I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. All opinions are my own.
A group of young people in Kenya work through their band and outreach program to help young people seek artistic means of escaping a life of crime and hardship in author Nihar Suthar’s “The Hope Raisers: How a Group of Young Kenyans Fought to Transform Their Slum and Inspire a Community”.
The poignant and inspiring true story of three young Kenyans who fought to transform their slum and improve the lives of those around them.
Korogocho is one of Kenya’s darkest slums, plagued by gang violence, food and water shortages, and rampant pollution. Most children have no future except for scavenging through trash piles or resorting to lives of crime. One day, a boy named Daniel Onyango decided to do more, creating a band called the Hope Raisers to inspire the kids of Korogocho. His friend, Mutura Kuria, quickly joined in.
In The Hope Raisers: How a Group of Young Kenyans Fought to Transform Their Slum and Inspire a Community, Nihar Suthar tells the amazing story of how Daniel and Mutura turned the band into a platform for change. They started teaching children on the streets how to express themselves through art and established a skating team after finding a pair of rollerblades in the dump. Suthar closely follows the story of one rebellious girl, Lucy Achieng, who refused to get married off at a young age and instead used competitive rollerblading to reach for her dreams. Lucy continues to inspire girls to stand up for themselves and challenge the longstanding practices in Korogocho of early marriage and prostitution.
The Hope Raisers is an eye-opening look into a world of poverty and violence where children receive only a basic education and are left with little to no means to get out. Yet it also reveals the remarkable impact that a few determined individuals can have on their community, even in the most challenging of conditions.
Part of the proceeds from all book sales will be donated to the Hope Raisers and toward improving the slum of Korogocho.
This was a truly inspiring story. The author did an incredible job of capturing the despairing nature of the Korogocho slums and showcasing the hardships and struggles that people face here. Many people outside of Kenya remain unaware of how difficult life there truly is, with many people having to work as trash pickers to find food or unique items to survive and feed their families while dealing with local gangs, and young women having to choose between prostitution or marriage at a young age. The hardships and struggles mirror the haunting tone of the reality of life for so many in this part of the world.
Yet the juxtaposition of this darkness was matched by the hopeful tone and positive atmosphere this group of young people brought through their music and actions within the neighborhood. In the face of such adversity, the fight to help young people find a creative outlet and means of escaping this chilling reality they live in was a true inspiration to read about, and the author’s incredible use of imagery and artistry in his writing allowed the reader to feel this hope radiate off of the page.
Thoughtful, inspiring, and engaging, author Nihar Suthar’s “The Hope Raisers” is a must-read nonfiction book of 2022. The haunting nature of life in this Kenyan slum and the bright notes of hope that these incredible young people bring to life on their streets make this story shine so brightly in the darkness that often feels like creeps into our lives. If you haven’t yet, be sure to grab your copy today!
About the Author
Nihar Suthar is an award-winning writer, covering inspirational stories around the world. Believe it or not, he stumbled upon writing completely by accident after moving to New York City for the very first time (at the young age of 17). While in the Big Apple, Nihar noticed that there were thousands of people missing out on the greatness of everyday life, due to the very fast paced lifestyles they lived.
As a result of his observations, he had a big idea to inspire people around the globe by writing a book (which was strange, because he always hated reading books. Why would he ever write one?). With the support of his family and friends though, Nihar ended up debuting his first international book, Win No Matter What, with Balboa Press in May 2013.
Since then, Nihar’s work has taken him to both distant parts of the globe and down strange alleyways. For his 2016 release, The Corridor of Uncertainty, Nihar traveled to the United Arab Emirates and received threats from the Taliban, as he sought to chronicle the miraculous story of the Afghan cricket team. To deepen his understanding of the Middle East region, Nihar also studied Pashto, one of the official languages of Afghanistan.
Nihar graduated cum laude from Cornell University, where he studied applied economics and management, with concentrations in finance and strategy. He currently calls Tampa home. His newest book is about three young Kenyans who fought to transform their slum and improve the lives of those around them. Sign up HERE to receive exclusive content (early drafts, behind the scenes content, etc.) regarding Nihar’s next release, The Hope Raisers.