Kijana Global Innovation School

Our Kijana Global Innovation School fuses a holistic vision of education to specific learning activities that connect learners to the larger global society which we inhabit and share.

Students will be inspired and nurtured to fulfill their potentials and will be prepared to advance to the next stage academically with confidence, global understanding, and the individual and collaborative skills to compete and contribute in a challenging and engaging world. Kijana’s developing world class institution will also be a venue for international collaboration as educators and students from other countries, including the United States, will be invited to visit, learn, and share in a beautiful and culturally interactive environment.

Table of Contents

Academics

Students will learn to be engaged global citizens. Students will interact directly with their peers in other countries and will be taught global challenges and develop skills in analysis and problem-solving in order to be life-long global citizens. Students at the Kijana Global Innovation School will learn how to overcome challenges both individually and collectively.

Our Team

A school’s teachers are the heart and soul of the educational and personal relationship to learning for students.  We have carefully selected a team of dedicated, experienced, innovative, and personable professionals for our inaugural teaching staff.  Our team is led by the Principal, Mr. Simeon Buluku, who is a Kijana beneficiary, and experienced International School teaching professional. 

Our teaching staff is complemented by a small team of staff members, who assist is creating a comfortable, safe, and structured environment for learning.  Additional non-teaching staff members include a secretary, cook, cleaner, and driver. 

Our team of caring professionals is dedicated to providing  an enjoyable, yet energetic learning experience for our youths.

Meet the Team

Christine was born in 1991 in Ibukolo village, in Butere Constituency in Kakamega County. She says that Ibukolo is a local word that that means ‘the ancestoral place’ of the Butere people. She is married and has 3 children. 

She studied at Kibokolo primary school and graduated in 2007 with a score of 320 out of 500 marks. In 2013, she joined Buchenya Girls high school within Butere, and graduated in 2013. She then studied Early Childhood Education from 2011 to 2013, under Pursue program in Kenya from the Chantily Academy of England. She is currently studying Early Childhood Education at Butere ECDE Centre in order to acquire a mandatory Kenyan certification. 

She has been an ECDE teacher at Ebenezer Academy from 2016 to 2019. While there, she taught Mathematical, Language, Environmental, Religious, Creative, and Music Activities to pre-primary pupils.

She is now an assistant ECDE teacher at our Kijana Global Innovation School, in Butere Constituency, in Kakamega County, Western Kenya, in Africa. She is motivated by the desire to teach in a global school within her home area as a way of eradicating illiteracy in her community through teaching. She says that the Kijana Global Innovation School has an outstanding school infrastructure, best experienced teachers and up to standard modern learning and teaching material in the entire western Kenya. She says that she is proud to be a teacher here, the ultimate place for young learners.

Julius, the first born in a family of 3 siblings, was born in Esiarambatsi village, in Emuhaya Constituency in Western Kenya. He is married and has three children.

He joined Ebusiloli Primary School in 1991 and graduated in 1999, with a score of 366 out of 700 marks in the national examinations. He then joined Ebusiloli Secondary in 2000 but dropped out in 2001 due to lack of school fees. Julius later joined Ebunangwe Boys High School and graduated in 2003 with a C Plain grade. In 2008, he joined St. Joseph’s Teachers Training College where he pursued a P1 certificate course in Education.  He graduated in 2010 after specializing in Mathematics and Sciences.

Kijana Educational Empowerment Initiative kickstarted Julius’ teaching career by paying for his teaching services at Ebusiloli Primary School from 2012 to 2014. He taught Mathematics and Science in grades 3 and 8, where he helped to catapult the academic performance from below average to a steady above average performance. He served the school with dedication up to 2019. 

Julius’ is now a teacher at our Kijana Global Innovation School, in Butere constituency, in Kakamega county; an opportunity he got in December 2019, after going through a successful application and interview process. Here, he teaches Mathematics, Physical Education, Creative Art, and Christian Religious Education for grade 1 and 2. He is the head of Evaluation and Assessment and also heads the Mathematics department at the school.

He says that this is a unique global school with the best learning and teaching material, best school infrastructure in Western Kenya, and best qualified and experienced teachers. He is proud to be part of the team that is taking Kenyan education global through the Kijana Global Innovation School, a perfect learning environment for your child. Welcome.

Solomon hails from Mwituha village in Emuhondo Sub location in Emuhaya Constituency in Western Kenya. He attended Ilungu primary school from 1999 to 2007, where he scored a remarkable 325 out 500 marks in his national grade eight exams. He joined Ebunangwe Boys High School from 2009 to 2011. He later joined Sigalame High School in Busia County, where he graduated in 2013 with a B plain grade of 64 points. 

Solomon is grateful that Kijana Educational Empowerment Initiative paid some of his school fees at Sigalame school when he needed the help most. He says that the opportunity gave him the inspiration to work hard in order to help change his and the lives of others in need in the future. 

He joined Maseno University in 2014 and graduated in 2018 with a degree of Bachelor of Education Arts; Geography Kiswahili combination. He also holds a diploma in Bible Studies from Bible Discovery school in Ruiru, in Nairobi. Solomon is currently pursuing a diploma course in education management at Maseno University.

With a wealth of knowledge, and passion to serve the community, Solomon is now a teacher of Kiswahili language, Christian Religious Education and Environmental Activities for grade 1 and 2 pupils at our Kijana Global Innovation School. He is also the head of the portfolio program in the school. He says that he loves the conducive environment for learning and teaching, and the unique global school infrastructure, rare to find in these parts of the country. He contends that this is the best place for learners in Kenya, Africa and beyond. It is a globally connected school that greatly advances opportunities for your child. Karibu! Welcome!

Now nicknamed as ‘Teacher Sam’ by pupils at the Kijana Global Innovation School, Samwel was born in 1987 in Enyahela village, in Ipali location, Emuhaya Constituency of Western Kenya, Africa. He is the fifth born in a family of 8 siblings. He is a man married with 4 children; 3 boys and 1 girl. He is a humble, composed man full of friendly smiles. 

He schooled at Ebbiba Primary from 1997 to 2004 where he scored 265 out 500 marks in eighth grade. He then joined Esibila Secondary School from 2005 to 2006. He went on to complete his high school education at Essong’olo Secondary School in 2008. 

In 2014, Sam joined St. Michael Trinity Teachers Training College in Eregi, and graduated in 2015 with a certificate in Early Childhood Development Education (E.C.D.E), with a Credit rank. He furthered his education from the same institution in 2016 and graduated with a Diploma in E.C.D.E, with a Credit rank. In Kenya, E.C.D.E course is taken by almost 90% female students. However, Sam says that he was inspired by an internal urge to build the academic foundation for young learners.  He was the only male ECDE student in a class of 78 students in his first semester of his first year. Sam has a passion for E.C.D. education and says that he plans to further his studies to the highest level possible. 

He was a dependable E.C.D.E teacher at Neema Grace Christian School, in Luanda Constituency from 2016 to 2019. He was the pupils’ favorite, their role model and a father figure. 

Sam is now the ECDE teacher at our Kijana Global Innovation School, in Butere Constuency in Kakamega County, in western Kenya, after a highly successful interview.  Sam enjoys his profession.  He loves working with the children and they love him too. He says that he knew the school through Kijana Educational Empowerment Initiative Facebook page, and that he is grateful to be a teacher at this prestigious Global Innovation school.  He acknowledges that the school has the best school infrastructure, learning and teaching material, and a tranquil environment conducive for learning that cannot be matched by any other in Western Kenya. All are welcome.

Phoebe was born in Konyowo village, in Ugenya Sub County in Siaya County in the Lake Victoria region in Kenya. She is married and has 2 children. 

In 2001, She went to St. Mary’s Primary school in Nakuru and graduated in 2008 with a 290 out of 500 marks score in the national exams. She then joined St. Mary’s Girls high school in Nakuru in 2009 for her secondary education and graduated in 2012 with a C plus grade. Phoebe then joined FPFK Institute in Nakuru, where she pursued a computer studies course. She later joined Ujima College for 2 years where she pursued a proficiency secretarial course. 

She is currently serving as the Secretary of our Kijana Global Innovation School after having been appointed in December 2019. She previously worked as the secretary at the Royal City Hotel in Nakuru from 2014 for 5 years.

Her primary role is performing secretarial duties at the Kijana Global Innovation School, which includes receiving, meeting and greeting school stakeholders, responding to school telephone calls, and preparing school reports as required, among other duties.

Richard is a humble and strong muscular man. He is popularly known as Richie. He was born in 1973 at Mumakunda Village, in Eshiatsala Sub location, in Butere Constituency in Kakamega County of Western Kenya. He is married and has 5 children; 2 boys and 3 girls.

He joined Eshiatsala Primary School in 1981 and graduated in 1990. In 1987, he was forced by his parents to repeat grade 7 so that his elder brother in the same class could proceed to the eighth grade. Upon graduation in 1990, Richie scored an impressive 54 out of 72 points. He then joined St. Peter Boys High School in Mumias, but unfortunately dropped out a year later because his parents were unable to afford his school fees. 

He joined Ishmael Driving School in Mombasa in 1998. He first learnt the BCE classes of driving.  Then he further learnt the A class in 2006, a mandatory requirement for public service vehicle drivers.

Richie worked as a taxi driver in Mombasa from 1999 to 2005.  In 2006, he worked as tour driver at Mwangaza Tours. His humble persona and dedication to his work, earned his next job. He was then employed by a German family as their driver from 2007 to 2011, when they relocated back to Germany. He then moved to Moro Tours as a tour driver from 2011 to 2014. He decided to go back to his home village in 2014, where he was appointed by the then Member of Parliament for Butere Constituency; Hon. Andrew Toboso as his personal bodyguard.

As a widely experienced driver, he was appointed in March 2020 as the Kijana Global Innovation School Driver. He enjoys driving. Here, he drives a comfy 14 seater Toyota Hiace of a 9L engine. He says that he is really touched by the good plans that Kijana Educational Empowerment Initiative has in changing his society. He adds that the Kijana Global Innovation School in Sabatia has created employment to many people, changing their lives and those of others. He is thankful to the Kijana President Mr. James P. Cummings for this opportunity to serve.

Damary was born in Shitali village in Butere Sub County in Kakamega County in 1979. She says that she loved cooking since growing up as a young girl. She also likes watching movies and she says that her favorite movie is ‘The Titanic.’

Damary joined Buchenya Primary School in 1987 and graduated in 1995 with a score of 350 out of 700 marks in the national examinations. She then joined Lihrembe girls secondary in 1996 and graduated in 1999. In 2001, she joined Intraglobal Training Institute where she trained for a certificate course in Hotel and Catering Management.

She worked as a kitchen attendant at Kilimoni Secondary School as a kitchen attendant from 2002 to 2003. She then worked as a sales lady at House of Manji (biscuits’ company) from 2004 for 2 years. She later worked at Regal Press in Industrial area, Nairobi as a tea girl from 2006 to 2011. 

She was appointed as a cook in December 2019 at the Kijana Global Innovation School. She says that she is lucky to serve at this prestigious global school in a tranquil remote setting, and super conducive for every learner.

News and Events

Our School

Kijana School Opening

We opened our Kijana Global Innovation School with 15 students on January 13, 2020.  Five teachers served as our inaugural faculty.   The school was still in the process of being constructed, yet our students and their families were eager to be part of such a special and growing school. From the beginning, classrooms were much more spacious than area schools and the rooms were clean and with only 15 students, the five experienced teachers were able to provide significant individual attention to learners. By March 13th, when all schools in Kenya were closed due to the pandemic, student enrollment had risen to 28.  Since the school has closed, we have continued to provide students with resources to learn at home.  We have additionally provided families and other community members with care packages of food, soap, and masks to assist them during these challenging times.

Emergent School Culture

We had only just begun to develop a lively and comfortable learning environment for our students when the pandemic forced all schools to close.  We are continuing to develop an environment where learners explore, play, interact with their peers and adults in a safe environment for development. We have a comfortable playground, very spacious classrooms with inviting furniture, many contemporary children’s books and beautiful kid’s carpets.  We are developing plans to incorporate manipulatives, such as LEGO, into a structured learning environment with the goal of ultimately developing a robotics team.  Each student has access to reading material at present and we are diligently developing a literary culture.  We believe strongly that the physical learning space is extremely important. Students learn and feel comfortable, as we all do, in beautiful, inviting places. Consequently, we have unique public art already established on the school campus and will be developing wonderful artistic displays throughout the school in order to encourage the development of student creativity and expression. Students will ultimately be invited to create their own artistic expressions which will be preserved over years at the school so students learn to shape and impact their community and etch their own creative mark on the future.

A Vision Realized

The Kijana Global Innovation School has been a long term goal of Kijana President James P. Cummings, who after 30 years of sustained relationship building and commitment to uplifting educational communities of western Kenya and beyond, has succeeded in opening the doors of the institution.  

The school is located at Sabatia-Butere, Kakamega County, at Mulusi Village, Ekero-Buyango Rd. Kenya.

The Kijana Global Innovation School has a capacity of 250 students as of mid-year 2020.  Kijana Educational Empowerment Initiative, the parent NGO/Non-profit organization is developing a robust financial aid program to serve many of the capable, but underserved youth of the local community as it grows.  President James P. Cummings intends to develop the school into the most advanced academic K-12 institution in the three-county region of Kakamega, Siaya, and Vihiga and a model for K-12 educational development worldwide. 

Phase One of the School’s physical development was overseen by Project Manager, Ebby Shiroya. The Architect and Contractor was Jeremiah Awori, and the site plan initial layout was the vision of Kijana Vice-President and Co-founder, Bruce Huber.  The Founding Principal is Mr. Simeon Buluku Apeli.

Help Build the School

Our Multi-year Capital Campaign

Our Kijana Global Innovation School has only been possible as a result of many generous donors.  We are in the midst of a multi-year Capital Campaign to raise the necessary funds to build this institution of wonder, exploration, inspiration and collective and individual skill development. 

Consider joining the many individuals, and foundations, who have invested in our vision and are paving the way for these incredible learning opportunities for our global youth.  

Together we are creating opportunities for youth to explore their talents, find new inspiration, seek new avenues for determination and become change-makers for the future in a variety of ways.

 

Click on the following link to see our Network for Good Capital Campaign page.    If interested in donating in other ways, including stock, please contact Kijana President, James P. Cummings at kijana@kijana.org or kijanaschool@gmail.com.

Please see our Campaign page at Network for Good, at the following link. 

https://kijana.networkforgood.com/

We recognize here the initial leadership gifts and pledges of the following individuals and foundations. We will update the list as new gifts are donated. We are particularly grateful to Stephanie and John Pew, whose gift in May of 2019 of $100,000 provided us with the seed money to begin construction in earnest, launching the development of the school. 

Thank you very much to all who have contributed.

Campaign Donors

School Starter: $100,000+

Stephanie and John Pew

Kate and Geoff Cubitt

Global Citizen: $25,000+

The Progressive Education Foundation

Gail and James L. Cummings

James Bohnen

Innovator: $10,000+

Suzanne and Brian Selmo

Tammie and RJ Cummings

Edward & Bethel Kean Foundation

The Endeavor Foundation

Explorer: $5,000+

Anonymous

Independent Thinker: $1000+

Kevin Pearson

John Billingsley

Ariel Shibilski

Nancy McDaniel

Elizabeth Brown

Megan Sarnecki

Erika Ford

Priyesh Shah

Aaron Wielenberg

Marna and Phil Pier

Griot/Storyteller: $500+

Catherine Broadhead

James P. Cummings

Kathleen Hudson

Lekshmi Venu

Bridge Builder: $100+

Hailey Albergo

Hyacinthia Becton

The Began Family

Rebecca Bush

Nick Chimerakis

Ben Clark

Marsha Cummings

Molly Cummings

Susan Duncan

Joyce Farling

Tiffany Felician

Robert Gass

Martha Gilbert

Danile Goggin

Brian Hammer

Nancy Hill

Jean Hanson

Bruce Huber

Gary Huber

Matthew Inbusch

Scott Kattenbraker

Paul Lawler

Mark Madison

John McAvoy

Everett McKinney

Christine Meserve

Rhinah Ondiso

Ruth Ostrom-Becker

Ruth Petzold

Dan and Tom Pier

Linda and Ron Ream

Elisabeth Romfh

Rebecca Ryan

Anita and Jack Scarola

Gretchen Schaefer

Alexandra Sexton-Milligan

Ebby Shiroya

Robert Simpson

Angela Szuminski

Dan Tighe

Debra Watkins

Jamie Weinstein