college, university and vocational training.
16 students awaiting to join college and university.
We need your help to place children who are waiting for positions in colleges, vocational training and universities.
Home/guardian visits are regularly carried out and assessed.
Guardian/child meetings are regularly held.
Over 20 years of performing arts training has proven to be a very effective means to help empower children to give a message of buoyant hope, gain self-confidence, discipline, the ability to work in teams, to sensitize the public as to the plight of their circumstances, and, in some cases, to prepare children for careers as performers.
In addition to its performance activities within Kenya and East Africa, Tumshangilieni children have trained in China and performed in Germany, USA (including the Kennedy Centre and Broadway), Greece, Italy, Thailand, Zimbabwe and elsewhere.
Tumshangilieni’s skate park is the only one in Kenya and open to schools and the public.
Farm and Animals
Farming and the rearing of poultry, rabbits and fish provides the children with a healthy diet. The children benefit from workshops where they learn about crop and small scale farming. Excess produce is sold to generate income.
Director, Japheth Njenga’s staff include 12 teachers inclusive of two head teachers; administrative staff which includes a director’s assistant, social worker, accountant receptionist, driver, and, home staff inclusive of a matron, cooks, cleaners and guards and two who work in the farm.