• Lily tells us about how she gave up her job to start this project to provide education to children from the informal settlement
  • We talk about how her vision has grown from the five children she originally wanted to help in 2003 to the hundreds, including many disabled children, whose lives have been changed since
  • Lily explains to us how she accidentally became a passionate advocate for inclusion
  • We talk about the challenge of gathering resrouces for this kind of work – and why passion is what matters in the end
  • We also hear what Lily has learnt in the process of developing and expanding the project
  • And she gives us her advice about getting your own change making project started as well.

Some quotes from the show:

‘The needs of children an informal settlement are more than education, that was why we called it an early childhood development centre’
‘The main challenge is being able to get enough resources to provide the kind of services that the kids need because the majority of their parents are struggling to pay rent and put food on the table’

‘I mobilised my friends and we sat down as a committee and all the ones who were thinking I was crazy are now the ones I put on the committee and said we can do something’

‘We thought we were going to work with five children but the number of kids was growing everyday’

‘I looked at my child and I asked myself, if this set up was meant for my own child, what would I provide for them?’

‘The project is a collaboration between little rock, the child and the parents’

‘After the post election violence the parents had begged you to keep the school open because it was the safest place for their children, I always remember that’

‘There is no way you can teach a hungry child and you cannot teach a sick child, so the porridge and the lunch really is a boost for them’

‘Even if a mother or father walks in and they have nothing, their children are fed’

‘Biggest lesson is the joy and the opportunity that the children have got’

‘A number of the kids have been able to go to high school including three kids admitted to national schools because of their grades’

‘We simply spend our door to disabled children and said please come, we are ready to welcome you, we are ready to communicate with you and provide your child with quality early childhood education which was our mandate and our core business’

‘In 2006 a mother brought her child to the centre and we realised that the child was not able to walk so we asked ourselves if this was my child, what answers would I expect from the other side and so we accommodated her daughter who had cereal palsy in to our set up’

‘Our classrooms our inclusive we do not segregate the kids and have a special unit, we put all the kids in the classroom and they are learning together. So we have become advocates of inclusion.’

Connect with Lily
Little Rock Website:
Little Rock Facebook:
You can also find a few different interviews with Lily on You Tube by searching for Little Rock Kenya there!


  • The differences between our attitudes to entrepreneurship in Tanzania and the UK
  • How the internet is changing how entrepreneurs work all over the world
  • We ask whether people in rural areas are being left behind as entrepreneurship gets easier for those who are well connected?
  • We also talk cash economies, chutney and what happens when you have too many tomatoes?
  • We ask each other what we think is innovative in business right now?
  • How companies like Uber and Air BnB are spreading their reach by solving our problems

Some quotes from the show:

‘We had to jump into the fire to discover just how difficult it it’
‘In the UK being an entrepreneur is like a choice, something you do if you have creative ideas and want to do it your own way. In Tanzania everybody wants to have a business on the side.’
‘If you’ve got an idea and you are willing to experiment with it, like try it out, see what works and tweak things like you did with Kipilipili and make changes in response to what people want and need from you, then it starts to become a business idea’
‘It’s not like the old days when you had to pay someone to print a flyer for you, or you had to pay someone to design a logo or you had to pay someone to design a website for you, nowadays you can actually do everything yourself’
‘You have UBER, are you serious? Wow! All they are really doing is providing the technology’.
‘There are so many technologies that are slowly being introduced to Tanzania’
‘We are talking about the same things even though we are 7000 miles apart that these things are so transferable and replicable and it’s the same system extended to a new territory. It’s like an an unbelievable entrepreneurs opportunity that you couldn’t have imagined 30 years ago’
‘A lot of them have two sides to the coin. The UBER things probably means taxi drivers get more work but they don’t have a lot of security. Generally these technologies are allowing people to get work they wouldn’t have got before but not on a secure or lasting bass with a long term contract, pension or national insurance. The flip side is they might not treat people so well’
‘And then when you look at Air BnB that’s just kind of like  community, right? Basically its people offering their houses to people – it doesn’t even sound like a business idea at all!’
‘It’s just a matter of listening to what the people or community about you are saying, or what is the pressure point? And then try and give a solution’
‘Being an entrepreneur simply means giving out solutions to people and then just not giving up if you truly believe in your idea’
‘If you are consistent enough you will reach your goal!’