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After Unite The People Concert 2012, we spent a significant amount of time reviewing our mission and programs. We made a decision on One Vibe’s ultimate goal, to support youth to realize their full potential. Unite The People Concert will become Unite The People Festival, which will be held every three months, as part of the Arts Mentorship program. In 2013 and 2014, we will refocus our programs to align with our revitalized mission. The Arts Mentorship program will be our primary focus.

Program Objectives

  • Provide a safe space for youth to share experiences, stories, and projects.
  • Give youth a platform to express themselves through music and art.
  • Teach youth to use traditional and modern musical instruments as a means of expression.
  • Give youth alternatives to drugs and violence

Why Arts Mentorship?

At Unite the People Concert 2012, the One Vibe team organized a gathering that brought together young people from the Manyatta slums with musicians who had gathered for the concert.  The results were inspiring to both the youth and to us at One Vibe. Based on the success of this encounter, we decided to engage artists and professionals in Kisumu as mentors to youth from the community. We hope that arts activities will enhance self-expression and give youth a voice to share stories of their aspirations.

Our Instruments of Success

  • Number of youth enrolled and Retention rates
  • Total instruction hours and Unite The People Festival participation
  • Number of youth connected to mentors
  • Improved performances in school

The Issue

Many youth are vulnerable especially when they are not at home or in school. According to The Kenya National Authority for the Campaign Against Alcohol and Drug Abuse (NACADA), alcohol and drug abuse is highest among youth aged 15-29. Besides the introduction to cheap drugs and alcohol at a young age, they are often also exposed to risky sexual activity, gangs, and other negative influences that are common in the slums because of lack of inspiration and necessary support systems.

Some politicians target youth, as they are easy recruits for use in causing terror during political rallies. Once the political campaigns are over, youth who are left as well trained trouble makers return to Manyatta and other slums in the region. Their victims become their own people that live in a densely populated area, with about fifty thousand people per square mile. According to the City Council of Kisumu 75% of the urban population resides in tiny makeshift shacks. 52% of the working population earn $38 per month, and live without running water, electricity, or sewage systems.

These conditions coupled with lack of role models frustrate many youth. The 2012 Rapid Assessment of Drug and Substance abuse by NACADA indicated that the immediate social environment had an important role in influencing drug and substance abuse among youth. The Arts Mentorship program will keep youth engaged in positive activity, and create a bridge between school and home for them. Young Generation Center, an orphanage home in Manyatta that was established in 1997 will host the program, which will be open to youth from Manyatta, and Western region of Kenya.

We will use the model of One Vibe’s Youth Gathering held at Young Generation Center on October 3, 2012. At that event, eight artists from Seattle, Washington, Dar es salaam, Tanzania, Nairobi and Kisumu, Kenya shared personal stories and inspired over 150 youth who attended. Success and great feedback from youth and adults that participated inspired us to make this program accessible to youth every week.

Once youth are inspired and ready to explore their talents and careers, local artists and professionals will mentor them. A counselor from the community will also work alongside the mentors to identify specific individual needs of the youth and psychological support that can be provided. The program will have Painting, Drumming, and Featured Activities. Every three months, Unite The People Festival will be held at Young Generation Center to showcase their skill, growth, and engage the community in the program. Artist’s and Student’s products from the program will be exhibited and sold, and performances by various groups within the program will also be witnessed.


We aim at making the Arts Mentorship program self-sustaining in five years. Proceeds from the sale of the artists’ products will be split on a 50-50 basis between the artists and One Vibe. Products from the program will be exhibited and sold in the US at One Vibe events and on One Vibe’s website. Unite The People Festival, which will be held quarterly and other One Vibe social businesses are part of our plan to sustain the program. We will also collaborate with local tour firms, and companies as partners and sponsors.

How You Can Help

Generous contribution from you allows us to inspire and engage more youth in Kenya. Please support our mission with a Gift to our Arts Mentorship program. You can count on our accountability and promise to ensure that 100% of your gift supports youth that need it the most. Here are other ways that you can help…Read More



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