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Kenya 2022



In the heart of the Maasai lands of south-central Kenya, far from the main tourist areas, these schoolchildren are delighted that their lessons are over for the day. For centuries the Maasai have been nomadic pastoralists herding cattle, goats, and sheep across the grasslands of eastern Africa. But the future for most Maasai will be much different. Now living year-round in small villages, these children are receiving a formal education intended to prepare them for a future that will encompass both their traditional ways and the modern world.

John Donelson © 2017
PCV Ghana 1965–1966
Secondary School Math & Science Teacher

Republic of Kenya
Jamhuri ya Kenya
Eastern Africa

Area 224K mi2; 580K km2

Arable 10%

Population 55M (246/mi²; 95/km²)

Gov’t Presidential republic

Capital Nairobi (4.9M)

GCP/Capita $4,330

Unemployment 40%

In Poverty 36%

Infant Mortality 29/1K live births (61st)

Life expectancy 69 yrs

Children Aged <15 Yrs 39% of pop

Median Age 20 yrs

Literacy 82%

Languages English (official), Kiswahili (official), numerous indigenous languages

Religions Christian 86% (Protestant 34%, Catholic 21%, Evangelical 20%, African Instituted Churches 7%, other Christian 4%), Muslim 11%, other or none 3%

Health 5% of GDP

Education 5% of GDP (46th)

Military 1% of GDP (97th)

Labor Force Agriculture 61%, industry 7%, services 32%

PCVs 1964–2014, 2019–present/2020 CURRENT: 0  TTD: 5,145

Adult Books

The River and the Source
By Margaret A. Ogala

Genre: Fiction
Publisher: Focus Books (Nairobi; 1st edition: 1994)
ISBN-10: 9966882057
ISBN-13: 978-9966882059

This epic tale of three generations of Luo women takes the reader from a nineteenth-century rural village in Western Kenya to the end of the 20th century in modern-day Nairobi. Drawing upon their ancestral legacy of courage and reserve, the descendants of family matriarch Akoko confront daunting social and cultural upheavals, from the coming of Catholicism to the AIDS crisis.

Winner of the Jomo Kenyatta Literature Prize (1995) and the Commonwealth Writers Prize for Best First Book in the Africa Region (1995).

A required text on the Kenyan national secondary school syllabus.

Kids' Books

Auma’s Long Run
By Eucabeth A. Odhiambo

Format: 298 pp
ISBN: 978-1-51242-784-4
Age Range: 10-14 years
Publisher: Minneapolis: Carolrhoda Books, 2017

Thirteen-year-old Auma loves running and is hoping one day to earn a track scholarship to attend high school and then become a doctor one day. When her father grows ill she must decide whether to continue her schooling or begin working to help support her family. Explores the effects of the AIDS epidemic in Kenya in the 90s.


Film: Rafiki
Director: Wanuri Kahiu
Country: Kenya, South Africa, Germany, Netherlands, France, Norway, Lebanon, UK
Filming Locations: Nairobi, Kenya
Release Date: 19 April 2019 (USA)
Language: English, Swahili
Run Time: 83 minutes
Color: Color

Rafiki (Swahili for ‘friend’) is a 2018 Kenyan drama film directed by Wanuri Kahiu. It is the story of romance that grows between two young women, Kena and Ziki, amidst family and political pressures around LGBT rights in Kenya.

Summary: Kena and Ziki long for something more. Despite the political rivalry between their families, the girls resist and remain close friends, supporting each other to pursue their dreams in a conservative society. When love blossoms between them, the two girls will be forced to choose between happiness and safety. Inspired by Monica Arac de Nyeko’s “Jambula Tree,” which chronicles a story of two girls in love in Uganda, “Rafiki” challenges deep rooted cynicism about same sex relationships among actors, crew, friends, and family in Kenya.


Sauti Sol

Sauti Sol is a Kenyan afro-pop band formed in 2005 in Nairobi, Kenya, by vocalists Bien-Aimé Baraza, Willis Chimano, and Savara Mudigi. Initially an a cappellagroup, guitarist Polycarp Otieno joined before they named themselves Sauti.

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