Suggested Reading Outside Sources

Suggested Readings:

Khwisero / Western Kenya Specific

Baseline Survey of Community Based Organizations Butere - Mumias District, March 2006
A report of the organizations are present locally.
Download the PDF here

Wanga - English Dictionary, March 2008
A dictionary that translates between Wanga and English. Wanga is similar to Luyha (maybe?).
Download the PDF here

Kenya Water Act, 2002
This document is provided by the Kenya National government in explaining the Water Act passed in 2002.
Download the PDF here

Kenya National Education
For students to move up from Primary school to Secondary school they must pass a national test. The national test has 5 parts: English, Kiswahili, Social Studies and Religion Education, Science and Mathematics. One of the headmasters gave us a copy of the 2011 test.
Download English Test here
Download Kiswahili Test here
Download Social Studies and Religion Education Test here
Download Science Test here
Download Mathematics Test here

Sanitation / Water

Disease Chart
What is a water borne disease? Which diseases thrive in human waste? This chart explains which diseases come from different sources and how to prevent contraction.
Download PDF here

General Development / Poverty

Myths of The Water Supply Sector
A fairly succinct examination of misconceptions that can often lead to failed projects.

Ned Breslin: Rethinking Hydrophilanthropy
An examination of sustainability in water development projects.

Going with the Grain in African Development?
A lengthy but excellent discussion of historical African cultural patterns and how they often undermine development efforts based on westernized systems.

Mountains beyond Mountains by Tracey Kidder
An excellent read chronicling the impact Dr. Paul Farmer has had on the extreme poor of Haiti, and healthcare for the poor worldwide. This is a great work showing the benefits of working at the grassroots level AND the top down level.

The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind by William Kamkwamba
An inspiring story of a boy growing up in a poor family in Malawi and how utilizing the limited resources around him created a brighter future for himself, family, and village.

A Fist Full of Rice by Vikram Akula
This work explains the idea of one business man who wants to improve the lives of the poor in India through a for-profit micro-finance company. This is a great example of how to incorporated other's ideas into reaching a goal.

Banker to the Poor: Microlending and Battle Against the World's Poor by Muhammed Yunis
The creator of the Grameen Bank, an early and best well know micro-finance institution, explains his story.

Rural Development: Putting the Last First by Robert Chambers
An excellent read outlining the biases of a rich, urban, white person has gathering information and working with rural poor around the world. A must read for all who do on the ground work in rural development.

Portfolios of the Poor: How the World's Poor Live on $2 a day by Collins et al.
An excellent piece of work detailing the specifics of how the poor use money, loans, and savings to survive. Like most things the deeper one digs, the more complicated the topic becomes and this is no exception. What is also great is the authors actually make specific recommendations built upon their study.

Nine Hills to Nambonkaha by Sarah Erdman
This is Sarah's story of her two year Peace Corp assignment working in Ivory Coast. It is a great first hand account of trying to instill change in a foreign culture.

Blue Sweater by Jacqueline Novogratz
The personal account of Jacqueline's career in rural development from her time in Rwanda, pre genocide, up into her current role of director of the Acumen Fund. It is an excellent read and another first hand account of people working on the ground in Africa.

Out of Poverty by Paul Polak
An excellent read that questions what we know about helping others. Paul is a classic "searcher" in William Easterly's vernacular, because he does an excellent job of talking and listening to less fortunate individuals and understanding what their needs are. Paul also proposes that the for-profit companies should be focusing on the 2 billion poor people as a unappreciated customer base.

Reasons for Hope edited by Anirudh Krishma et al.
This is an academic work of about 25 case studies of different foreign aid projects around the world. Great insight can be gathered from these projects.

The End of Poverty by Jeffrey Sachs
Jeffrey proposes the Millennium Project, how it works, why it will work, and why the developed countries should act. A very insightful book written by a leading macroeconomics professor.

Africa Unchained: The Blueprint of Africa's Future by George B.N. Ayittey
This is one of the few non western authors of rural development, as the author is from Ghana. George outlines his argument that the post-colonial African Leaders plundered their country and pillaged the countries treasury for their personal gain is why Africa is in its current state. The historical and density of facts with examples from almost every African country make this book an excellent resource and slow to read.

Unbowed by Wangari Maathai
The Nobel Prize Peace winner Wangari chronicles her life growing up in Kenya, educated in the US, and returning to Kenya to be a science professor at the University in Nairobi. She lived through and was active in the turbulent 1970s and 80s of ending the president's term in office. Also in this time she created a very successful Greenbelt nonprofit based in Kenya.

White Man's Burden by William Easterly
William takes a different approach to foreign aid than Jeffrey Sachs and elaborates on benefits of his approach.

Leadership and Community Development

Everyone Leads: Building Leadership from the Community Up by Paul Schmitz, 2012
A great book that discusses why everyone can be a leader and why they are effective when utilizing an asset based community development approach. Some time is spent with how to build a leader such spending the beginning time learning about oneself. Also sites earlier works that their leadership model builds upon. The author is the CEO of Public Allies, a US based not for profit organization that specializes in building leaders who come from all walks for life.

Servant Leadership: Journey into the Nature of Legitimate Power and Greatness by Robert Greenleaf, 1977
A classic leadership work describing the strengths of a more passive leadership style.

Building Communities From the Inside Out: A Path Toward Finding and Mobilizing A Community's Assets by John P. Kretzmann and John L. McKnight, 1993
Describes the Asset Based Community Development (ABCD) model.


Readings that address the core ideas, conflicts and underlying development work like EWB's.

Paulo Friere: Pedagogy of The Oppressed
The first two chapters of Paulo Friere's book discussing a theory of educating to empower rather than perpetuate the status quo. Heavy philosophy, but excellent. The third image links to a glossary to help make sense of some of Friere's terminology.

Chapter 1 Chapter 2 Glossary
Pedagogy_of_Oppressed_Ch1.pdf Pedagogy_of_Oppressed_Ch2%20%281%29.pdf Freire%20Glossary.pdf

News Stories

NGO, NPO Organizations and Finances


Assessing Public Financial Management and Accountability in the Context of Budget Transparent Africa

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Suggested Viewing:

Esther Duflo: Social experiments to fight poverty
Applying scientific methods to aid work.

Jacqueline Novogratz: A third way to think about aid
Rethinking the paradigm we approach aid from.