Tell us a little about your background and how you came to start working in Training and development programs.
My name is Sandra Owiti-Chege from Kenya. My passion lies in human and talent development. My primary objective is to transform lives of young people through the creation and execution of practical inspiring learning experiences that will help them in strengthening their capacity building skills. Also, I strive to equip and connect the youth with the skills, technical expertise, knowledge and relevant resources they need to thrive.
For over 15 years, I have worked in the Organizational Training/Development, Youth Development and Education sectors and in the process have built my expertise in creating, executing and facilitating curriculum, programs and experiences that help organizations attract, develop and grow their human capital. I am a specialist in project management, organizational development and events management. I have also honed my business development skills in Performance Management, Policy development, human-centred Design Thinking, Leadership Development, Executive Training, and Team Building.
What does the organisation do?
I am currently executing my passion as the Learning and Curriculum Manager at YALI. The Young African Leaders Initiative (YALI) was launched by former President of the United States Barack Obama as a signature effort to invest in the next generation of African leaders.
What would you consider as your most significant accomplishment so far?
On a personal level, I would say raising my children ranks tops in my accomplishments thus far. On a professional level, being able to influence over 3,000 young African leaders from East and Central Africa by helping them to understand the role that they need to play for the transformation of Africa, I would say that’s my most significant accomplishment.
Have you experienced any challenges running this organization as a woman?
I am not at the helm of running YALI 😊. My responsibility is to lead the learning and curriculum department. However, reflecting on this question, I must say I have been rather fortunate that I have not faced challenges that are particular to me being a woman. There is, of course, the issue of finding harmony between your work and home life and being present in both as much as possible.
What’s next for Sandra?
Sandra continues her quest to inspire, equip and connect the youth. This is what I was born to do. Seeking out opportunities to help as many young people get their light bulb moments and not only realize their purpose and potential, but how that purpose and potential will help them transform the lives of those around them.
Any advice for women who would want to pursue this kind of venture?
1. Believe in yourself – This sounds very Cliché, but the truth is if you do not believe in yourself it may be difficult for other to think or even understand you and what you are trying to accomplish.
2. Form your tribe – form a troop of people around you who believe in you, who are open and honest with you, people who correct you but most importantly, have your best interest at heart. These are the people who will cheer you on when you are running low on steam.
3. The only way you will know it is impossible is if you try, so try!
How can well-wishers contact you or young people in need of mentorship?
I am open to mentoring young people. My ask is let me know what your top 3 mentoring needs are through twitter @sandraowiti or via email firstname.lastname@example.org. If I can meet the requirements, then we start the journey, if not, I will be sure to link you with someone who can.
Photos by Quincy Wandera..