We are committed to building positive futures for every child who starts their life in a Kenyan prison.
We will do this by ensuring they have access to nutritious food; comfortable shoes, clothes and diapers; as well as school scholarships and support as they grow.
So they can lead a life of hope and strength and be able to fulfil their dreams one day.
What started in 2018, as a volunteer’s experience with death row inmates in Kenya, has become a vehicle of hope for the children of women imprisoned alongside them.
Arooj was born in Kenya and grew up in a single-parent home, where her mother always taught her the importance of education and dreaming big.
She studied law in Malaysia and Cardiff, and then went on to pursue the Bar in England & Wales after receiving a full scholarship from one of the prestigious Inns of Court. She is now a trainee solicitor with Clifford Chance LLP, one of the top ten law firms in the world.
Ever since her first contact with Kenya’s prisons, Arooj has been raising money and support for prisoners – from law books to sanitary towels – which have made a huge impact on the lives of those she’s worked with.
However, it was during one visit that she saw a mother breastfeeding her baby in a tiny, crowded cell, which moved her to set up the Beyond Kenyan Bars charity to provide practical hope and future opportunities for the children she saw there, and many like them.
Where we are
We’re working with one child at a time to provide daily meals, warm clothing and new shoes, and essential childcare items.
We’re bringing hope into one prison at a time, establishing the regular provision of food and clothing for every child under four, and raising awareness of the broader challenges.
Where we're heading
We’re looking at the best practices for supporting these children as they start life in prison and when they leave, including school scholarships.
We’re scaling up the sustainable provision of food and clothing for each child under four, across every prison in Kenya: that’s 18 women’s prisons with approximately 300* children.
*this number fluctuates as children come in and leave the prison for various reasons. For example:
(i) the child’s mother is found not guilty, as women are held there on remand;
(ii) the mother’s sentence finishes;
(iii) the mother is released on bail; or
(iv) the child turns four and goes to the mother’s next of kin or a children’s home.
Together we can help
You can make a difference to these children today and build a brighter future for their tomorrow.
Once we achieve our goal of supporting 18 prisons,
we will begin working towards investment in school scholarships and further support as these children grow.
“It is easier to build strong children than
to repair broken men.”