In the last week of January 2023, the System Change Network Kenya (SCN Kenya) meeting took place in our Making More Health guesthouses in Webuye, Western Kenya. GAASPP, one of our partner NGOs hosted more than 30 people from diverse backgrounds: our SCN members, a community representative from each location who locally are responsible to bring new skills and knowledge to their peers ( system changer ambassadors), MMH Fellows/ social entrepreneurs and international consultants and members from our system changer network in India.
After a first year of piloting together with eight local NGOs from Western and Central Kenya (the SCN was launched in Feb. 2022), we
- analyzed again the impact of our network structures. These structures ensure that all skills and trainings reach everyone in our eight communities.
- have built these exchange structures now also among our community ambassadors. These are people from the communities themselves who work as trainers to train their peers. They meet among each other and bring innovative solutions to all SCN locations, which might start at one location and then are rolled out. This makes a huge difference, especially when it comes to income generation activities.
- developed ideas around an ecosystem of founders
- planned the next milestones.
- discussed the financial planning, code of conduct and policies we might need
- looked into standardization of processes that should apply to all SCN members.
- developed new ideas on how to make more mental well-being possible for all involved communities.
The analyses and feedback from the past SCN year was overwhelming. We see definitely and can even prove a huge growth of outreach in the communities, a growth in terms of serving people more holistically. There is a lot of passion of everyone in the room to continue our SCN journey.
As one of our SCN members said: “ There is a a lot of hope now – everywhere in the communities. The hope that life could change… And there is hope at our site that together we can reach more than in the past. We are simply proud to be be part of the SCN and to be together on this innovative journey of change.”
Besides the leaders of the NGOs of our network we invited also the key community ambassadors of each location. They are part of the communities we work with and trained in many things. They coordinate then peer to peer trainings while making sure that we can have an exponential growth of knowledge transfer. They build also a network and visit each other to bring skills from one location to another.
Also some international guests, eg from our system changer network in India, as well as Markus Ravio, one of our Making More Health fellow, a network analyst specialist and two consultants from the social and social entrepreneurial background joined and brought a lot of valuable and innovative aspects into the SCN.
We were very happy, too for having a representative from Malteser International with us as partner and supporter of the SCN.
The three days were filled with discussions, decision making and learning. We had a lot of informal exchanges and all enjoyed the face to face meeting – because trust and human relationships is what makes things happen.
There is still a long way to go. But we are on the way!