My name is James Ouma. I’m the founder of Lifesong Kenya. I would like to give the history of Lifesong Kenya a personal touch.
About eight years ago, I got a job as a children’s television show producer. My work involved interacting with school children who lacked proper parenting. Because I also grew up without a father, I identified with their challenges.
After awhile, I started challenging children to envision a better world for themselves. I encouraged them to appreciate who they are as opposed to focusing on what they didn’t have.
History of Lifesong Kenya
In July 2012, I met 100 boys in juvenile prison. What begun as a weekly mentoring program soon turned into a long lasting engagement.
The weekly program involved;
- visiting boys in prison
- tracing their homes and parents
- verifying information with police officers
- seeking for reconciliation with victims of crime
That year, I made the most difficult decision in my life. I decided to quit my job as a TV producer so I could work as a full time volunteer. My conviction was that I was going to earn an income as a writer. I also believed that I was going to use my earnings to sustain Lifesong Kenya.
I am currently looking for work as a creative writer. That means I am not earning enough to sustain an organization. It is not easy operating without resources. But, I haven’t given up.
I am currently using needles, sewing thread and buttons to sustain our organization. It is my hope that other correctional institutions will replicate our mentoring model.
I know it is not going to be an easy road. But it is a cause that I am willing to lay everything else aside. I invite you to be part and parcel of our journey. Together, we are going to give vulnerable children a platform to grow to their full potential. I look forward to hearing from you.