Visiting Kenya

Many people ask if it is possible to visit Unity School in Mombasa. The answer is yes. But there are factors that need to be taken into consideration.

 The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) Website shows the latest advice to travellers. In recent years Covid has been the major concern, but tropical diseases are always around.  Ensure that you have appropriate vaccinations and have malaria tablets with you.  You will need approriate travel insurance

If you are on holiday near Mombasa it is quite possible for you to visit the school in term time. You will be warmly welcomed. But, Please do not try and find Unity School without a guide or on foot, and only visit in daylight hours. Contact us and we will put you in touch with the Head Teacher who will arrange for you to be met at your hotel or an agreed location. 

If you would like to join some of the Trustees on one of their visits please contact us and we will let you know our plans and dates. You will need to be over 18. The basic cost of air fares, accommodation and expenses is around £1500 for two weeks.  Visitors are encouraged to assist the Kenyan teachers while at Unity School, but will not be alone without a teacher. Any other skills such as IT, music, sport or drama would be very welcome, but not essential as both students and teachers always want to hear about life in the UK.  Visitors with particular skills eg. medical or teaching are invited to plan well ahead with the head Teacher in order to make an effective contribution.


Guidance Notes for Adults and Students visiting Unity School, Mombasa, Kenya


Unity School is in the Kisuani District of Mombasa in an area known as Freretown. 

It is housed in a compound protected by fences. Access is by a gate usually manned by a security guard.  The surrounding district is considered to be a “safe” area during daylight hours.


The following notes are intended to help you remain safe and enjoy your visit to Kenya,


Before you go:

Check that you have appropriate vaccinations.  The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) website has good advice and is updated regularly.

Hepatitis A, Typhoid. Be up to date with Tetanus and Diphtheria vaccinations.

Malaria tablets eg, Malerone, to be taken each day and up to the prescribed time after returning. (Recommended that these are taken in the morning)

High strength insect repellent to be used at all times. Mosquito nets to be used at night.


Check the FCO website for warnings of possible terrorist activity and no-go areas for tourists.


Ensure that you have travel insurance to cover any medical treatment you may need in Kenya. Most insurance firms offer a range of cover eg lost money, passport replacement, hospital treatment standard. Check that your policy does not contain exemption clauses because of your age or pre-conditions.


Make sure that Unity School staff know when you are arriving at the airport so that you can be met.


Travel in Kenya

Make sure you know how you will travel to your hotel or Unity School. 

Three members of the Unity Staff have driving licences and will expect to chauffer you around. They may arrange taxis or matatus (Mini buses). Only travel in a matatu if you are accompanied by one of the teaching staff. Likewise, do not walk anywhere unless you have a reliable Kenyan guide. Negotiate the price of a taxi, tuk-tuk or matatu before you set off. 


When travelling, keep money and valuables secure and out of site.  Anything from an expensive watch or large camera may attract the wrong kind of attention. Beware of pick-pockets in crowded places such as the city centre.

Wear suitable clothing, especially if travelling off the tourist routs.  eg in Islamist areas of Mombasa too much bare flesh may attract the wrong kind of attention. Footwear needs to be suitable as pathways are rarely smooth or free from obstructions.

Take sufficient drinking water, from reliable shops (who sell it in sealed bottles).  Not all that is offered by street vendors is what it says on the bottle. 


Working in school

The Senior staff at Unity will guide you on what you can do to assist in a classroom. The Government of Kenya has recently introduced restrictions on foreign teachers, so make sure that one of the Kenyan teachers is always with you in a classroom.  As in the UK, don’t get drawn into anything other than good practice pupil-teacher relationships. The Kenyan children are very friendly and open towards visitors but you need to respect the boundaries.


If visits to the homes of any Kenyan children are arranged, a Kenyan teacher must accompany you. If you feel the need to offer financial help to a family you must only do so through the headteacher or through the charity.

Wear suitable clothing – look to the African teachers if you need guidelines.  You will be given more respect if you look like a teacher, less like a tourist.


Visiting Tourist sites or going on Safari

As above, ensure that your travel arrangements are secure.  Do not accept offers from strangers – often to be found near the entrances to tourist sites. You will usually be offered the services of a guide. Once again, if you are with a Swahili speaking teacher you will get a better deal and will also be less likely to be cheated.