Come on a journey to Kenya with me and Ubuntu Made!
Ubuntu Made is a non-profit organization based in Kenya empowering women and providing care for special needs children. The mums of these kids are the makers behind Ubuntu Made products, and their latest project is the Afridrille, an espadrille shoe handmade by the mums in Maai Mahiu, Kenya. As part of the Afridrille Kickstarter, we are offering a unique 8-day trip to Kenya to meet the mums, camp with a Maasai tribe, and experience a safari during the wildebeest migration.
Our trip begins in Nairobi. From there we will head to Maai Mahiu, the community where Ubuntu programs operate. We will meet the maker mums and the kids at Ubuntu’s Special Needs Center, and eat at the Ubuntu Cafe. From there, we will head into the bush where we will camp for two nights for a truly unique experience hosted by Ubuntu Maasai beaders and their families. Our trip to Kenya would not be complete without a safari! We wrap up our adventure together with a two day safari experience on a conservancy that focuses on low-impact tourism and wildlife conservation.
You may never be fully ready for the adventure that awaits you and here at Ubuntu, we like it that way. We encourage you to boldly step out of your comfort zone, leave the maps behind, embrace challenges, engage, listen, interact, and take new paths. It is in this place where gratitude sets in and makes the mundane become beautiful, the ordinary inspirational.
THE HEART OF UBUNTU
Mission: Creating a self-sustaining model for development by using entrepreneurial programs to grow our non-profit initiatives and empower communities to create the change.
Story: After buying a one way ticket to Africa in 2000, Zane Wilemon was struck by the desperation he witnessed while visiting the town of Maai Mahiu. He formed a friendship with local community leader Jeremiah Kuria and this friendship developed into CTC International (now Ubuntu). Ubuntu’s unique approach to community development evolved through Zane and Jeremiah’s day-to-day interactions with locals, forging genuine relationships and becoming a part of the community.
Manifesto: We are misfits for good. Living out of abundance over scarcity. Choosing love over fear, And collaboration over competition. We are igniting the human spirit with the freedom to dream. Our collective dreams serve as an empowered voice that is changing the world.
AVAILABLE DATES: JUNE 29 – JULY 7, 2018
MAXIMUM GROUP SIZE: 10
TRIP COST: $3500
Scroll down to apply!
“Making new friends and life-long connections was the last thing I expected when I applied for the trip, but it’s something that continues to bring me joy daily.” -Lindsay O.
• Opportunity to experience Kenya like no commercial travel agency can offer
• 1 night accommodation in Nairobi
• 2-night Maasai Mara safari during the wildebeest migration
• Accommodation in Maai Mahiu
• Ubuntu Factory Tour: meet the Ubuntu Mums and their amazing, special needs Kids in Maai Mahiu
• Camping with Maasai families
• Internal flights
• Meals throughout the trip (except for in Nairobi)
• Ground transportation and guide fees
WHAT’S NOT INCLUDED
• Airfare to and from the trip. Plan to arrive and depart from Nairobi.
• Travel insurance (I recommend Allianz)
• Gratuities for local guides or drivers. Please plan to bring some extra cash to tip guides.
• Alcoholic beverages and any snacks or extra food
• Any personal items you may need
Day 1: Arrivals | Arrive in Nairobi, rest and recover from your flights. We will have our first meeting all together as a group, setting intentions for the week.
Day 2: Maai Mahiu | Enjoy breakfast in Nairobi before heading to Ubuntu headquarters in Maai Mahiu. Maai Mahiu is a small town sitting at the base of Mount Longonot in the Great Rift Valley. Ubuntu began working in Maai Mahiu over 10 years ago, and is now the largest employer in the town. After getting settled, we will head to a team Swahili meal where you will meet the co-founder of Ubuntu, Jeremiah Kuria.
Day 3: Maai Mahiu | Tour Maai Mahiu and the Ubuntu Programs – stop in to meet the children at the Special Needs Centre and watch the Ubuntu Made mums work their crafting magic! We’ll enjoy Kenyan coffee and delicious meals at Café Ubuntu and end our day with a group discussion about our experience so far.
Day 4: Maasai | Breakfast at Café Ubuntu before spending the day with the Ubuntu Made Maasai beaders in the bush. We will settle in for our first night of camping while being hosted by our generous Maasai families. This is a truly unique experience that cannot be purchased.
Day 5: Maasai| Enjoy a full day with Ubuntu Maasai families and spend another night camping. This is the perfect time to ask questions and learn about the Maasai culture and way of life. Questions for me about ethical travel photography? We’ll cover it.
Day 6: On to safari! | Head back up to Nairobi and jump on a short flight for our safari. We’ll kick it off with a sunset drive with our professional Maasai guides.
Day 7: Safari | Safari! When we’re not out on game drives, join me for optional workshops on wildlife photography and storytelling.
Day 8: Final game drive & Departures | After our morning game drive and coffee, hop back on a quick flight to Nairobi. Ubuntu’s team will escort you to your departure airport, and you can pick up final treasures in between.
APPLY FOR A SPOT
Sound like this trip is for you? Fill out the application below and someone from my team will reach out to you shortly to make sure it’s a great fit!
I’m nervous to come alone!
This is an intimate group of like-hearted travelers. Most people are a combination of nervous and excited before a trip like this! If you are drawn to this trip, do not let fear stop you from signing up. I am always available to talk through your questions or concerns.
What is the camping with the Maasai like?
If you have ever gone car camping in the desert, it’s like that. We will not have running water, and will need to pack in everything needed for our stay, including tents, sleeping bags and sleeping pads.
What is the food like?
Besides traditional Swahili food, your team will dine at Café Ubuntu. Ubuntu staff focuses on creating versatile menus for teams and sources only the best ingredients. The café boasts a variety of delicious meals from pizzas to vegetables straight out of the garden. Note: We are happy to accommodate your dietary requirements!
Is this a photography workshop?
Not in the traditional sense, but I will be holding discussions and sessions around the topics of authentic storytelling, ethics of travel photography, and technical tips for wildlife photography. Of course, this is the perfect opportunity to ask me questions one-on-one.
What is the age group?
We welcome all ages!
What is the accommodation like?
In Nairobi and on safari, we’ll be staying in comfortable (even luxury) accommodation. While in Maai Mahiu, our hotel is quite humble! We’ll help you navigate the quirks on the first night.
How can I charge my stuff?
Please bring your own travel adapter for Kenya. Read instructions on any appliances that you plug in to
avoid blow outs. Kenya uses “Type G” British BS 1363, 220-240 V (US is 110-120 V)
Will we have wifi?
Our hotel in Nairobi will offer free wifi. There will also be access to wireless throughout the trip, but it may be spotty at times. We will have no wifi access while out camping with the Maasai.
A non-refundable $500 deposit is due at the time of registration. We can sometimes hold spots for a few days, but the deposit is the only thing that officially secures your spot! Full trip cost is due 60 days before the trip start date. Cancellation timeline is as follows:
- Cancel more than 60 days before the start of the trip: full refund except $500 deposit
- Cancel less than 60 days before the start of the trip: no refund unless we can fill your spot, then full refund except $500 deposit
Please inquire about payment plans.
See you out there!