In Kenya, the public transportation otherwise known as Matatus represent urban youth culture going by the art and design portrayed. They are decorated with art that tell stories. in a design industry that is dominated by men.
23-year-old Sarah Mumbi popularly known as Tsara Arts, a female artist from Mathare slum in Nairobi Kenya has stood against all the adversities of being the only female designer in a male dominated field to positively influence the culture through her bold and inspiring art.
To mark this year’s International Women’s Day, she with the support of UNICEF and the Australian Commission in Kenya, embarked on the design of a matatu inspired by stories of women and girls and women in Mathare and across greater Nairobi. Her arts feature Nobel Laureate Wangari Mathai, famous Oscars winner Lupita Nyong’o, the first lady of republic of Kenya HE. Margaret Kenyatta among others.
Born in Nairobi, her inspiration was to be a matatu driver but later fell in love with the art. She has learned to overcome a lot of challenges that come with being in a male dominated field that including sexual harassment, abuse, exploitation and discrimination.
Sarah has made a mark for women in the male dominated field. In line with this year’s celebration themed: Time is Now: Rural and Urban Activists Transforming Women’s Lives, Sarah is among the urban women in Nairobi inspiring other women and girls not to let their gender dictate their career choices through a mentorship program In partnership with UNICEF that mentors young girls in schools to venture into fields of studies that are considered male including in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM).
Through her struggle, Sarah has been an inspiration to a lot of women and girls who have often been is limited by the perception that there are specific jobs that are set aside for women and others for men.