Thursday, December 15, 2011

Do you Care!

The year 2011 has been an inspiring year not only for me but for others around me, through our interventions to inspire and motivate the youth is different forums, class session and sports activity in the community. I hope come next year we shall spread the knowledge, skills, creativity etc to greater height.

I did one session in class about caring and today I’m honored to receive this email from one of my student and I would like to share with you.

Received from Elizabath Atieno Media lab student 2011 at Nairobits trust.

Do you Care
Where are the days that people cared?
Where are the days that people shared?
Where are the days that fear was not part of life?
Where are the days that love and peace ruled?

Where is the land where people care?
Where is the land that care is alive?
So that I can fly to that land,
And grab the care, and spread it to the whole world?

Do you care whether someone cares to be their brother’s keeper?
To save the lives of people dying of hunger?
To save the lives of people dying from road accidents?
From AIDS, from cancer, and from insecurity?

Do you care when your neighbor is suffering?
And do you care when the unborn are aborted?
Do you really care?

I long for a people who care
Can someone tell me where they dwell?
So that I can go and join them
And live with them a life full of love, peace and joy.
Yes I know what to do
I won’t go and I won’t join them
I’m gonna be the care
And I hope that the people around me will soon care
Because I have the potential to inspire them.

(Composed and written by Eligo)

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

What do you know of 1st December?

1st December is World AIDS Day, an annual international event to raise awareness about HIV and the people it affects.

It is a day that different organizations,government institutions, individuals, private sector etc address and highlight issues to do with HIV/AIDS campaign with the major objective being;

1. Raising awareness and funds to support those living with HIV in our communities.
2. Promoting sexual health messages to those at risk of HIV and STIs.
3. Raising awareness generally about HIV. etc

And so on...

As a creative person in the field of digital arts today I got some few hours to utilize my creative moment, and what came to my mind was to design a poster and make a contribution to the ongoing campaigns on digital and print media.

The result was a poster designed using Photoshop and Illustrator which I hereby share with you.


So what is your contribution towards a zero HIV/AIDS society?

Check out this links and more online;

  • http://www.worldaidscampaign.org/
  • http://www.worldaidscampaign.org/2011/11/unaids-world-aids-day-report-2011/

Thursday, November 24, 2011

TRANSLATING “Idle hours” into Creative moments

In our daily schedules we get to operate machines, teach, interact, eat, sleep, play etc; this and many more are activities that finds their place in our to-do list, some are a routine and others are influenced by other factors. This is what I call “idle hours” which you need to translate into creative moments. Imagine even pilots and accountants have the desire of doing something new after long hours of service which can be either taking vacations, family holiday, swimming, jogging, volunteering at a camp etc; though this options can’t fit in a single box because it’s a personal choice on what to do with your available time.

What we can’t escape from is that moment you have 'nothing' to do, and as the old adage says “an idle mind is a devils workshop” so don’t fall as a victim. Don’t be cheated that there are people who are busy 24 hours /7 days, even during creation time God took rest, and at least you can get a hour or two to reflect or try something new.

Below I share some of my personal tips that can be used to make hours of ‘idling’ into creative process;
  1. Develop interest of something new for example if you like football one day watch basketball.
  2. You don’t have to be a great artist to draw or paint. Play with colors and think of an artwork to draw for your family, spouse etc.
  3. Use available materials to create some drawing for example with a stick on sand. See examples below
  4. Read a book, magazine or newspapers.
  5. Write an article for your blog if you have one or website on subjects that you like.
  6. Use the internet for edutainment, learning, socializing etc.
  7. Be an experimental photographer.
  8. Try cooking your favorite dish.
  9. Watch a movie with a friend.
  10. Do some exercise with a group this will help boost your self esteem and teamwork spirit.
  11. Go for a walk, swim or even sleep. And many more…

Note:
The most import thing that you need not to forget is to note (on a book or diary) the ideas as they pop in your mind. This is what has made me capture my creative moments and that is why I’m glad to share this personal moments. Everyone will have their own way of finding and experiencing creative moments but if you like this approach crown it.

Picture by Wilsenx: theme: What’s above your head…take a photo!
“Ideas come from different spheres of life when you don’t expect them” Wilsenx

Drawings by Wilsenx: Use different medium to express yourself…

Drawings by Wilsenx

Use fonts, shapes, texture, line and color to express your ideas (apply the elements and principle of design in you composition)

Monday, November 21, 2011

Trip to Musoma Tanzania 31st October to 12th November 2011.

Musoma is located on the shores of Lake Victoria in northern part of Tanzania neighboring Kenya along the borders of Lake Victoria. I enjoyed the food, culture and the hospitality offered to me during my stay in Musoma. The most fascinating of all, is the climatic condition experienced with cool breeze on a hot sunny weather and vibrant activities in the main market. I usually try to visit the market of any place that I visit around the world not only to buy food but to source inspiration and learn especially on colors, language etc. That is why I love the old adage that says; “In every market there’s a mad man” though I use it as a positive reference in my learning expedition.

On my mission courtesy of Nairobits Trust was to train at the Musoma information center run by Nairobits in partnership with Terre des Hommes who are the main donors. The centre trains youth in life skills, entrepreneurship and ICT skills that shall enable them improve their lives either in the formal or informal sector. The centre in hosted in Musoma dioceses (Matumaini katika vijana centre).

Subjects that I taught during the two weeks visits are;

  • Design in general with a focus on web and creativity.
  • Technical aspect of the web e.g. CSS and DIV’s.
  • Motivation sessions, just to mention but a few…

Below are snapshot pictures of my trip courtesy of Nairobits Trust;

Warm up games: Unity and great teamwork

Tips and tricks: Start on paper before heading to the computers...

Motivational talk and discussions

Giving lectures on the technical side of the web

Students demonstrations

Thursday, November 10, 2011

The raising poet from the heart of Mathare slums

NAIROBITS acrostic poem by; Kebane Victor ( NairoBits student)

NairoBits is a Digital Design School that provides education to the Nairobi slum youth. They put digital tools of expression in the hands of the youth who have the creativity but not the means to express themselves. These youth in turn act as multipliers to the organization that they partner with. For more please check; www.nairobits.com

No comparison can match the positive change in our lifestyles now

Amid the challenges we face, we have with us ICT multimedia skills

It was a dream back then, a seed of the digital design school was planted back then.

Reality it is now, a number of our peers are making it big through the now grown plant

Onwards, onwards we soldier on, the impact is felt when we are in the field.

Bits by bits we execute the creative skills, translating to positive contributions for a balanced society

In our hands, the digital tools of expression we get rank second to none, thank you we say softly

To multiply the skills to the community we learn at the school, we do it wholeheartedly

So many are benefits one gets from the school, we wish the institution nothing but success.

I'm proud to be associated with the NairoBits family. Wilsenx initiative highlights exceptional talents in the community be it in sports, drawing , painting etc; whereby we provide platforms for the youth to express their talents and make contribution to a better world. Victor Kabane is one of the many great artists that you find in the heart of Mathare slums using their skills and talents to make both ends meet.

Continue writing brother...

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Financial literacy

Financial literacy is the ability to understand finance. More specifically, it refers to the set of skills and knowledge that allows an individual to make informed and effective decisions through their understanding of finances. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Financial_literacy
Many youth are yet to learn about financial literacy as one of the basic skills set they ought to have for their survival in this harsh economic times.

How much money is enough? There is a saying that says “The more you get, the more you spend and the more cash you want” anonymous. Living in a society of different personalities and traits, the youth are at the danger of being pressured to believe that; if you get the first salary after searching for that dream job for many years, you should always reward yourself immensely to the extent of forgetting the past. If you haven’t heard about it what about; ‘enjoy your youth to the fullest, life is short’! This and many others are myths which spread around like a ‘burning bush’ in many neighborhoods where you find most of the youth chatting about it at their ‘base’. Looking at the other flip side of the coin, all this calls to action banners can be interpreted differently especially when finances are involved combined with your character type which might lead to a habit that might be hard to stop.

I like this phrase on my myths list “Ujachanuka!” meaning you aren’t up to date with either the current style or trends. This is a slang which is the most popular language being spoken in the neighborhood especially in the informal settlements. Youths please don’t be cheated, I know the phrase can be used in many contexts but for finances you have to be steadfast with your plans if you want to succeed in future.

I would like to share some of my list in the financial literacy ‘drop-box’. This are financial lessons you can keep with you all the time either employed or not. “You don’t have to be a certified accountant to know how spend and save money for future”. Wilson Masaka

Financial literacy - ‘drop-box’;
  • Always make budgets; before going for a major shopping.
  • Know your cash flow; don’t spend more than you get.
  • Explore different saving plans; avoid mattress accounts and open an account with a reputable institution.
  • Plan without money; so when you get the money you aren’t overwhelmed with situations, rather you execute your plans.
  • Study the market; Different streets in town have their own business trends and that includes price tags for the same commodities that your might get cheaper on other streets. Don’t compromise price for quality.
  • Keep friends who can give financial advice like how to invest etc.
  • Review you financial plans every once in a while. I would advise you to review your plans at the start and end of the each month.
  • Read literature, articles, blogs etc that involves finances.
  • Learn from your past experience; How you were doing financially versus the current status.
  • Develop a habit of saving for the future; In your monthly budget take a realistic percentage to the saving plan.
  • Have an ongoing project that will keep you focused on saving for project development.
  • Match your skills, dreams with the finances; ask yourself if the skill set acquired is enough to keep you earning more and more.
  • Keep books of accounts for your expenditure, income, saving etc; on a daily basis. You can start with a simple book keeping computer program like excel, quicken or Quick books, book and pen. It all depends with your skill set to choose the appropriate method or platform, though you can’t miss to have either of the mentioned tools despite your occupation.
  • Don’t develop habits that will lead to spending sprees; like every Friday out with friends having parties and social meetings etc. Make sure every meeting has some objectivity and plan for it financially and this is for example choosing the appropriate restaurant which you are comfortable with. You won’t be checking the bill every second a drink is served, knowing the place prior to your meeting saves all the anxiety of over spending.

Monday, September 26, 2011

CHRISC KENYA LEADERS CAMP

It was a great honor to be part of the participants during the Chrisc (Christian Sports Contact) leader’s camp which took place in Clarence Matheny leadership and training institute in Rongai from 21st to 24th September, 2011.

The participants came from Rwanda, Kenya (Nairobi, Voi and Eldoret), Uganda and Tanzania where Chirsc has got its roots with set up like Chrisc-Rwanda , Chrisc-Tanzania and Chrisc-Uganda.

CHRISC International is a large youth organization operating in four countries in the region of East Africa, namely Tanzania, Kenya, Uganda and Rwanda. CHRISC works in cooperation with local communities, schools and organizations to provide sporting opportunities for youths in both rural and urban setting. The sports activities are connected to a strong development focus, based on leadership capacity building, health and awareness programs and social projects. For more information kindly visit Website; www.chrisckenya.org

The theme of the 3 days camp was; Play, Joy and learn. I had an opportunity to share my experiences in leadership and innovation through a motivational session which lasted for at least 45minutes on the first day.

The greats of all, I was able to learn from other people as well, for example from the passionate team in Chrisc Kenya who organized the camp to every single participant of different background, age and creed. The camp was well organized and the three pillars (Play, Joy and Learn) of the camp were all met successfully and creatively.

I would urge youth organization to emulate this ventures which enable youth to think critically about their life by giving them valuable skills and knowledge on how they can improve other people lives especially by offering good leadership and mentor-ship from the grass root level.

This is a summary of topics and activities that took place;

  • Sporting activities.
  • Games and life skills.
  • Leadership and volunteering seminar
  • Local mobilization seminar.
  • Children protection seminar etc.

Below are pictorials as the saying goes “Pictures speaks louder than words”


Big auditorium for sessions

From Left Emma, Mary and Wilson

From a distance Wilson giving lectures

Part of the team group photo after session with May from Stromme foundation

THE CAMPS THEME: PLAY, JOY AND LEARN

Play

Football in action!

Warm up games

Volley ball in action!

Start of session instruction given...

Joy


Morning devotion praise and worship.

Dj Marto in control...

Learn

Session in progress


Question answers session during forums


Group discussion

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Mashairi Mtaani

Today I would like to dedicate my acknowledgements to one great champ by the name Victor Kabane who resides in Eastlands in Nairobi. Victor has the love and passion for poetry, I like his profile when he says; "I use my words to best describe that which is ethical to share to the rest of the world. I never calculate my words, i like it when i say it all..." I was inspired with is creativity after listening to one of his poems at a graduation ceremony last month. So for more about him check http://mywordsinblood.blogspot.com/

Kiswahili poem by Victor Kabane. Revieved via e-mail

SAFARI

Safari tuliianza, mwishoni hatujafika
Hivi sasa twajikaza, safari itakamilika
Wazazi twawapongeza, kutuelimisha mumewajibika
Ni mbali tulikotoka, safari tutaikamilisha

Wazazi manyumbani, nidhamu tumepata
Waalimu shuleni, elimu mwatupa
Wahubiri makanisani, kumcha Mungu mwatufunza
Ni mbali tulikotoka, safari tutaikamilisha

Sana twawashukuru, kwa kutuongoza safarini
Sisi mumetunusuru, hatujaingia taabani
Maulana hatutozi ushuru, kwenye safari yu uongozini
Ni mbali tulikotoka, safari tutaikamilisha

Leo hii twafurahia, maneno haya twayazungumzia
Ni ya kweli twawaambia, yote hayo mmeyasikia
Maneno hayajatuishia, ni mengi tungewaambia
Ni mbali tulikotoka, safari tutaikamilisha

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Unknown heroes

Change starts with you…

Everybody has a story to tell and all the challenges that befall on us, build a person to be stronger and better in life. Living in the slums hasn’t been so exciting, for example there is a lot that is left undesired like open sewage engulfing the air, unstructured houses with dilapidated roads that ‘snakes’ its way to a maze of shanty busy narrow streets full of businesses, just to mention but a few. Notably there has been progress in some areas but a lot still needs to be done and everything happens for a reason. There is always two sides of the coin in a story, hence it depends with how you want to view your surroundings and relate to the stories that meander across the streets.

On the other hand there are two ways to view a half-empty cookie jar: "half-empty" or "half-full." Today I want to share with you great story that is untold but it is right at our door steps from the heart of one of the biggest slums in Nairobi. Something I love about the slums is the zealous and joyful people and talents you find in the slums from musician, great footballers, lawyers, designers etc. It is very unfortunate that some of the talents and youth potential are not recognized from the slum areas and the hope of succeeding looks like a fainting lamp that doesn’t have paraffin. I would urge the youth to be pro-activate in lighting up their candles that would help them see through the dark tunnels of opportunities and challenges. Don’t despairs or have faint hearts thus remember you have to be very determined in whatever you do either in sport, academics etc; just know that nothing will come on a silver platter either you are a boy or a girl.
There is this story of one girl who has beaten all odds to educate herself through participating in community development while she uses her sporting talent in football to reach her stars. Kenya is well known in athletics and we performed exceptionally well in the just concluded IAAF world champions in Daegu in South Korea whereby Kenya was well represented by both men and women.

Our national team Harambee stars also made us proud by winning 2-1 to Guinea Bissau with much anticipation hangs in the balance to qualify for African cup of nation if only they can win against Uganda and Angola, though a bit of mathematics need s to be done, I don’t want to sound like a pessimist but I’m very positive that anything can happen in a game of football.
On the other flipside of the story from the slums of Mathare lives this unsung hero who comes from a humble background trying to make both ends meet through using her talent in football which in a man’s dominated sport in Kenya, though some women’s initiatives has been seen coming up buts still not enough to make our Kenya women footballers turn professional.

Kate Syprine aka Blacdiva born on 26th November 1991, lives with her family of eight children in Mathare slum and from a tender age she loved football with passion which she acquired from her family linage whereby her father used to play football , and currently two of her sisters Evaline Akida and Esther Mazira are both playing football and her brother Kamuzi Banda who has featured in Mathare united youth teams and also AFC leopard a premier league club in Kenya still plays football after coming from a career threatening injury while playing football match 2 years back.

Defeating all odds Kate Syprine has shaped her life and career path through sports despite many obstacles that surrounds the girls child in sprawling slum of Mathare which poses challenges like early pregnancy, lack of opportunities, drug abuse just to mention but a few. Currently she is the Mathare united women football team captain whereby she helped her team clinch the 2011 Sakata ball challenge cup winning a trophy and other rewards.
Thanks to Safaricom for supporting young talents in sports especially through their Sakata ball initiative (http://www.safaricom.co.ke/sakataball).

Part of Kate Syprine aka Blacdiva other achievement has been as follows;

Player profile.

Position: Central defender
Football Icon: Rio Ferdinand (Manchester united)
Best book: An enemy of the people
Best quote: Aspire to inspire before you expire.
Community club MYSA zonal: Otto- Benecker F.C
Former school: Maina Wanjigi Secondary school since 2006 - 2010
Current professional club: Mathare United women team

Special achievements

• 2011 Champions Safaricom Sakata ball challenge tournament and current team captain
• 2010 Champions Women’s Kenya premier league
• 2007 Champions MYSA U16 championship
• 2007 Champions MYSA girls tournament
• 2006 Champions MYSA girls tournament
• 2005 First runners up Barclay girl’s tournaments.
• 2004 Champions MYSA girls tournament
International achievements

• 2007 first runners –up MYSA international girls tournament
• 2005 Finalist Norway cup u14 girls category in Oslo, Norway
• 2005 Winners u14 girls Netherlands tournament in the Netherlands.
• 2005 and 2006 East African cup winners U16 girls held in Tanzania.

This is such a great profile for an aspiring professional footballer especially a lady coming from Kenya. Currently Kenya stands to have maybe one or not more than two women playing professional football, even though quite a number of ladies are on football scholarships in the USA.

I f you are inspired and would like Kate featured in one of the top women clubs or even get a football scholarship please forward this article to friends, football recruiting colleges etc. It will be so unfortunate if this dream is lost on the way, if Kate manages to get a scholarship or professional football contract she would be a great motivator and inspiration to many girls who think there isn’t hope at the end of the tunnel despite all that they go through. Initiative like Sakata ball challenge by Safaricom and Barclay girls tournament are a great deal when it come to CSR ( Corporate Social Responsibility) initiative I would urge corporate to join the band wagon and support community development through sports etc.

Note: MYSA stands for Mathare Sports Association www.mysakenya.org

Kate Syprine can be reached through wilson.masaka[at]gmail.com

Pictorials:

Monday, August 22, 2011

What is your contribution?


Jedidiah and Maryanne


Mark, Nur and Masaka


Wilsenx initiative - Tribes 42 brand t-shirt. Model on the picture Ms. Evaline Akida.

Model in the picture: Bonnie from MEDEVA
Model on the picture: Mary Wanjiku (web designer) and Caroline Mbiru ( Visual artist)

Green design too :)

Get yourself a copy!
send email to wilson.masaka@gmail.com

What is your contribution towards a peaceful coexisting of people in Kenya while we still embrace our cultural diversity etc? At Wilsenx we create positive art works that relates to people and we contribute towards positive changes in our community and the world at large.