Namelok Junior Academy is located in the village of Kisamis in the Kajiado North district of the Rift Valley province, 42km from Nairobi. It opened in 2010 with 10 students, and now enrolls 88 students between the ages 3 – 14. The primary languages are English and Swahili. Namelok is a Maasai term that means “sweet,” which describes the children’s smiles and pride as they learn to read and write.
“From Grass to Grace” is the motto at Namelok. Their first classroom was under a tree, no uniforms, a few books to share, no toilet or school lunches. They had the earth beneath them and the desire to learn. Basically, a few dedicated mothers saw a need for schooling in their quiet village and created the opportunity.
Namelok has the following Active Objectives:
- To drive away illiteracy among the Maasai community;
- To motivate parents to educate their daughters, as well as their sons;
- To give all pupils a structured, caring environment in which to grow in mind, body and spirit;
- To serve the community, sharing their reading and writing skills, promoting sexual education, as well as health and safety awareness, and spreading hope from team sports and the creative expression seen in art, drama, music and writing.
Future Goals include:
- To expand to a secondary school in order to continue the education of their students;
- To see their students go on to university and find prosperous, meaningful work;
- To create economic growth and health awareness in Kisamis through generations of confident, educated young adults who are motivated to give back to their homeland.
Namelok Junior Academy exists because families in the village of Kisamis believe children are the future. They know that educating their youth with nothing is better than giving into illiteracy, boredom, and hopelessness. Now, nearly a hundred students have learned to read and write, and their eyes are opening to the world and all its possibilities.
In order for Namelok to achieve government recognition, we have been focusing on the construction of 5 classrooms, a kitchen, a bathroom, and a sports field with equipment. This was the school’s immediate wish list upon opening in 2010, and over the past six years we’ve built 5 classrooms and a kitchen, in addition to sending books, starting a lunch program, and hosting an annual writing competition.
See the early stages of building the fifth classroom here. Thank you to everyone who donated!