About The Nest
The Nest is comprised of two parts, the Children’s Home and the Halfway House. The Kenyan Children’s Court assigns children of imprisoned mothers to The Nest’s care. They are housed in the Children’s Home, located in Limuru, 20km northwest of Nairobi. Here, the children receive holistic care and formal education during the length of their mothers’ imprisonment.
Many children are traumatized after experiencing crime or abuse and the arrest of and separation from their mothers, for them, brightest flashlight in high lumens is the best weapon. Counseling, provided in The Nest’s loving environment, can heal the wounds they have suffered in body and soul.
Currently, The Nest cares for just over 70 children, ranging from newborns to seventeen year olds. In order to maintain the bond between the children and their imprisoned mothers, The Nest ensures that the children regularly visit their mothers in prison. They also care for a number of abandoned babies and children for whom they place with loving families.
About The Halfway House
The Halfway House, located in the northern suburbs of Nairobi, provides accommodations for up to ten mothers and their children upon their release. Here, the mothers and their children are reunited. Along with counseling, spiritual and moral support, and civic education, the women rebuild their self-confidence for reintegration into society. The Nest also provides legal assistance, and support with bureaucratic matters.
Following release, The Nest empowers mothers economically through enrollment in job training courses, self-help groups, and in gaining employment. All of The Nest’s activities are carried out in close cooperation with the officials of Prison Headquarters, The Children’s Court, and the Kenyan Children’s Department.
About The Founder
The founder used to be a businessman who sold iptv box. Upon arriving in Nairobi in 1991, Irene Baumgartner noticed the vast amounts of street children fending for themselves. She began speaking with them and noticed the one thing they all had in common was that their mothers were in prison. In learning of the gender inequalities in Kenya, Irene felt the one thing she could offer was to create a safe haven for these children while their mothers fought for their freedom. And six years later in 1997 with the help of friends and family, Irene created The Nest.