In the African country of Kenya, not far from its capital city Nairobi, the Kibera Slum is said to be Africa’s largest slum.
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Many residents of the slum live without running water, electricity and other basic services. But a young man by the name of Kennedy Odede, a former resident of Kibera, has the chance to enjoy much more. Last weekend, Odede earned a degree from Wesleyan University.
Odede delivered the “Senior Class Welcome” to his graduating class and shared his incredible journey from the slums to collegiate glory, all while remaining humble and hardworking. He reminded students that his upbringing did not hamper his ambitions and that his mother’s love and devotion sustained his resolve to earn a college degree. Odede recalled a story about his mother saving $3 dollars over a course of months to enroll him into a proper school. Unknown to her, the school fees were $10 dollars, crushing Kennedy’s dreams.
WATCH Odede Talk About His Work In The Kibera Slum
“When we reached the school, I was smiling from ear to ear, so excited about the bright future ahead,” shared Odede in his speech. “The principal told us that while they did have open spaces, the school fees were $10 per year—not $3. My mom, a woman of great pride, begged and pleaded but had no luck.”