An Interview with Jomba Baraza on His Journey from the streets of Nairobi to the National Youth Service (NYS)

Jomba was born and raised in Mlango Kubwa area within Mathare slums. He was rescued and rehabilitated into the ABC sponsored Program in Mathare where he received his education and all rounded welfare support. Here is a conversation he had at MCE while on a break from National Youth Service, a government sponsored training program for young people to develop their technical skills before going to college

  1. Why were you in the streets? And for how long?

Before ABC life at home was very difficult and as soon as we were of age, my siblings and I went to the streets of Nairobi as beggars since both our parents had no job. My parents could not cater for our school fees, the house condition was unsuitable and the little they could get from would not be able to sustain all of us. I remember very well, it was back in the year 2002 when I was first introduced to the streets of Nairobi, where I found other street kids like me that had been brought there due to their own problems. I was a street boy for a span of five good years.

From right to left, Jomba with his friends during his days at Mathare Children Education

2. Where would you be if you had not been joined the program?

Life would have been very hard if I were to continue living there, as it was miserable, shameful and lonely.  Most of the kids I grew up with went to school while I was in the streets begging and maybe I would be dead because being there makes you indulge in hard drugs and engage in criminal activities for survival. During this time I felt rejected and abandoned by the community around me.

    3. How has ABC Iceland changed your life?

ABC Iceland has contributed immensely to my wellbeing and success. Before I joined the program I had no hopes and ambition for my future and I could not imagine going to school, as my main priority was survival. The ABC school in Mathare took me away from the streets of Nairobi, while I was very young, back in 2007. I joined ABC and started schooling in class two where I was taught how to read and write in both. I have also been fed, clothed and given care and protection as part of being housed (board) within the institution. My life has really changed positively since then; In 2013 I sat for my K.C.P.E and managed to join High school.  I had to work hard to do well in school, even though I struggled with academics, I knew in my heart that my life and future would change for the better. In 2017 I sat for my final High school exams.


  1. What are you currently doing? What level?

When I finished high school I joined the National Youth Service whose main function is to catalyze transformative Youth Empowerment in Kenya. Its mandate is to mold the Youths in the country into a pool of organized and responsible citizens for National Development through training and responsible participation in social economic activity.

Jomba donning the NYS uniform during a matching display ceremony.
  1. What are your current life dreams/what do want to do for the world and for our self

I want to become a successful businessman, with strong desire to help those in need.  I plan on building strong relationships between me and the community around me. My life experience has taught me to be realistic, responsible and to positively impact the community. My mission is to let the world know and learn the benefits of change and start to see the alternatives to unsafe behavior and acknowledge God. To make the world a better place, to create a good relationship between the rich and the Poor, since God created us all.

Mathare children Education (MCE) is to holistically develop motivated and innovative children through quality education to improve their lives and impact communities.  Support  Mathare Children Education to continue doing a good work to of alleviating poverty through Education for children