Our Why

Co-founder Francis Odhiambo was raised in the largest slum of Kenya, called Kibera. He is a talented dancer who knows the difficulties of growing up as a child in this area. There are many problems such as crime, violence and drug abuse. He did not know how to handle his environment and navigate life here. All he wanted was a safe space that gave him the right tools to handle his challenges.

Luckily, he found a mentor and started to give children in his community what he lacked growing up – a safe space to express yourself and guidance by a mentor. He started teaching children to dance, and it quickly became so popular that children knocked on his door every Saturday morning, asking him to come and dance with them. 

After some dance classes, Francis noticed the changes in their behaviour, more positive attitudes, self-esteem and improved communication skills – he knew then and there that dance had the power to transform lives.

In 2018, Cherrelle Druppers came to visit one of Francis’ classes and recognised the immense potential of Francis’ work. As a development professional, educator and dancer, Cherrelle understood the importance of dance and started to dig deeper into how Francis’ work could be more structured and able to reach more children.

Together they founded ChezaCheza and started working on a curriculum that could support children in navigating their challenging environment. The innovation of ChezaCheza is a dance therapy class that combines DMT, SEL, and mindfulness as essential building blocks for change.

Mental Health Kenya

Children living in these communities live in an environment of stress, which includes violence, crime, abuse and hunger. There is a lack of services to support children’s mental health and well-being that is culturally appropriate, fun and accessible.

By providing weekly dance therapy sessions, children engage in an interactive learning experience where they build essential social and emotional skills, connect with others, express their emotions and build confidence. Experiencing joy, releasing stress and coping with emotions can help children navigate life’s challenges and make responsible decisions.

Future Change Makers

Our Mission

To create access to safe spaces for children in marginalised communities where dance supports their mental health and well-being.

Our Vision

ChezaCheza wants to equip every child with the capacity to make responsible life choices and realise their full potential.

Meet the co-founders


Francis Odhiambo

Art and Leadership

Francis is an award winning youth leader with various awards in Kenya for his work in marginalized communities in Kenya. His passion has not gone unnoticed, he has been numerously selected to be part of different international fellowships and conferences focused on Education and social entrepreneurship. Francis is also a Global Youth Ambassador for Education. He is an Educator who is hugely passionate about using dance to promote social-emotional learning and life skills in Education.


Cherrelle Druppers

Education & International Development

Cherrelle has an MSc. in International Development and Bsc. in Education. ChezaCheza bring together her passion for art, education and youth development. She is interested in creating and implementing innovative learning solutions that ensure at-risk children from resource-limited communities get the skills to thrive.