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Ford Foundation urges youth to believe in their ability to improve livelihoods

Ford Foundation has urged Kenyan youths to believe in their ability to improve their living standards. Speaking on Thursday during a public lecture at the University of Nairobi, Ford Foundation president Darren Walker said the greatest asset Kenya has is human capital and not natural resources.

He urged those in positions of influence and the private sector to ensure they provide an environment that supports the poor and vulnerable, who cannot afford the basic necessities of life such as education.

Walker said there is need to build institutions and invest in ideas and people to better the society, adding that the growing inequality witnessed in the region is one of the challenges of democracies.

He urged individuals in positions of power to create a mobility escalator, which can help those who have been born into poverty to harness their full potential. Walker said the people must be able to engage the Government in anything they do.

“We must have an effective and responsive society in order to improve delivery service to the people,” he said, adding that development was good as long as it was equitable. He said no strong democracy can exist without a strong civil society, adding that investing in civil society was critical for its growth.

Maurice Makoloo, Ford regional director, announced a Sh 40.7 million grant to the University of Nairobi, for empowering the vulnerable in the society. He said the organisation is ready to work with all stakeholders to bridge the inequality gap in the country.

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