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Palm Beach County teacher creates school to educate students in Kenya

Nonprofit building connections between Florida, Africa
Kijana Global Innovation School
Posted at 4:33 PM, Jun 11, 2021
and last updated 2021-06-11 18:04:47-04

PALM BEACH GARDENS, Fla. — A Palm Beach County teacher is helping to expand the educational system in western Kenya in a unique cross-cultural collaboration.

The teacher's nonprofit is helping to create the next generation helping to change the world.

Inside Palm Beach Gardens Community High School, Ebby Shiroya of Kenya is on a tour of opportunity.

“When I was brought up, we didn't have anything much. We just used to read from the blackboard and that was it," Shiroya said.

She has lived most of her life in a small village in western Kenya.

"During our days, we would learn to read and write in grade six or seven," Shiroya said.

But Shiroya didn't travel thousands of miles to talk about the past. She's in Palm Beach County for the future.

Kijana Global Innovation School
The Kijana Global Innovation School educates students in western Kenya.

"At the moment, I'm the project manager for Kijana," Shiroya said.

The program is called Kjjana Global Innovation School. Palm Beach County resident and teacher Jim Cummings is the founder.

"It’s just beautiful. We've got contemporary art. We've got a collaborative mural project and our next step is to build a library and media center," Cummings said.

The school currently serves more than 100 Kenyan students from ages 5 to 12.

Cummings and Shiroya are using this school's media center as their model and working to raise money for the expansion.

"Students are excited, I've brought students from Florida to Africa on multiple separate trips," Cummings said.

Shiroya said their goal is to introduce their students to what the world has to offer.

"We need to build these connections if we want to build a better global society," Cummings said.