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While living in Nairobi, Florentine and Skief Houben felt overwhelmed by the poverty as well as the circumstances of children living in city slums. Florentine was working as a volunteer in the slums when she met a local teacher who explained the lack of and need for a school in her slum. We were inspired when she shared that her dream was to found a school and we decided to help her realize this dream. In 2012 we officially set up the Shining Star foundation and started with 25 children in a church building. Since then we have built our own school and have grown to support 250 children.

Shining Star is a foundation under Dutch law, registered at the Dutch chamber of commerce. The Dutch authorities have recognized Shining Star as a charitable organization with ANBI-status.


Name: Stichting Early Childhood Development Centre Shining Star
Address: Crayenesterlaan 42
City: Haarlem
Country: The Netherlands
Phone: +31 6 12667390
Email address: info@shiningstar-africa.com
RSIN number: 8514.48.240
Chamber of Commerce number: 54808560
IBAN: NL13ABNA0470050977
Website: http://www.shiningstar-africa.com



Shining Star creates a good and safe educational environment for young children (toddlers between 1.5 and 9 years old) in order to give them a better start and future and to let them shine in life.


The foundation recruits sponsors to provide approximately 250 children with appropriate education.

Activities of the foundation

Every year an amount of money is raised to keep the school running. This amount is spent on the points below:

1. Retaining good teachers

2. Acquiring appropriate teaching materials

3. Expanding the food program

4. Providing clean drinking water

5. Maintaining and expanding the school building where necessary

6. Handing out uniforms

We ensure that there are Dutch coordinators on location to streamline all processes, and to determine the needs each quarter of a year.


1. Submitting applications to other Dutch foundations, for example the Anton Jurgens Fonds and Tuti Boni etc.

2. Involving commercial companies such as Donsje Amsterdam B.V.

Managing capital

We have a separate account for our foundation at ABN AMRO Bank. Sponsors will transfer the amount directly to that account. Each trimester, a contribution is transferred to the school in Africa. The school manager, Judy Nzomo, can use this money to fund the school's designated projects and daily needs. In addition, there is a Dutch volunteer, Bernadette de Kroes, who lives in Nairobi and helps Judy to draw up budgets, and checks her spending pattern if necessary.

Reward policymakers

100% of the contributions received for our foundation are used directly to realize our ambitions in Africa. We can substantiate all expenses. No one on our board will therefore receive a reward for their services. At most, expenses are reimbursed.

We keep our sponsors well informed and ensure that we are transparent so that everyone who supports us knows where the money is going and how each project develops.

Current activities

In 2020, the foundation is engaged in the following activities:

  • Extension of the food program (wider variety than just rice and corn)
  • New school bus
  • An extra space with iPads and computers for children to work with
  • Expansion and retention of good staff (including training for teachers)
  • Building and furnishing a library
  • Improving the area in and around the playground
  • An annual educational trip
  • More sports events
  • Organizing the graduation day
  • Purchasing uniforms for the students
  • Paying the rent of the school land
  • Financing the annual license for the recognition of the school
  • Annual fixed costs for the school’s primary needs
  • Purchasing a new T.V and D.V.D. - player

  • Current report of activities performed

    The following projects were completed in 2019:

  • 2 new classrooms were built and furnished
  • The kitchen was redesigned and new supplies were provided
  • New climbing frames etc. were placed at the playground
  • The toilets were replaced and a urinal was added
  • The outside of the school was painted
  • The teachers received a salary increase
  • A team building event for all teachers was organized as end-of-year activity
  • New textbooks were acquired
  • The graduation day was organized
  • Uniforms were purchased for the students
  • The rent of the school land was paid
  • Additional toys were purchased
  • Annual fixed costs were paid for the school’s primary needs
  • A sports day was organized
  • An educational trip was organized
  • The annual license for the school's recognition was renewed
  • The teachers received fire safety training

  • The balance sheet and statement of income and expenditure with explanatory notes

    Financial data 2018

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    We are grateful to the sponsors who help Shining Star in providing children with a better start in life!

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