Getting an education against the odds

Despite facing many barriers in her life, Kavindu is determined to get an education with the help of a Plan International Kenya bursary.

Kavindu, 21 is the sixth and last child of a single mother earning her living as a farmer. Below she shares her story about how she has overcome many barriers to get an education:

“I did my national primary examination in 2010 and though I performed well I did not go to secondary school due to financial constraints. I spent an entire year out of school. 

“Though my mother would give me hope that she would take my siblings and I back to school one day, it looked so hard considering what we were going through.

“One day a community volunteer visited our home and brought some school bursary forms from Plan International. She urged me to fill and return the forms. 


“Soon after, I was informed that my application was successful and I was overjoyed to receive the good news.  

“I was able to go to school that had all the necessary infrastructure for quality education compared to the day school I was attending before. I was very excited to be in school again where I worked very hard. Sadly, while on the long December holidays, things changed for me.

I was very excited to be in school again.

Kavindu (centre) has faced many challenges to get an education
Kavindu (centre) has faced many challenges to get an education.

“I returned to school in form 4 but during the second term I was sent home after the school administration noticed I was pregnant. I was confused since I wanted to do the national exams. When I remembered how difficult my education journey had been, I did not know who to talk to. 

“In that period of confusion I opted to join the man who made me pregnant and he took me to his mother’s home. It did not take long before I had Plan International staff visiting me to find out why I was missing school.


“I was afraid when I saw them but they embraced me and were eager to know what was happening. They asked me if I would like to continue with my education and sit the national exams. They also arranged with the school principal for me to sit the exams.  

“I recognised that I would have done better had I been more careful. However, I will not allow my past to determine my future. I am grateful for Plan International for what they have done for me. I will gather myself up and join a college.”

Plan International Kenya works towards equality for girls. We run various projects on girls’ empowerment such as Girls Advocacy Alliance, Safer Cities for Girls, Ending Child Marriage, Yes I Do and Obligation to Protect.

More than 600 girls are currently supported to access education under the sponsorship programme