24 Jul The ‘Mechanics’ of Alleviating Poverty & Empowering Communities
At the end of a dusty unpaved road in Kenya’s rural Maasai Mara sits a yellow road roller – the kind used to pave roads and to breakup soil to prepare land for farming. The words “Narok County” are painted in crisp, black lettering on its frame. The barely-used road roller has remained in this very spot for more than four years. Why? Because there isn’t any who can fix it.
This road roller is not merely a broken-down piece of equipment on the side of the road. For the people we serve, it represents their livelihoods. If this piece of equipment is fixed, here is what can happen:
- Community farms and gardens would be tilled on a larger scale, rather than by hand, in preparation for planting fruits and vegetables. This would not only provide healthy, nutritious food for children to eat, but it would also provide parents with produce to sell at market, allowing them to earn an income to support their families.
- Impassable dirt roads can be smoothed, creating safer and more direct access for people, motorcycles, cattle and donkeys carrying supplies.
Road rollers are not the only vehicles in the Maasai Mara that require skilled professionals to be fixed. Ambulances transporting patients, equipment used by farmers, and airplanes carrying people, food, medicine and supplies are just some examples of the types of machinery that require skilled mechanics to keep them functional.
“We lost a patient because the ambulance had broken down on our way to the hospital.”
– Sarah, Unstoppable Nursing Scholars Student
Without vehicles like ambulances, access to vital, life-saving services is limited. Out of the 1.3M vehicles in Kenya, the majority are more than 15 years old. Not having skilled mechanics to fix these vehicles has had a detrimental economic, social and political impact. The Unstoppable Mechanics Scholars class of 2021 will change this.
As part of our Unstoppable Scholars program, the Unstoppable Foundation is awarding scholarships to the entire Mechanics class of 2021 at WE College, the new and only college of its kind in the Maasai Mara. The comprehensive two-year academic curriculum will educate and train mechanics in the following disciplines:
- Automotive engineering
- Mechanical engineering
- Motor vehicle systems
- Motor vehicle electronics
In addition to their mechanics studies, scholars will be enrolled in our Unstoppable Leadership Academy. The 2-year certificate program teaches students the leadership and life skills necessary for them to become effective leaders in their families, in the workplace as well as in their communities. Graduates will help reduce poverty and alleviate tremendous hardships in their community and the entire region by facilitating access to healthcare, food, education and income-generating opportunities.