Who we are

Welcome and thanks for visiting this blog! My name is Manuela and I lead social entrepreneurial programs in India and Kenya.

My contact details: pastore.manuela@googlemail.com

I travel often to Kenya, not as a tourist, not in high level surroundings, but to slum and rural areas where people live in difficult and vulnerable surroundings. I meet the people who are close to the poverty line, stay at their homes, learn about their challenges and understand more about their life. Together, with my local social worker teams and my friends we identify which are the most pressing needs in the village, in the slum, in this or that target group. We look for solutions, changemakers and develop together new ideas what could be the next step and then … we do it.  Often we start small, learn by doing and  based on the impact we develop the activities further.

I collaborate closely with some social entrepreneurs from our network, too (I lead the Making More Health initiative /Community activation for Boehringer Ingelheim – more information you find at http://www.makingmorehealth.com) .

However, this blog is a private one and reflects my own experiences and thoughts. There are so many stories to tell, stories that go far beyond my professional activities.

We have a huge vision. We, that’s  our team: my good friends in Kenya in the communities and 9 local social organisations in Nairobi, Homabay, Webuye, Eldoret and other locations. We run projects on health, hygiene, income generation and education. We invest in infrastructures and do cultural exchange clubs. We work with people with albinism and their families, with elderly, with teachers and students, women and children. …for all those in need.

We link solutions to each other and to the people. One solution is no solution. It’s about tackling basic needs in parallel.

Strategic empowerment makes sense, but it needs to grow locally, based on the real situation. What we need to learn in the rich world is that high cost strategy discussions and consultancy from “experts who never have visited the houses and slums here”, discussions on a high level in offices somewhere around the world may lead to some fact and numbers on paper, and some good looking slides, but do not really help. We can be better – so let’s go for it.

Producing Soap, raising chicken, good farming skills, some self-confidence strengthening activity and basic business and digital training, cultural events, raising awareness for more health and hygiene – can become the starting point for someone to grow – but sustainably only if combined in the right way at the right time and sustainably set up where trust and ownership in the community itself is established.

Isn’t this something we all should be aware of and stand for? It’s for sure not the one big campaign, the one big “we have made it behavior”. It’s all about them. Has their life over a period of years really changed for better? And a better how they define it.

We belief in a better world. In education and development, but together WITH the people, not for them. We belief in self-empowerment, in partnerships, in trust and ownership. And mindset shifts at our site.

The challenges of the people are very complex. We need to work together with others to bring in many diverse solutions – at one place. That’s why our focus area is Western Kenya and many stories here are from this geographical area.

If you are interested in more details,  please write to pastore.manuela@googlemail.com.

Actually, I need silicon forms for soap, donations for glasses for our children with albinism, donations for a parent center, income generating ideas and vocational trainers who train women and the youth.

We are happy if you support our projects – with expertise and while communicating about us. While co-creating with us. While booking our guesthouses in Webuye for your next international meeting instead of going to a five star superhotel.

Thank you!

P.S: You find more about myself also at LinkedIn