Sasa Designs Business Manager
Megan is responsible for managing Sasa Designs by the Deaf - DOOR's Kenyan job creation program for women creating unique jewelry for international export. Sasa Designs employs between 8-12 women at a time providing skills and leadership training alongside a fair wage. Megan is working to create market linkages with buyers in the US and Europe to allow Sasa Designs to reach further into Kenya's slums to employ even more Deaf women in dire need of healthy incomes and opportunities for themselves and their children. In addition, proceeds after expenses go to help reach the Deaf in Africa with the Gospel through DOOR's Africa Deaf Bible Training and Translation Center operation in Nairobi, Kenya.
Megan traveled to Kenya for the first time as a ten year old, and the people and country left an indelible mark on her heart. Over the years as she explored her faith, she felt called to return to the continent that first inspired her to seek to serve in an international context. In 2007, she left a career in public service to volunteer with a mission serving in Kwa Zulu Natal, South Africa where she worked at a children's center and managed an HIV/Aids prevention grant. On the heels of that work she was blessed with a grant to study abroad as a Rotary Ambassadorial Scholar, finally returning to Kenya in 2008.
During her first two years in Kenya, Megan began to understand the factors affecting both country and personal development in a country that continues to be plagued by poverty. Over time, she realized that job creation and education are the most important opportunities that anyone hoping to support the people of Kenya can help provide. Megan's research during her M.A. program focused on ethical artisans (i.e. following fair trade principles), accessing international markets via the Internet.
When she learned about Sasa Designs, she knew it was for a reason, and quickly joined the team! Having lived in Kenya since 2008, Megan knows how challenging it can be to find opportunities for work and spiritual enrichment if a person suffers from physical impairments. Further, she has learned during her time here how important employing women is - it is through positive employment that women ensure their children go to school, have healthy foods and the best opportunities possible. Working with DOOR to serve the deaf is a way for Megan to ensure her energy and blessings are invested in those most in need.
Megan studied Sociology at Chapman University in Orange, CA and holds a M.A. in Development Studies from the University of Nairobi.