There is strength in this new world that I call home. A quiet strength I hadn’t anticipated, a strength that I needed to know existed. Slowly, incrementally it is revealing itself to me.

I’d traveled through many African nations. I had lived in Tanzania for six months after college, before I broke my leg for the second time. However, I’d never seen strength worn with such nobility until Daraja Academy introduced herself to me. The reasoning behind this, I think, has less to do with Daraja Academy than the remarkable human beings that have been selected to attend the school.

As finals wrapped up and end of the year parties were thrown, a cloud passed over the school. News trickled in concerning a family member of one of Daraja’s brightest stars. Without naming names, a beautiful leader of the campus, sponsored by three incredible Marin County sisters and their giving circle, found out her 20 year old brother had just passed away, a victim of pneumonia.

The tragedy is compounded by the fact that this young lady lost her mother to a headache (most likely meningitis) three years ago, and her father last year when he was struck by a vehicle on a busy Kenyan highway. In three years she has gone from being the second youngest in a family of five… to the family’s 15-year-old matriarch. Other than an aunt and an elderly grand mother, it is a family of her and her 10-year-old little brother.

What a downer. Why share this on the Daraja Academy BLOG?

As we try to define what the Daraja Academy BLOG is, I can honestly say that I may be wrong to share this, but the fact of the matter is… this is real. Life isn’t always smiles and songs and frankly, it shows just how strong and amazing these girls are. It shows the sort of obstacles that Jenni and I, the Carr Educational Foundation board and all of Daraja’s supporters face. This is not a bubble gum charity… which is why our succ