One of the things that makes St. Vincent's unique is that once a child is admitted into our program, their family becomes part of our family, and we commit ourselves to walking with them over the
Out of this commitment has emerged our scholarship program, which currently serves 45 students from primary school to university. We provide multi-year scholarships to children from Kibera,
including those who have graduated from our nursery school and their siblings. Our program is different from many others in Kibera: while we encourage students to meet their academic
potential, we know that highly vulnerable children face many barriers to success. We select scholarship recipients based on their need and our continued support does not depend on academic
performance. We also encourage caretakers to contribute, even if it is a nominal amount, to develop a sense of ownership and pride over their children’s education.
Romario is one of these students. He overcame significant odds to graduate this year with his Bachelor's degree, the first in his family to attend college. Romario wrote this letter sharing his
thoughts about the impact of education on his life and the importance of St. Vincent's supports:
“I would like to express our sincere gratitude for your generous and selfless support towards my university education. Indeed, without your most generous contribution, I don’t know what would
have become of me at present. Sincerely, this means the world to me. You have invested in the future of a young man who was almost hopeless and running out of sorts. I still wonder how to best
express my appreciation. It is an overwhelming feeling that will never depart.
I came to this organization as a young man, whose hopes for a better future were waning and having been bruised by the acrid atmosphere of life outside school. Coming from a family that struggled
for its basic needs, my good grades from high school meant nothing, and only a few people could sympathize with my sorry state. After a meeting with the board members, I was filled with hope and
I thought I could dream again. Since then, things have never been the same.
Today, I come out as a graduate with a Bachelor of Science in Industrial Biotechnology with a First Class Honours from one of the most prestigious universities in Kenya, Jomo Kenyatta University
of Agriculture and Technology. What a moment to be alive! I am proud of this great achievement. I can now look into the future with great enthusiasm, a scientist in the making. This wouldn’t have
been possible without the support I have received from St. Vincent’s.
I look forward to pursuing my Masters degree in Biotechnology in the near future, and God willing, abroad! Through this, I would also be able to impact my society positively in a medical and
economic sense. Thank you very much St Vincent de Paul Community Development Organization. May God’s grace be sufficient to you all as you aspire to continue serving humanity.”