April is Volunteer Month

Volunteers are crucial to the success of organizations like SOTENI International. Every year, volunteers give over 2,300 hours to SOTENI, here in the U.S. and in Kenya.

Our dedicated Board of Trustees is a diverse group of professionals from around the United States, committed to fulfilling the mission of SOTENI: Alexandra Vrazo (Chair), Victoria Wulsin (Founder, Vice Chair), Lawson Wulsin (Secretary), Tim Deasy (Treasurer), Kathy Burlew, Lynn Deasy, Jonathan Godbout, Hema Krishnan, Daniel Odipo, Joseph Ruter, Sandy Spinner and Tyrone Yates.

SOTENI recognizes our volunteers for their hard work and support:

  • Cassie Booth, Lead Communications Intern

  • Megan Douds, Grant and Microlending Support

  • Matt Gahris, Communications Specialist

  • Jennifer Mooney, Communications Advisor

  • Denise Laidler, Grant Support

  • Aengus Nelson, Program and Bridge Volunteer

  • Bobby Rigsbee, E-Communications Intern

  • Deborah Tyson, Event & Communications Support

SOTENI also welcomes its summer volunteers and interns:

  • Ellen Beaty, Operations Volunteer, Cincinnati

  • Maria Malloy, Events Officer, Cincinnati

  • Martin de Aubyezon, Columbia University Fellowship in Kenya

  • Aengus Nelson, Xavier University, Summer Bridge Fellow in Kenya

If you would like to volunteer or learn more about how you can get involved, please visit https://www.soteni.org/get-involved

Celebration of Hope 2019 Success!

SOTENI International kicked off the month of March with the Celebration of Hope 2019 at the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center in Cincinnati.

Celebrating “Ubuntu”—I am because you are—was the theme of the Celebration of Hope, highlighting stories of perseverance and courage among those who continue to endure the HIV/AIDS epidemic in rural Kenya. Ambassador Pamela Bridgewater, who worked alongside President Nelson Mandela as the longest-serving U.S. diplomat in South Africa, delivered a stirring speech detailing her career in the Foreign Service, the importance of nonprofits like SOTENI in the fight against HIV/AIDS in Kenya, and what Ubuntu means to her.

“Ubuntu seeks to harness a collective will and to create a society free of poverty, hunger, and homelessness. Such ideals characterize the enterprising communities such as those in rural Kenya where SOTENI works,” Amb. Bridgewater said. “Ubuntu places a premium on human solidarity, compassion, and dignity.”

WATCH SOTENI’s Ubuntu Video

The Celebration of Hope and the accompanying online auction raised over $21,000 to help support SOTENI’s initiatives in rural Kenya.

Since the Celebration of Hope, Amb. Bridgewater has continued her collaboration with SOTENI, meeting with our staff in Kenya last week to discuss ways to work together in Kenya and the U.S. to further the fight against HIV/AIDS, to increase access to treatment, to raise more funding, and to continue building the capacity of the organization.