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UW Synergy Program Students Raise Funds for Grassroots Programs in Kenya

November 26, 2012
People dancing
Harakati ya Kilimo-Uhifadhi farmers dance with UW students during a summer study abroad course last June. (Harakati ya Kilimo-Uhifadhi Photo)

University of Wyoming students will sell T-shirts, chocolate and silicone bracelets from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 27 and Thursday, Nov. 29, in the Wyoming Union to raise money for a Kenyan nonprofit organization’s grassroots programs.

Freshmen students in the Synergy Program class "Images of a Continent, Old and New: Exploring African Cultures" will raise funds for Harakati ya Kilimo-Uhifadhi nonprofit organization’s (NPO) educational and agricultural programs.

Gatua wa Mbugwa, the course instructor, says the current students designed the T-shirts, while earlier students designed the silicone bracelets. This is the third consecutive year that UW Synergy freshmen students raised funds for the Kenyan NPO.

The students also will hand out fliers for "Beyond Images of a Continent, Old and New: Exploring African Cultures in Kenya," a UW summer study abroad course that wa Mbugwa teaches in Kenya. Enrollment in the course is under way.

The Kenyan NPO manages a research and training program in conservation agriculture for small farms, an adult education program that aims to attain 100 percent literacy for the community, a self-help farmers’ economic improvement program and an after-school program that gives elementary school children access to books and other literacy materials.

The “Images of a Continent, Old and New: Exploring African Cultures” Synergy course explores U.S. and global impacts of African cultures and history. Students critically examine issues and impacts of African writing and literature, music, agriculture, politics, religion, medicine and education.

Synergy is a nationally acclaimed learning community for first-year UW students that provides a challenging set of courses in a supportive environment.

For more information, email Gatua wa Mbugwa at

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