By now you will have received an email from Amy Johnson updating you on the clean 2017 audit received by our sister organization in Kenya, Ngong Road Children Association. After discovering theft of resources in the 2015 audit, we have devoted considerable energy to reinvigorating financial controls and improving processes. I am very pleased Crowe Horwath has endorsed those efforts as having been effective by granting this clean audit.
I recently took an online course hosted by the Wharton School entitled “Corruption”. It has been proven that corruption can be significantly reduced by organizations through a combination of ethical leadership, active management/supervision and appropriate risk management processes. We will continue to discuss other best practices that would fit our circumstances and help us remain vigilant about this risk.
Friends of Ngong Road completed our last strategic planning process in 2015 and we are working throughout 2018 to tackle important strategic questions to revisit that process. Our expectation is to have a three-year strategic plan completed by the end of 2018 for 2019 – 2021. Here are just a few of the issues we are tackling:
- Karibu Loo has been profitable in the first four months of 2018 and is on target to provide $10,000 or more to Ngong Road Children Association this year, reducing funds we must raise in the U.S. to support the program. We are in discussion about how much and in what way Friends of Ngong Road should support Karibu Loo as it grows and becomes a contributor to the program’s funding needs.
- Succession is on our minds. I have communicated to the board that I expect to move into an emeritus status during this 3-year planning horizon. We have to decide how we are going to make that transition which raises issues about board composition, staffing, etc. And, we have several long-tenure board members who will also be transitioning in the coming years. Finding their successors is a high priority.
- Sponsor growth is another important topic to discuss. Our model for sponsor recruitment has been “friends and family”, however we are all running out of friends. What model for sponsor recruitment will be effective in the future?
- How much should we grow? If Karibu Loo can provide a significant contribution to the organization, and we have a healthy endowment fund, how much should we grow?
I look forward to sending you an update on our 2019 -2021 strategic plan at the end of the year.
In the meantime, we are excited to welcome Judy Nyaga to Minneapolis on May 14 and 15 and Kelvin Thuku the first half of June. Judy is a board member in Kenya and Kelvin is the Program and Technology Coordinator. We will host gatherings and meetings during their time in the Twin Cities and hope you will have the opportunity to meet these people who do so much to support student success in Nairobi.
President and Founder
Friends of Ngong Road