Born in a rural hamlet a few Kilometres from Nairobi, my family relocated to Korogocho slum in Nairobi to escape rural poverty. However, poverty in a slum manifested in our lives in worse-off ways than rural poverty.
My choice to study Natural Resource Management at university was driven by a desire to pursue something that would take me out of the urban commotion, hopefully to the tranquil of the wild, to work as a forester or a game warden. I retreated back to the slum after university with high hopes of making my ultimate exodus.
In a bid to get myself busy and locally relevant while waiting to secure my desired job, I slowly got initiated to participating in self-help efforts for addressing the many challenges inherent in the lives of slum dwellers. This led me into a journey of reflection on all these informal systems and cracks, and questioning the elements unfolding in harmony or in tension with each other.
And to gain a vantage point for my reflection and inquisitiveness, I gradually got immersed in practical projects and advocacy in slums. Water and sanitation, youth affairs, education, local political participation, waste management, slum upgrading as well as peace building in local conflict situations are among the local initiatives I engrossed in.
With the environment management skills and new ways of community organising I acquired in small-scale initiatives in marginalized communities in Nairobi, I stretched out to the rural areas of Kenya. I have progressively devoted to working on diverse practical projects and advocacy on environmental and related socio-economic issues in both human and ecological systems (socioecological systems).
In addition to practical work and advocacy, I have also conducted surveys and scientific research on environment and development issues and linked knowledge with policy, practice and learning. In the course of my work I have traversed diverse terrains and engaged with people from all walks of life including ordinary folks, community leaders, policy makers etc. I also engage in pastime creative writing in an effort to amplify my scientific voice by conveying the sustainable development message in a creative language. Check my blog at: https://georges-chips.weebly.com/