Posts in Milele University Fund
Emmanuel's Journey to University Graduate

Ordinarily Milele sponsors young children beginning at their primary education, however there is one exceptional young man who broke all the rules.

Back in 2010 we had worked with Emmanuel at his primary school, with Rich in particular developing a great relationship with him after teaching some maths lessons at the school. Emmanuel would arrive before everyone else in the morning and was the last to leave at night. He came in to study on weekends and holidays, even when the school was officially closed! He repeatedly asked Rich to set him extra homework questions even after he had completed an entire textbook worth of practice questions!

Generations of Emmanuel’s Family all live together in a rural village

Generations of Emmanuel’s Family all live together in a rural village

Despite being exceptionally hardworking, Emmanuel’s family are not financially able to afford school fees. Living in a remote rural village, Emmanuel’s father works his land to feed the very large extended family. In addition to this, just as Emmanuel started his final year of secondary school his family had some very bad news. After losing his two year old sister in a fire accident, his mother was also diagnosed with advanced breast cancer. Despite receiving treatment, she tragically passed away in December 2010.

Emmanuel and his family value education above all else, and indeed his mother sacrificed the money saved for her operation in order to enable Emmanuel to attend the first term of secondary school and continue achieving.


Built his own house

Emmanuel (on the right) with his father, brother and little sister outside his house.

Without your support to achieve his dreams, Emmanuel would never have had the chance to attend any form of education beyond primary level and his future would have been restricted and far too predictable – what a waste of a hardworking, dedicated and passionate young mind.

In September 2014 Emmanuel became the first on the Milele Programme to go to University – beginning a BSC in Economics and Statistics at the University of Nairobi. The University of Nairobi is the best university in Kenya and 7th in Africa. Emmanuel has performed really well in his first semester receiving A grades for some of his varied modules averaging a top B grade over his 8 modules.


Starting out

Emmanuel starts his University journey

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Now a proud graduate

4 years later with a degree in Economics and Statistics

A degree level education has opened doors for Emmanuel which no-one in his family has ever been able to access. His future is bright and exciting and most importantly he has choices and control over his life.

We are very excited to announce that after four hard years the 21st December 2018 saw 'Big' Emmanuel graduate from the University of Nairobi with a 2.1 degree in Economics and Statistics! His dad attended his graduation along with Rieder and we as you can see from the photos attached he was quite rightly glowing with pride. They all went out for a meal together afterwards to celebrate his success and had a fabulous day. 

No-one could be more deserving of a degree. Our first graduate of the Milele programme, Emmanuel gives us all a reason to be proud and proves what Milele is here to do.

Emmanuel is a trailblazer and an inspiration – he shows us all that with determination, perseverance and big ideas we can achieve anything.
Introducing Sorrel & The Scholarship Project

Hi everyone! I’m Sorrel and I’m currently interning with Milele. The reason I applied to be an intern with Milele earlier this year is because I have decided that I would like to pursue a career in policy and research in the third sector. In particular, I would like to work with charities that are dedicated to ensuring that young people have equal chances in life, and thus are able to succeed despite personal circumstances. This is why Milele resonated with me, as I too believe that the right to education is fundamental, and that children should not be limited in their future opportunities due to a lack of economic mobility. I fully support the emphasis that Milele places on education as it allows children and young people to take control of their own lives and have agency over their future, and am delighted that I get to contribute the outstanding work that Milele does. One of the projects I have been undertaking recently is the creation of a document with details of scholarships and grants for prospective university students.  As you may know, Emmanuel Kai, one of Milele’s students and the first to attend University, is nearing the end of his degree. An important milestone for both Milele and Emmanuel! However, the issue is that the cost of university education is far greater than secondary education. Although Milele has every intention of supporting the students through university, the charity is still relatively small and therefore does not have the seemingly endless funds of some of the larger charities. So, in order to support the students, outside funding needs to be sourced to help cover the costs of university. This is where my research comes in. I have been busy locating and researching different scholarships and grants available to university applicants online, and compiling my findings into a word document to be used by the students. These scholarships can vary from fully covering tuition fees and personal expenses, to only covering a certain portion of tuition fees. Nonetheless, all of these scholarships could significantly help Milele support the students and allow them to afford the university education they all deserve. The document I have created gives the students all of the information they would need regarding the scholarships, including the nature of the scholarship, where they could undertake their studies, the entry criteria, and how they need to apply. Therefore, they only need to consult this document now to see what grants and scholarships they are entitled to. Nothing is stopping them from accessing university now with Milele by their side!

This document will no doubt help the future students that Milele will support through university, and will help them navigate the somewhat complicated process of finding and applying for scholarships and grants. The students will now be able to pick and choose which scholarships they believe will most benefit them, with the help of Milele of course! I have thoroughly enjoyed undertaking this research and playing a small role in helping the students get to university, and beyond. I wish success to every future Milele student that applies to university, and hope this document may help them take control of their own future and succeed.


Sorrel Norwood is the first Milele Intern and has been an invaluable addition to the team! If you are interested in interning for Milele, contact us at

Emmanuel Kai - Our first university student

Hi All, When we first thought about starting Milele back in 2008 we were aiming to help children to access primary school. A few years later when we took Emmanuel Kai onto Milele we extended the programme to include secondary school. We have now reached another milestone as our first child starts university.



Emmanuel Kai started studying Economics and Statistics at the University of Nairobi in September 2014. The University of Nairobi is the best university in Kenya and 7th in Africa. Emmanuel has performed really well in his first semester receiving A grades for some of his varied modules averaging a top B grade over his 8 modules.

We are so proud of Emmanuel and want all of the Milele children to be able to follow in his footsteps. To this end, we are currently in the process of developing a dedicated Milele University Fund which will allow us to ensure that any sponsored child will be able to attend university if they get the required grades.

If you would like to donate to the Milele University Fund on a one off or regular basis please get in touch here.