Beneficiaries come from across Mathare which is one of the biggest slums in Africa. 41% of Mathare’s population is below 25, half of 18-25 year olds are unemployed – part of a poverty cycle that impacts on every aspect of a young person’s life. There is a lack of formal education because of an insufficient number of schools, children as heads of household and prohibitive school costs at 20% of the average household income.
A lack of health services, overcrowding, pollution, lack of water and sanitation lead to high rates of communicable diseases, and 5% of youth is HIV+. These factors all impact on self-esteem, aspirations and work-readiness.
MYSA runs 16 ‘zones’ throughout the slums, allowing them to reach a wide range of youth, including those in most need.