Helping Hands

KenSAP (Kenya Scholar Access Program) is a US and Canadian registered charity and one of Africa’s most prestigious college ­access programs. In 16 years it has helped 218  gifted, low-income Kenyan students prepare for and earn admission to North America’s most selective universities, including Harvard, Princeton, Yale, MIT, and Stanford—all with full financial aid.

218
ADMISSIONS
Harvard (23), Yale (14), Princeton (13), U. Penn (12), Brown (10), Amherst (9), Dartmouth (6), MIT (5), Stanford (5)

KenSAP’s initial aim was simply to extend access to world-class university education to a few students of the Kalenjin tribe in Kenya’s Rift Valley, where such opportunities had scarcely existed. As the program’s students began to achieve success at their distinguished institutions, however, it became clear that KenSAP was helping to develop the future intellectual leadership not only of its students’ communities, but also of Kenya. Indeed, since KenSAP began to make its mark, at least three new programs, such as Equity Foundation’s Wings to Fly, have sprung up in Kenya doing similar sort of work. KenSAP’s aim has therefore grown: its students are pledged to use their education for the benefit of Kenyans and to contribute to Kenya’s development in ways commensurate with the quality of their education.

97%
GRADUATION
Which is higher than the graduation rates of any Ivy league college. This record is all the more remarkable in view of the students’ disadvantaged backgrounds

Charles Field-Marsham learned of KenSAP in 2005, a year after it was piloted by founders John Manners, a retired American journalist, and Mike Boit, a Kenyan professor at Kenyatta University and former Olympian runner. Immediately impressed by the program’s vision and enthusiastic about the opportunity to support Kenya’s most promising students, he offered KenSAP the financial and management backing to implement it into a full-scale program and expand its reach. For the first 10 years of Charles’ involvement, Charles’ Rift Valley based Kenya Fluorspar Company mine and the Field-Marsham Foundation funded roughly 90% of KenSAP’s budget. This assistance has enabled the program to conduct two extended residential training sessions for each new group of college candidates, pay for students’ test and application fees, and provide various forms of support to successful candidates once they reach North America.

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KenSAP has shaped who I am and is still shaping who I’m going to become

Mohammed Habib Shatry, Yale ‘18
$50
Million In Aid
KenSAP has generated over $50 million in educational aid for Kenya (figuring an average of about $60,000 in financial aid per student per year) since its founding in 2004

With a mission to see KenSAP continue to grow and become a truly sustainable program, Charles has gradually reduced his side of funding and encouraged a variety of supporters and the students themselves (both current and alumni) to invest in KenSAP’s future. Charles continues to provide management support and serves as the chair of KenSAP’s board of members. Rita has also recently joined as board director. The foundation remains unrelenting in its efforts to support KenSAP’s gifted students so they can receive a world-class education and transform lives, families, and communities.

Coming together

Visit kensap.org to learn more about the program.

KenSAP is an exempt organization as described in Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. Our EIN is 26-2840749. Copyright (c) 2019 Code2040, all rights reserved.