Me to We and Free the Children, build on Canada’s existing relationship with non-governmental organizations. Vanessa Hynes, wife of Canada’s High Commissioner to Kenya, hosted a group of 27 Canadian youth visiting Kenya on a Me to We field trip.
During the brief stop at the official residence, the youth also met with Canadian High Commission staff and had the opportunity to talk with them about Canada’s role in Kenya and the region.
Canadian youth from universities across Canada have been given the opportunity to gain valuable first-hand experience of life in rural Kenya. They will be exposed to the challenges that women face in rural areas. For example, because there is no running water, the women must walk long distances to fetch water. They will also be introduced to Swahili, Kenya's national language.
Siera Bearchell - also known as Miss Teen Saskatchewan and Miss Teen Canada World - is part of the group of young people that will have the opportunity to interact with local elders and community leaders from the Masai Mara Region.
“I have always been interested in coming to Kenya and am excited to be here. During this visit I will be involved in building a school and working with a clean water project,” said Miss Teen Canada-World, Siera Bearchell. “Once I return to Canada, I would also like to raise awareness of the project and my visit to Kenya.”
Me to We trips to Kenya offer high school and university students a unique experience. Students are able to take knowledge acquired in the classroom and apply it to real life and global situations through youth-driven development projects.
Free the Children is known as “The largest network of children helping children in the world” and has built over 500 schools around the world, bringing the fundamental right of education to over 50,000 children.
The High Commission to Kenya continues to maintain strong ties with these organizations. Hundreds of communities have benefited from their water and sanitization projects, medical resources and alternative income programs. The organizations’ success is fuelled by the passion and work of youth in Canada reaching out to their peers in developing nations such as Kenya.