Alleviating poverty

Most Maasai live in extreme poverty, on $0.35 a day. The International Poverty Line, as defined by the World Bank, is at $1.90 per person per day. The consequences of extreme poverty? HUNGER: 90% of the Maasai people’s livestock were killed by starvation in 2009 when a severe drought hit the Amboseli region of Kenya. The Maasai maintain a traditional pastoral lifestyle, depending on their livestock for nutrition and source of income. Because of their reduced livestock, Maasai families and children are almost always hungry now. Many children eat only one meal a day. EDUCATION: Extreme poverty also limits parents' ability to send their children to school. Although Kenya provides free primary public schools, parents still need to cover the costs of school uniforms and supplies. This is out of reach for most Maasai families. Lack of education then reinforces the vicious cycle of poverty and sustains harmful practices like female genital mutilation (FGM), as men and women remain uninformed about its true risks...
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Sponsoring Girls’ Education

School enrollment amongst the Maasai is very low Free primary public schools were introduced in Kenya in 2003 and have had a significant impact on school enrollment at the national level. Amongst the Maasai, however, school enrollment remains low. Less than 20% of Maasai girls enroll in school. Of those who do, less than one in five finish primary school, significantly less go to secondary school, and only a very few make it to university. This drop out rate is exacerbated by the fact that there are no public secondary schools, and private schools are prohibitively expensive for most Maasai families. But why are enrollment rates so low to begin with? And why are drop out rates in primary school so high? Sponsoring a Maasai girl's education changes her life, and her family's Quality private boarding schools provide children with a good education, but at an annual cost of $500, they are out of reach for most Maasai families. Extreme poverty, tradition and gender...
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Results & Impact

Real lives. Real Impact. Real Change. With your generous donations, we have been able to touch and protect the lives of many Maasai children, women and families in Amboseli, Kenya. Thank you. We couldn't have achieved this without you! Testimonials“I promise to work hard and harder to become a role model in my community, because I believe what men can do, women can do even better. I pray that God will keep you and give you good health every day. Thank you so much and I wish and hope to see you one day.”16 year old Meikan Lesaloan, in a letter of thanks to the person who sponsors her education “I thank Coins for Change as it has raised funds to enable me to go through high school level and am now in university. Am now reaching my life-time dreams because of your worthy and abundant help. […] Let me promise Coins for Change team that the seed they have sowed will grow soon and transform the...
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Meet the Leadership Team

Founder and Chief Executive Director Kathleen McIntireIn 2007, the founder of Coins for Change, Kathleen McIntire, sponsored a young Kenyan girl so that she could attend a good boarding school. In 2008, she agreed to help another foundation raise funds by walking 100 kilometers across the Kenyan savanna ending up in a place just under Mt. Kilimanjaro called Amboseli.Each person on the walk had a Maasai Warrior for protection. Kathy's warrior lived in Amboseli and showed her the part of Amboseli that tourists do not see. She found few schools, and very poor and hungry children. She also found a deep-rooted inequality between the sexes that constitutes an extreme form of discrimination against girls and women.Kathleen returned to Amboseli three months later to meet with the Maasai leadership to see how she could help. A Maasai Advisory Board was formed to give her guidance, and Coins for Change was established. Project ManagerLinda SullivanLinda first traveled to Kenya in 2008, where she met Kathy, as she also sponsored the...
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What Sets us Apart

The hopes, dreams, freedom and future of Maasai children are being robbed and sacrificed every day. And it needs to stop. Join us and help us put an end to female genital mutilation (FGM) and early marriage and provide poor marginalized Maasai children with the education, resources and freedom to make a better future for themselves, their families and their communities.   What sets us apart from the rest? By tackling the root causes of FGM and early marriage with solutions that address long term needs while acknowledging immediate critical needs, and by working closely with the Maasai community, we can bring an end to FGM and early marriage, and give Maasai girls real hope and opportunities for a better future. Coins for Change has a Maasai Advisory Board that helps direct our efforts and maximize the impact of our projects and donations Coins for Change established and maintains a very strong relationship and open dialogue with Maasai chiefs in the Amboseli region of Kenya. It is through this...
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Vision and Mission

Our VISION A world in which every Maasai child has the freedom and opportunity to create a better future for themselves.   Our MISSION To rescue poor, marginalized Maasai children in Amboseli, Kenya, by putting an end to female genital mutilation (FGM) and early marriage and providing the children with the education, resources and freedom to make a better future for themselves.   Our APPROACH We are committed to putting an end to female genital mutilation (FGM) and early marriage, but understand that we must work with the Maasai community to effect lasting change. We therefore collaborate closely with the Maasai to generate solutions that are impactful in the short term and create lasting positive change in the long term. We encourage them to preserve their culture and their traditions, but to see the harm in practices like female genital mutilation (FGM) and early marriage, and the social and economic benefits of abandoning them. SaveSave SaveSave SaveSave SaveSave SaveSave SaveSave SaveSave SaveSave SaveSave SaveSave SaveSave SaveSave SaveSave SaveSave SaveSave SaveSave ...
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Contact Us

We're listening! If you would like to get involved, or if you would like to share your story, or hear more about what we do, please reach out to us! Either email us at info@coinsforchange.org or use the Contact form to the right. To make a donation or learn more about how you can help: ...
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Our Work

To rescue Maasai girls from female genital mutilation (FGM) and early marriage, we need to address the three root causes that sustain and drive these harmful practices: extreme poverty, lack of opportunity to get an education, and traditional social norms.   We Have a Solution. And it works. We focus on effective, sustainable programs that produce immediate and long term mission-critical impact. We tackle the three key root causes of female genital mutilation (FGM) and early marriage. We work closely with the Maasai community and have a local advisory board constituted entirely by Maasai. By tackling the root causes of female genital mutilation (FGM) and early marriage with solutions that address long term needs while acknowledging immediate critical needs, and by working closely with the Maasai community, we can bring an end to FGM and early marriage, and give Maasai girls real hope and opportunities for a better future. Our Programs Become a part of something bigger! Help give Maasai girls the opportunity and freedom to gain...
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