LivelyHoods Fellows in Nairobi, Kenya

Organization Description

LivelyHoods is a start-up social enterprise headquartered in the United States with the mission to create livelihoods for youth in urban slums. In Nairobi, Kenya, we employ youth as sales agents in a branded door-to-door sales force called iSmart. The iSmart distribution network addresses the challenge of marketing and distributing life-changing products in hard-to-reach markets like informal settlements. iSmart aims to be the go-to brand for value, service and “smart” goods in urban slum markets.

In just over a year, we’ve sold thousands of high-impact products and employed upwards of 60 high-potential youth. LivelyHoods has been recognized with 8 awards and fellowships for social innovation and social entrepreneurship and iSmart is currently positioning itself to open retail operations in three additional slum communities throughout Nairobi.

The Team.

What is the profile of someone that typically works with LivelyHoods?

A LivelyHoods Intern will have experience in business, education, technology and/or international development. With that said, we have employees from a wide range of backgrounds: entrepreneurs, MBA students, financial planners, IT specialists, and community organizers.

LivelyHoods looks for, but does not require, the following from applicants:

  •         Passion for the LivelyHoods mission
  •         Language proficiency in English, and/or Kiswahili
  •         Overseas experience – work or travel (preferably in developing countries)
  •         Someone who is comfortable managing projects
  •         High degree of flexibility, self-motivation and independence
  •         Excellent communication skills, both verbal and written
  •         Excels in a fast pace, start-up environment
  •         Familiarity with the “lean start-up” approach
  •         Patience
  •         Ability and commitment to fundraise expenses associated with position

We are looking for interns to provide support in the following areas:

  • Marketing, Merchandising and Consumer Insight

Develop, test and evaluate marketing and customer service experiments for the iSmart brand. Analyze customer-purchasing patterns and predict future trends to optimize profitability. Oversee the testing and evaluation of new products. Retail sales experience is a bonus.

  • Systems & Logistics

With the planned opening of three additional stores, help identify, reengineer and test new systems and protocols to increase efficiency. Manage the implementation and evaluation of new applications or systems related to inventory control, CRM, and POS systems.

  • Operations & Business Development

Assist in managing our growing sales force through the development of strategic relationships with funders, product suppliers, NGO agencies and the community. Operations and business management, especially in lower income market segments, will increase success in this position.

  • Education & Training

Analyze, develop and test new training modules for the initial and ongoing training of our sales force. Develop a program to recruit current sales agents into top-tier management systems within the organization. Experience in education, curriculum development and youth is a plus.

  • Monitoring & Evaluation

Work directly with the Director of Monitoring and Evaluation on rigorous monitoring and evaluation of key impact indicators as related to our Sales Agents and consumers. Analyze key income and expense drivers at iSmart, with an eye on efficiency and profitability. Experience in research, finance, accounting or investment banking is a plus.

  • Branding & Design

Reengineer iSmart’s brand presence in urban slum markets by developing and implementing a comprehensive branding strategy. Spend time understanding target consumer segment, and competitors in the market. Develop in-store layouts for iSmart’s retail branches and offices, and engage suppliers for favorable product marketing. Branding, graphic and/or interior design experience are a bonus.

All internships are unpaid. Interns must pay for airfare, food, lodging in Nairobi, Kenya. LivelyHoods staff will assist interns with coordinating trip logistics. In special cases, LivelyHoods will award a LivelyHoods scholarship to assist fellows cover travel costs.  Standout interns will be considered for full-time employment (3 of our previous interns are now full-time team members). All ages and backgrounds are welcome to apply.

What is life like as a Fellow?

Being an intern with LivelyHoods in Kenya is an unforgettable, invigorating experience. You will make a hands-on difference in the lives of Kenyan youth, as you help them learn to make a livelihood for themselves.

Interns have the option of living in an apartment with other interns, or they can stay at a local Kenyan’s home for a more traditional experience. Interns work from 8 to 5 each day as consultants to the organization staff, and work directly to hire youth, sell products and scale the impact. Interns can enjoy a variety of local cafes and restaurants nearby the organization site to experience authentic Kenyan food such as ugali. In the evenings and on weekends, the interns can arrange excursions together to local sites of interest. Safaris are especially popular. All previous interns have reported very positive feedback on their experiences working with LivelyHoods in Nairobi.

Application Details

Please include the following:

  •         A cover letter. Be sure to include why you want to work for LivelyHoods, what skills you bring to the internship,    and the position(s) for which you are applying.
  •         Your resume or CV.

Submit completed applications to Tania Laden, at tania@livelyhoods.org.  We will carefully read your application, but given our high volume of applicants, will only contact you if you qualify for the interview process.