A personal note from Executive Director James Nardella…
With both sadness and joy, I am writing from Kenya to tell you that this will be my final season as Executive Director for the Lwala Community Alliance. My full-time employment will end in September, but Lwala will remain an active commitment for my family and me. Leading this mission has been so much more than a job as Lwala has become like a second home for us.
The decision is entirely amicable between me and the board and our co-founders Milton and Fred, and the transition is based primarily on my family’s changing goals. As new parents, Jena and I wish to be closer to our families on the West Coast, and I desire to be more present as a husband and dad.
The last six years have been extraordinary. I am so proud of what has been accomplished organizationally and in the lives we are touching here in Kenya every day. I am awed by the progress we are witnessing in helping children survive, reducing the burden of HIV, and increasing opportunities for women and girls.
Lwala is in a strong position to continue this work, and we will need your continued support. With two dozen partner relationships, our 2020 Strategy as a road map for the next five years, stable staff in key roles, and a professionalizing board, I believe the organization is in a place where it can withstand this change in leadership and flourish in a new season.
The board is now conducting a national search for a new Executive Director. Interviews are scheduled to begin in late August. Please spread the word about this opportunity to the good leaders you know. We are looking for someone with at least 10 years of relevant experience, including 4 years of senior executive leadership experience at a for-profit, social enterprise, or nonprofit organization. You can read the complete position profile here.
My next chapter will be with the Skoll Foundation in Palo Alto, California, where I will vet future awardees for the Skoll Award in Social Entrepreneurship and build community amongst the 18 current recipients of this three-year award.
Thank you again for the support you have given to Lwala and to me during these past six years. I am forever grateful.
This spring, we started partnering with Kangu to better connect mamas in Lwala with those who care about them in the U.S. Kangu is an online crowd-funding platform, which allows individuals to fund a specific pregnant woman’s access to clean, life-saving healthcare services. Safe birth services include: prenatal/antenatal care, skilled attendance at delivery, emergency obstetrics, [...]
By James Nardella, Executive Director of Lwala Community Alliance One evening in 2011, after a day of plowing her family’s fields with a neighbor’s bull, Vivian Okoth* was leading the animal back to its owners. On the way, the bull charged her from behind, caught her with his horns, and threw her into the air. [...]
NASHVILLE, TN — The work of Lwala Community Alliance is featured in two chapters of The Mother & Child Project: Raising our Voices for Health and Hope, which releases today – March 31. This book, published by Zondervan, is a collaboration of 42 essays by notable politicians, celebrities, pastors and global health advocates – including [...]
Lwala is a finalist in a funding opportunity through the Amplify “Zero to Five” Challenge through OpenIDEO.com. In a nutshell, 443 ideas were submitted on innovative projects organizations would like to initiate in their communities. Our idea focuses on how GIS mapping can be used in “Thrive thru 5″ to reduce under-5 mortality. 31 of IDEO’s “most innovative ideas” [...]
Lwala Community Alliance community celebrated World AIDS Day on December 1 with a benefit gala at Boston University. More than 110 gathered to listen to the reflections of Co-Founder Fred Ochieng’ and to hear from keynote speaker Donato Tramuto, founder of Health eVillages which provides healthcare technology to some of the most under-resourced environments in [...]
NEW YORK, NY — In less than five years, the percent of pregnant women delivering in a health facility in a remote region of western Kenya has skyrocketed from 26% to 96%, resulting in a 50% reduction of neonatal mortality in the community compared to the region at large. This achievement is due to Lwala [...]
The IZUMI Foundation recently awarded Lwala with a grant to expand the Lwala Community Hospital’s infrastructure and provide additional on-site housing for clinical providers. Through this investment, the IZUMI Foundation will join Ronald McDonald House Charities to support Lwala’s Thrive Thru 5 program, which aims to reduce under-5 mortality in the community by 50% by 2016. [...]
We are excited to announce that Lwala Community Alliance has been invited to be members of Clinton Global Initiative (CGI) in 2014! In 2009, Lwala Co-Founder Dr. Milton Ochieng’ was invited to attend the CGI Annual Meeting. At the meeting, Lwala made a formal commitment to “Safe Motherhood” in order to enhance the quality and [...]
This Mother’s Day, our partner Watsi provided Lwala with a special opportunity. Through their crowdfunding platform, Watsi matched every dollar given to Lwala for maternal care in the days leading up to Mother’s Day. Thank you to all who supported the expectant mothers! With your help we were able to fully fund 56 women to [...]