Nightly News   |  March 23, 2013

Couple’s school becomes lifeline in Kenya

A school in Kenya is helping its students get a chance at a better future. Chelsea Clinton reports.

Share This:

This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>>> finally tonight our "making a difference" report, about hopes and dreams that may come true for the girls who attend a remarkable school in africa. chelsea clinton has the story tonight.

>> reporter: it's storybook time at the school for girls in nairobi, kenya . a special experience in a unique place. children like vanessa ioma are some of the poorest on earth. but here -- -- she gets a chance at a better future.

>> my dream is to be a doctor.

>> reporter: these kids live in a place where dreaming isn't easy.

>> welcome.

>> reporter: thank you.

>> this is my home.

>> reporter: he was also raised here, in kaberra, kenya 's sprawling slum where about 1 million people live without clean water or electricity, and two out of every ten children die before their fifth birthday. kennedy and his american wife jessica are helping some of the girls beat the odds. they built the school for girls as a labor of love. why do you all like clef ford so much?

>> because he was a good dog.

>> a good dog.

>> reporter: in a country where most children never attend school, these girls are getting the skills to break the cycle of poverty.

>> it's an amazing thing to see when a parent looks at their child, and sees that they have the chance of having such a better future.

>> reporter: esther wanted to study medicine. but she was forced to marry at 14.

>> i am lucky that i find this school.

>> reporter: she now dreams her daughter vanessa becomes a doctor.

>> i am a strong woman.

>> i believe in myself.

>> i believe in myself. .

>> reporter: the school also provides a safe haven from the slums' constant dangers.

>> it's really even hard to talk about. but 27% of our students have been sexually assaulted. we can provide a safe place to protect these girls .

>> reporter: positive role models help. once a homeless boy who taught himself to read and write , kennedy is now known as the mayor of caberra and he graduated from connecticut.

>> it does not matter where you come from, only where you want to go.

>> reporter: for kennedy and jess, married in june, this place, and these girls , are home. chelsea clinton , nbc news, nairobi, kenya .