Alumni from Kenya charted a new chapter in Kenya-Australia relations on 30 April 2013 with the launch of the Kenyan Australian Alumni Association (KAAA). Over 100 Alumni converged at the residence of HE Mr Geoff Tooth, Australian High Commissioner to Kenya, to mark the occasion. This included Australia Awards Alumni and those privately funded. Officially launching the event, High Commissioner Tooth described the establishment of the association as a milestone, as the organisation will play an important role in fostering and nurturing links between Australia and Kenya.
“I am excited about the formation of the Alumni Association because Kenyans who studied in Australia have become an important bridge in the relationship between Australia and Kenya,” he said.
The KAAA will also promote Australian scholarships and support development efforts in Kenya. High Commissioner Tooth stressed that Africa’s future holds immense promise and that Australia is proud to contribute to it. Kenya is one of Australia’s biggest sources of students on mainland Africa, with thousands having studied there over recent decades.
Nearly 200 Kenyans have been recipients of Australia Awards over the last three years.
Speaking at the event, Njoki Kahiga, Acting Principal Secretary in the Kenyan Ministry of State for Public Service, congratulated Alumni for taking this step, noting that this is the beginning of exciting times. She mentioned that the association will offer a forum that will enable Alumni to connect in a very special way.
“The relationship between Kenya and Australia goes back to the independence of the country. Australia has contributed immensely to capacity building and development in Kenya. The relationship between the two countries has been very strong,” she said. “We hope the association will grow from strength to strength and contribute to the development of this country.”
Kenya has now joined the ranks of other Australian Alumni associations recently established in Mozambique, Uganda and Zambia.