Letter from Our New Executive Director
Dear Partners and Friends of Dignitas,
It is with great excitement that I write to you in my new role as Dignitas’ Executive Director. From my first meeting with Tiffany to my engagement with the wider team over the last three months, I have been inspired by the impact of Dignitas and enthused about the potential for 2018 and beyond.
While I am not originally from Kenya, I have been living and working here for more than fifteen years. Nairobi is very much home for me and my family. Being a native Scot, I obviously appreciate the weather! However, it is the warmth and hospitality of the people around us that has kept us here for so long. I am also continuously inspired by the potential for transformation, the drive towards innovative change, and the constant hunger for a brighter tomorrow across the African continent.
I was drawn to Dignitas because of the alignment between my passion for seeing children in marginalized communities access opportunities to thrive and the organization’s vision to ensure children receive a quality education in order to develop the skills and strength of character to succeed.
“My experiences developing and leading various programs across Kenya cemented my belief that quality education is key to ending poverty and injustice, and to transforming families and communities.”
I have been impressed by Dignitas’ focus on empowering educators and the clarity with which the entire team pursues the vision of ensuring all children reach their potential. This clear focus sets the agenda for 2018 and really, our next decade of work. We are committed to reaching 300,000 children by 2022 and are collaborating with others to make this happen. My focus is to build strategic partnerships that complement our work and exponentially increase our impact. As we move into the new year, key tasks center around pursuing working relationships with the government, partnerships with like-minded non-profits, and other educational organizations. We are also in the process of understanding our impact so that we can sustain the quality of our work during this ambitious phase of growth.
Over the last few months, I’ve enjoyed getting to know the Dignitas team and I’m excited about working together with them – and you – to impact more school leaders, teachers, and children.
Lastly, thank you for all your support and partnership with Dignitas over the last decade. As we celebrate a decade of impact at Dignitas in 2018, I look forward to having the opportunity to meet you and continue onward in this journey together!
Warmest wishes for the New Year,
Meet our New Executive Director!
Dear Partners and Friends of Dignitas,
When we announced Tiffany’s departure as the Founding Executive Director at the end of 2016, we introduced you to Sarah Samuel, who joined Dignitas as the Executive Director in January 2017. Six months into her tenure, we agreed it was not the right fit and wished Sarah well in her exit.
All of us on the board quickly stepped into the gap to ensure continuity of our work while searching for a new leader who would build upon Dignitas’ track record of success. At the end of September, we hired Deborah Kimathi, a seasoned non-profit executive whose 15 years of experience in Kenya have focused squarely on empowering children in impoverished communities. In the past several months, we’ve had the pleasure of watching Deborah work closely with staff to continue delivering high-quality training, coaching, and support to educators in Nairobi’s most marginalized schools, launch a third-party assessment to quantify Dignitas’ impact on student learning, and develop a strategy to guide Dignitas’ ambitious goals to transform learning outcomes for 300,000 children in the next five years. The board is equally impressed with Deborah’s leadership and as invested as ever in what the future holds for Dignitas.
While Tiffany and the rest of the board continue to work closely with Deborah, we wanted to share this news with you as Dignitas partners and supporters so that you also have a chance to get to know Deborah , the experiences that have deepened her conviction for advancing justice, and what she feels most excited about in her new role. Please join us in welcoming Deborah to the Dignitas family!
We wish you peace, joy, and abundant love in the new year!
Tiffany, Bobby, Dr. Sheth, Smita, Steve, Perry, and Clare
Dignitas Trustees & Board Members