Our email address begins with “openingdoors,” not only because that is part of the ODWEP name, but because you are opening a door when you write to us, and we are opening a door and welcoming you in.
Our computer programmer friends have warned us that if we write out our full address, with the usual email symbol for “at,” we will be vulnerable to hacker and spam robots that “scrape” and “snatch” addresses and misuse them, so we know that you will understand what our address is if we write it here as |openingdoors(at)|.


ODWEP is looking for local and international friends and partners – across Africa and around the world – and that begins with communication. What are your thoughts about what you have read on this website? Please write to us, |openingdoors(at)|. Tell us a little about yourself, how you came to our website, and what you think.

Yes, financial donations are essential to our existence and growth, but we are hoping that our relationships with local and international friends will have many dimensions. There are valuable ways you can volunteer your time for ODWEP – some, from the comfort of your own home, and some, by coming to spend time with us at Kakuma.

Volunteer with ODWEP, and help Overcome Devastation and Open Doors


We need help exploring the world of grant funding, and we need help writing grant proposals. Do you have experience in these areas? Can you volunteer your time to explore what grants ODWEP might be eligible for, and to work with us in developing grant applications? If youthink this is a possibility, please write us with your thoughts or questions, |openingdoors(at)|. Thank you!


We would love to make this website available in languages other than English. Do you have the knowledge and experience to translate from English into another language? You don’t have to commit to translating the whole website, if that feels like too much; a few of the pages can give at least a sense of the whole. If you think this is a possibility, please write us with your thoughts or questions, |openingdoors(at)|. Thank you!


We are thinking of implementing (in the future, not immediately) a program that would allow skilled volunteers to come to Kakuma and help with some of our work. If you read through the “Our Work” pages, you saw that we mentioned this possibility in relationship to our Sewing workshops, and also Child Play Therapy – and there are other possibilities as well.Are you a certified ESL teacher, and can you bring with you the ESL materials you would need to conduct a class? If yes, we would welcome you. We would also love someone who could help out in the field of arts education, both for children and adults. (We are thinking of music or the visual arts – word-based arts like poetry and theater would be difficult, unless you know Swahili. Some camp residents know some English or French, but this is their second or third or even fourth language; they can communicate with you in a basic way, but not as a language for creative self-expression.)

This is a volunteer project, and you would be responsible for all your transportation and living costs. You would work in the camp during the day and we would make arrangements for you to stay at night outside the camp, in the compound with international aid workers. (Non-refugees cannot live within the camp.) The venture will cost you several thousand dollars (transportation and living expenses) – but you will gain the experience of a lifetime. If you think this might be a possibility for you, write to us and tell us about yourself, |openingdoors(at)|. We are not starting this program immediately, but we can be in communication now. If you are a university student, and want to use this project as an internship (for example, if you are studying in the field of arts education), we are happy to communicate with your professors to discuss the idea.


Can you make an announcement or short presentation about ODWEP at your school or workplace or social club, your church, synagogue, mosque, or temple, sharing stories about the work we are doing, how ODWEP is helping to Open Doors to Women’s Empowerment, to Vocational Training, to Education, to Alternatives to Violence? Write to us, |openingdoors(at)|, and let us know how we can support you in that effort. If we produce a leaflet, could you print out copies to distribute, to encourage people to visit our website and support our work? Would you like us to write a letter directed particularly to your organization or group? (Please give us a month’s notice.)

World Refugee Day, declared by the United Nations, is observed on June 20. We want to begin now to think together with our international friends about what we can do on June 20 to spread the word about ODWEP, an organization of, for, and by refugees (and repatriated refugees).
Please write to us with your thoughts and suggestions, |openingdoors(at)|

There are other calendar events that can be related to ODWEP, including February as Black History Month/ African Heritage Month in the United States and Canada; March 8 as International Women’s Day throughout the world, and March as Women’s History Month in the United States. (October is Women’s History Month in Canada.)
Dates marked by the United Nations that are related to ODWEP’s work, in addition to World Refugee Day, include:
April 7, World Health Day
 July 30, International Day of Friendship
 August 12, International Youth Day; August 19, World Humanitarian Day
 September 5, International Day of Charity; September 21, International Day of Peace
 October 2, International Day of Non-Violence; October 11, International Day of the Girl Child; October 17, International Day for the Eradication of Poverty
 November 20, Universal Children’s Day; November 25, International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women
 December 1, World AIDS Day; December 3, International Day for Persons with Disabilities; December 20, International Human Solidarity Day


It’s possible that you or someone you know may have access to goods or equipment that would be helpful to us, or perhaps you can ask a local business for a donation. Please communicate with us, |openingdoors(at)|, if you think you may have access to such goods and if you can assume full responsibility for packaging and shipping costs. Our Sewing workshops can always use quantities of fabric – and certainly well-functioning second-hand sewing machines. Our children can always use toys such as crayons and soccer balls. Used but well-functioning computers would be very welcome! Please write to us,|openingdoors(at)|, before trying to send anything. Thank you!

         Become a funding or fund-raising partner, and help promote Wholeness, Empowerment, and Possibility in lives Devastated by poverty and violence.


Do you want to partner with us – to invest in ODWEP, with our community-based approach and programs that are, at one and the same time, concrete and practical and long-term and visionary? We are needing partners who want to invest in long-term change. We invite you to join with us, to pledge a monthly donation, whether as an individual or an organization committed to compassion, change, and human solidarity. We are looking for a relationship. We would love to hear from you, by writing to us at |openingdoors(at)|


Donate Your Birthday
Make your birthday about something bigger than yourself, and request that friends and family donate to ODWEP in your honor. If you want, we can create a leaflet for you to print up, with our logo. Write  and tell us the details. (Please give us a month's notice.)

Donate Your Graduation
You’ve reached an important milestone. In honor of your graduation and the new paths opening in your life, request that friends and family donate to ODWEP in your honor. If you want, we can create a leaflet for you to print up, with our logo. Write |openingdoors(at)| and tell us the details. (Please give us a month’s notice.)

Fitness Fundraiser
Run, dance, bike, swim: can you use your favorite fitness activity to raise money? Can you commit to a fitness goal and ask friends and family to donate to ODWEP if you achieve your goal? It’s extra incentive to keep you going, and they will know it! We welcome any amount that you can raise. Maybe ask others to join you in the goal – running a half-marathon? walking a mile every morning before work? – and you can both/ all fund-raise from those who would love to see you reach your fitness goal.

Create Your Own Fundraiser
You’re creative and brilliant, so let that shine through. Perhaps take the “Fitness Fundraiser” idea and apply it to something else – what personal goal are you striving for, that your friends and family would love to see you achieve? Or come up with your own idea for a fundraiser and get all of your friends involved. (Watch a refugee-themed movie together, and have a donation bucket for ODWEP?) If you want, we can create a leaflet for you to print up, with our logo. Write |openingdoors(at)| and tell us the details. (Please give us a month’s notice.)


Overcoming Devastation and Opening Doors