She Shapes Her City was co-founded  by Mia Collis and Cynara Vetch and celebrates women in Nairobi.

 She Shapes The City presents real Nairobi women; intellectuals, creatives, entrepreneurs, volunteers, wage earners.

What they share in common is that each is making a difference to this city.

Photography by Mia Collis



Teresa Njoroge 

Champion for Female Convicts 


Teresa was pursuing her childhood dream, a career in banking, when she was falsely accused of a fraudulent transaction. Sentenced to imprisonment in the High Security Langata Women’s Prison Teresa was forced to bring her 3 month old baby with her. What began as a loss of career and social standing led to her purpose in life, advocating for Kenyan women trapped in a cycle of poverty and life behind bars. Teresa is the Founder of Clean Start, which equips formerly incarcerated women with entrepreneurial skills and jobs.


Sapna Chandaria 

Co Founder of UP Magazine


Sapna comes from a highly successful entrepreneurial family but left the family business to cut her own path. Driven to tell positive stories about Nairobi she launched UP (Urban Perspective) magazine which celebrates the best that the city had to offer. Now going for 5 years UP, founded with her husband Rand, has developed into 360 experience with a print publication, online content and events where the pages of UP are “brought to life.” The latest adventure for the couple is the launch of the DXD (Disruption by Design) Awards, they want to “disrupt the problems Kenya already faces and use design to find solutions”. 


Alberta Wambua 

Executive Director for Gender Violence Recovery Center 

Alberta joined the Gender Violence Recovery Centre (GVRC) as a volunteer after
she went through a traumatic car jacking and attempted rape. Ten years on and Alberta now heads up the Centre as its Executive Director. GVRC is the leading institution tacking gender violence in the region. As well as providing free medical and counselling services for tens of thousands of women and men across East and Central Africa the centre is also at the forefront in training professionals, both in the medical profession and police force, to work with survivors of gender based violence.

Muthoni Ndonga (Drummer Queen) 

Musician & Entrepreneur 


Muthoni is a woman who wears many hats; drummer, rapper, singer, entrepreneur but all revolve around a love for music. With her traditional 6 piece set of Ohlanga drums Muthoni makes a dramatic statement on stage but mixes the Luo instrument with modern patterns and strong rap lyrics. This musician set up her own music event named Blankets & Winein response to limitations with the club and live music space in Nairobi. The event exploded and has become the benchmark for live music in the city.


Lornah Kiplagat 

World Champion Athlete  


Lornah is an elite athlete, a long distance runner winning multiple world records and 3 time Olympian. Lornah begun her career when there were few women competing professionally and carved out a path for girls to follow after her. Whilst starting her career she set up a training school for girls in Iten. Lornah is now turning her attention to those without medal winning talents and hopes to create a culture of fitness in Nairobi. Combining her years of practical experience of using sports equipment, with a Kenyan eye for colour, she has set up the first sportswear brand created by a female African athlete.


Catherine Wanjohi 

Advocate for Sex Workers  


Catherine is an advocate for sex workers across Kenya. She left her prestigious role as a headmistress of a girls school when she realized that single mothers were paying for school fees through their work in prostitution. Founding Life Bloom Services International first in Naivasha, and now Nairobi, Catherine aims to offer alternatives for women who once worked on the streets.


Ambica Shah 

Founder & Designer of Kapoeta by Ambica  





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