Letter of Gratitude from Kingsley Kipury

Dear enke family, friends, supporters and partners,

I am writing to let you know that I will be resigning from my post as enke’s Chief Operations Officer and have officially submitted my resignation letter to Rufaro (the CEO) and the Board. I will be leaving enke at the end of August. As much as I am sad to leave, I am also very proud of the work we’ve done and excited about all the things yet to come.

I started volunteering with enke in 2009. I had just turned 18. I was lucky enough to be a mentor (what is now an Igniter/Presenter) at the inaugural 2009 forum. I got to witness the enke magic for the first time. I had the privilege of working with teenagers from around the country who are now enke legends; people like Sarah, Jarrod, Maja and T.K, whose stories I still tell with immense pride to this day.

I volunteered at every Forum from 2009 – 2011, getting to work with more rockstars like Sizwe, Meghan, Nkosana, Vusi, Katleho – and so many others. Pip brought me on to work full time in 2012. We worked closely to strengthen the organisations operations, finance and HR. Under Pip’s and now Rufaro’s incredible leadership, we have grown from an organisation that was defined by a single program to an organisation that’s guided by its purpose and consistently innovates around better and more effective ways to turn that vision into reality.

We’ve expanded our Trailblazer Program to Cape Town and Bloemfontein and are on the cusp of adding Limpopo and Northern Cape to that list. We’ve piloted the new Catalyst Program where we’re already seeing phenomenal results. We’ve launched our Bespoke Services where we customise our programs for clients while contributing to our long term financial sustainability. Most importantly, we’ve seen our alumni go on to do massive things; start non-profits, lead organisations, represent Africa across the world; we’ve even seen them come back and strengthen the team, like Thami, former presenter who is now flying high in our facilitator training and Bespoke Services.

About 18 months ago, I began to reflect on my time at enke and what I would need to see to deem my work here a success. I thought about my ‘enke project’ – building operational and financial sustainability. Over the past year it has become clear to me that that project we started has come to fruition. We’ve built a strong Operations department and have brought on great partners like Norton Rose Fulbright and PwC to support that. We are in a strong operational and financial position to take on the future.

With this realisation, it’s clear to me that it is time for me to move on.

I’ve been very fortunate to be a part of enke getting to where it is now, and it is time for me to step aside and let others take that vision forward. As much as this is a tough decision, it’s also a very easy one – because of my deep belief in Rufaro’s leadership and in a team that are as committed as ever to Make it happen and Make it better.

Contextually, the ever increasing service delivery protests around the country, as well as movements like #FeesMustFall are indicators that enke’s work is more relevant now than ever. I believe we have a talented team and a powerful organisation that’s really well positioned to be a part of the solution to the continent’s complex challenges.

What am I going to do next? I’m honestly not sure. I do know that it’s important for this chapter to end for me before I can begin the next adventure. It has also been over 8 years since I lived in my home country, Kenya, so I’m also looking forward to moving back home and spending quality time with my family.

Rufaro, the Board and I will spend the next six months finding a replacement and ensuring that we have a thorough transition process. And, I’ll always be part of the enke family (if you’ll have me) long after that. If you have any questions about my departure or the transition process – or just want to share a memory or two – please get in touch.

Thank you for the opportunity to serve this tremendous organisation which has certainly left its mark on me.

With deep gratitude,

Kingsley

9 Comments

  1. Courtney on 23 March, 2017 at 9:49 pm

    Super sad, however I understand. It was an honour getting to know you and work with you. I know God has only great things in store for you. May you continue to light up any room you enter 🙂 stay awesome. Now I definitely need to fly to Joberg for a two hour lunch break of cake and deep conversation 🙂

    • Kingsley on 24 March, 2017 at 11:02 am

      Hey Courtney!
      I’m so sorry we couldn’t spend proper time together when you came to visit.
      Thank you so much for the kindness and love!
      You are definitely one of the “new” rockstars. The people who carry the enke DNA from program to program. Thank you for giving of yourself so deeply, to make our work possible.
      An absolute yes to Joburg visits 🙂

  2. Mbuyi on 24 March, 2017 at 10:29 am

    It is really sad that you are leaving. I just want to let you know that you are amongst the people in the enke family who have changed my life, who have made me a better person. I will forever appreciate having met and worked with you. Best wishes in your new adventure and I know wherever you are going, you are going to make the world a better place. Farewell my King!

    • Kingsley on 26 March, 2017 at 11:22 pm

      Thank you so much Mbuyi! For always giving so much of yourself to have an impact on others. I’ll always treasure our work together.
      Gosh, I don’t really have the words to say much more, but thank you. For everything.

  3. Joy Olivier on 24 March, 2017 at 1:28 pm

    Oh my gosh Kingsley you will be missed! You can really be so proud of the amazing work you’ve done, over the many years you’ve served enke. Your commitment and leadership are exemplary, and you have really given more than 100% of your heart and smarts to this organisation. I loved working with you, you’re awesome! Wherever you go next will be so lucky to have you.

    • Kingsley on 26 March, 2017 at 11:51 pm

      Joy 🙂 This means so much coming from you. Really.
      In our time working together you so clearly role modeled leadership (you also read my audits and board packs!) Thank you so much. For everything.

      Definitely nervous and excited stepping into the unknown.

      Hope to see you before I head off! Until then, very much love.

  4. Gina Olivieri on 25 March, 2017 at 4:42 am

    KIIINNNGGG!!! I’m sure enke won’t be the same without you, but you’ll go on to more amazing things and enke will go onto greater heights thanks to your enormous contribution. Proud of you man.

    • Kingsley on 26 March, 2017 at 11:17 pm

      Thank you so much Gina! For the kind words, and for all the love and support over the years. I’ll definitely keep you posted on what comes next 🙂

  5. Thami Ncube on 27 March, 2017 at 12:40 pm

    Dear King

    I am so sad to hear this news; but I am also sure, having worked briefly with you, that “all the ducks are in a row” going forward; both for enke and for yourself! I wish you all the best in the next leg of your journey! Take care man!

Leave a Comment