Summer Institute

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What Are You Doing This Summer?
Apply for the Shining Hope for Communities Summer Institute!

Shining Hope for Communities is excited to announce the launch of our new summer volunteer opportunity – the Summer Institute! The institute is a highly competitive program that provides deeply motivated and mature students with on-the-ground experience working with our projects in Kenya.

Participants will be focused on working at The Kibera School for Girls, with exposure to our other development projects as well. If you are interested in coming to Nairobi, Kenya to volunteer at an elementary school for girls in Kibera – Africa’s largest slum – please consider applying!

The Details:

Students accepted to participate in the Institute will engage in an intensive, structured volunteer experience. Institute volunteers will work primarily at The Kibera School for Girls, an elementary school for high-need girls. In the mornings, Institute participants will provide students will tutoring and mentoring—accelerating their academic performance and forming meaningful relationships with our students.

In the afternoons, Institute participants will take responsibility for running a summer camp for our students. Each participant will take turns designing and executing workshops that expose students to new skills such as sports, arts & crafts, juggling, music, drama, etc. Monday through Friday, volunteers will be at the Kibera School for Girls from 7:30am – 4pm. Weekends are free for volunteers to explore Nairobi and the surrounding area at their own leisure.

Volunteers will also be introduced to Shining Hope’s other projects such as our health clinic and other youth and community programs. However, applicants should note that the Institute will be focused on working at the school and with our students. Participation in other Shining Hope projects will be determined on an “as needed” basis.

Tentative Program Schedule Overview

June 16th Arrival day – arrive at NBO and take shuttle to Nairobi Guest House
June 17th – 19th Orientation to Nairobi/Kibera
June 20th First day at KSG
July 2nd Day trip to Hell’s Gate, Naivasha
July 7th Last day at KSG – celebration!
July 8th Your Choice: Optional Trip to Masai Mara or Mombasa
July 10th Shining Hope Farewell Dinner
July 11th Return home—shuttle from Nairobi Guest House to NBO

Who should apply?

Admissions to the institute are very competitive and the program is suited for mature, flexible individuals willing to dive in and work hard! To apply you must have completed your freshman year of college (or equivalent) by June 2011.

While anyone who meets this requirement is eligible to apply, the institute is targeted towards undergraduate students or recent graduates looking for shorter-term volunteer experience.

You will love the institute if….

  • You are looking for a challenging, meaningful experience with real responsibility.
  • You are passionate about Shining Hope’s mission and work, with a commitment to learning from local leadership and empowering women and girls.
  • You are comfortable working across cultures and in an environment that lacks many western comforts.
  • You enjoy meeting people and forming lasting relationships.
  • You love young children and enjoy working with them.
  • You understand that Shining Hope runs programs that have a tremendous impact on the lives of people in Kibera and that you will make a contribution to that work. You also get that this entails real responsibility and your actions impact thousands of people. As a result, we have strict guidelines about volunteer safety that you agree to follow.
  • You can fit in, go with the flow, and come with a “go getter” attitude, determined to make the best of any situation and give your all.
  • You want to get a sense of what life on the ground is like in an international non-profit organization.
  • You are a team player.
  • You bring maturity, grace, and a belief that young people can change the world!

The Institute is not for you if…

  • You don’t like kids and don’t want to work at a school.
  • You just want to party, or go on a safari.
  • You don’t like structure or group activities.
  • There is a specific project that you want to undertake that is not related to working at a school.

Application Process

Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis, with final applications due April 1st 2011. A complete application includes the application form, your CV/resume, and a letter of recommendation.

Please send one email with your completed application to: Decisions will be made as quickly as possible and may include interviews and additional questions. If you have questions about the program and if it’s right for you don’t hesitate to contact Leah.

Program Costs Approximation

The cost breakdown:

  • All accepted participants are required to undertake their own fundraising to raise a minimum of a $1,000 donation to Shining Hope for Communities. This donation is tax-deductible—see tips on fundraising below!***
  • $787.50 for room & board in Nairobi for 1 month. This includes a dorm-style bedroom, shared bathroom, wireless internet, common area with a TV, transport to/from Kibera everyday, airport pick-up and drop-off, breakfast everyday, dinner Sunday through Thursday, and lunch Saturday and Sunday. (Lunch will be provided at KSG from Monday through Friday).
  • $120 for activities fee, including an all-inclusive day trip to Hell’s Gate – a beautiful national park where you can ride your bike alongside giraffe, zebra, and water buffalo, and hike an ancient gorge.
  • Airfare: cost varies and it is up to you to find the flight option best for you. We encourage you to book early.
  • Volunteers are responsible for dinner on Friday and Saturday evenings – there are many great dining options in Nairobi that we will point out during orientation!
  • Traveler’s Health Insurance: again, cost varies and it is up to you to find the best option for you. We require traveler’s insurance and evacuation insurance.
  • Vaccinations before arrival: cost varies based on your insurance. Please see the most current CDC recommendations for vaccinations in Kenya.
  • Optional Swahili tutoring sessions (approximately $5/hour)
  • Visa to enter Kenya $25
  • Other personal costs are at your discretion

*A $250 deposit towards your fundraising contribution is due at the time of admission to hold your spot.

**You do not need to personally donate the minimum $1,000 contribution! We strongly encourage you to fundraise towards the donation, engaging as many people as possible. Don’t worry— you will reach this goal (and beyond!) quickly if you share with others why you are passionate about Shining Hope.

Also, if you have a community that would be willing to make non-tax-deductible donations they can contribute towards your personal travel costs, and you can keep fundraising to help pay for parts of your Summer Institute experience!

Ideas & Tips for Fundraising $1,000!

  • People can donate directly to Shining Hope for Communities via check or our website. Just make sure they put your name in the “memo” line so that it counts towards your total goal. This is 100% tax deductible.
  • Throw a benefit event at your house, community center, church, synagogue, and/or school! Include a presentation about Shining Hope (which we can help you with, of course), tell people about your volunteer/travel plans, and encourage people to give tax-deductible donations in your honor to count towards your goal.
  • Get creative – for example, performance can help entice guests to come! Think of it this way: if you can find 20 people willing and able to donate 50 dollars each, you will have already reached your goal!
  • Host a series of bake sales on your college and high school campuses! Bake low-cost, delicious goods for a great cause. This helps spread the word about our projects while fundraising towards your goal!

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