Why Sustainable Programs Matter
As the Finance Committee Chair, Ken Macharia oversees the finances for You Care. We Care. globally, making sure that projections are being met and determining how to allocate funds and donations. However, his role is much more than that. He helps to make sure that You Care. We Care’s programs are actually sustainable. “Many non-profits come in and provide resources for a period of time. When the non-profit is no longer there or expanding, the resources also disappear. Our goal is to teach skills and support local leaders and organizations to develop quality programs so our impact is long-lasting and not dependant,” says Ken.
Ken Macharia, has been with You Care. We Care. since the organization’s inception in 2017. Born in Kenya, Ken has lived in the Greater Boston Area for the past 12 years working as an entrepreneur with a focus in healthcare. Prior to joining the board of directors, Macharia had spent a number of years working in the healthcare sector where he was introduced to You Care. We Care.’s Executive Director, Gina Strauss. When Strauss approached Macharia about the possibility of working together on this new project, Ken jumped at the opportunity.
Having not spent much time volunteering and doing charitable work, Ken thought this was a worthwhile time investment. Ken has described the organization as “a natural fit for me.” Ken was also motivated to support the organization when he heard the kids’ stories and realized he was in a position to make a real impact. The relationships he has created and influence he has had on the kids have been Macharia’s biggest takeaways and what he is most looking forward to most in the coming years.
While the programs the organization’s existing programs have already had a significant impact children with mental health, trauma and disability, part of Ken’s vision is to make sure that local residents, professionals, and leaders buy in to the organization’s plans. “Community planning and buy-in from local leadership is essential to our success in transforming a community we serve,” Ken notes.
As an end goal, Macharia hopes to see the work being done by You Care. We Care. spread into the local school systems in Haiti and in Kenya “to start to take away the stigma of mental and physical disabilities.” According to Ken, helping communities understand and accept seen and unseen disabilities is an essential step in continuing to provide help for individuals impacted by mental health, trauma and disability. In the end, Macharia is very excited to witness the growth of the organization and cannot wait to see how the programs develop and grow over time.