Congolese refugees learning recording skills

Felix at the computer console

Felix, age 24, and Richard, age 23, are in a 6 month internship to learn how to record and mix music at a local studio in Kitengela, Kenya.  This training is one of several initiatives the Kitengela Covenant Church is doing to help the over 300 Congolese refugees that have shown up at their church since 2009.

Felix and Richard arrived together as refugees from near Bukavu in N Kivu, DR Congo, in 2009.  Richard’s brother, currently a French teacher in a Kenyan school, accompanied them.  They were both musicians back in Congo, Felix playing the synthesizer and Richard keyboards.  They sang in a choir in the Methodist church in Congo.

The Kitengela Covenant Church provided the $250/person for the 6 month internship from the profits of their tomato business.  Richard and Felix go to a little studio for 2 hours/day, 6 days a week.  After completing their internship their dream is to set up their own recording studio, both to record their own music and to record music of other groups.  Pastor Simon Kamau of the Kitengela Church said that he hopes the recording studio can be a profitable business for them.

I asked what some of their difficulties have been since arriving in Kenya.  Right now the biggest difficulty is not having the computer and software to practice on at home or anywhere outside of class.

Felix & Richard in the recording studio

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