Community Update

Digital Empowerment Toolkit Now Available!

At World Pulse, we recognize the need for ongoing learning—for you and for your community! Our toolkits aim to provide the resources you need to advance your social change work.

We are excited to introduce our Digital Empowerment Trainers’ Toolkit, a dynamic resource to help you bring the benefits of connecting online to women in your community. Check it out today! »

Swahili for Rafiki

Jambo Rafiki,

I have thought that will be good for me share a few swahili words since most of us will be receiving our letters from Rafiki in Kenya and will want to reply.

Swahili is the national Language in Kenya while english is the official language. Together with these two other vernacular or Mother tongues are derived from the 52 different tribes in Kenya. In Africa, swahili is spoken widely in Tanzania, Kenya, Uganda,zambia, Democratic republic of Congo, Mozambique rwanda Burundi, parts of Somali amongst other regions in Africa.

In our letter ( Barua) writing program there are a number of words that we could use may be in greetings, to know places, to know colours, time, days of the week etc. which you can share with your Friend ( Rafiki)

Before that Note that Swahili words are composed of a repeat of Consonant and vowel to make verbs, nouns and all articles of grammer. The Pronounciation follows those of English. There is no much difference. So it is as simple as Ra-fi-ki.

To start with, Let share some greeting words you may use in your Letter.

Hujambo? -How are you (to one person)
Bwana - Sir/ Mr/ gentleman
Sijambo - I am fine
Bibi - lady/ Mrs/ ( said to married woman) casually you can address a married/elderly woman as Mama
Bi - Miss/Ms (said to an unmarried woman) casually you can address an unmarried woman as Dada
Mama - Mother
Dada - Sister
Kwaheri- Bye
Tafadhali- Please
Asante- Thank you
Ninakupenda - I love you

I hope that you can enjoy using a few swahili words in your letter. In case of any questions, may a swahili word that your Rafiki used and you don't undestand the meaning, or an English word you wish to translate to Swahili, dont hesitate to ask for help.

I will share some more swahili words in the near future

Ninawapenda ( I love you all)



JaniceW's picture

Asante sana

I am so excited about receiving a letter from my rafiki and just want to thank you for this incredible opportunity to connect with a friend. It is an honor to be a part of this program. Thank you for all your hard work and giving us all a chance to make new friends in beautiful Kenya.

Qianhanlisa's picture

Hi Lin!Did you see my message

Hi Lin!Did you see my message on Fb?Have a good rest then!

Magazine »

Read global coverage through women's eyes

Inside Congo's Growing Sisterhood

Inside Congo's Growing Sisterhood

Community »

Connect with women on the ground worldwide

PAKISTAN: They Went to School and Never Came Back

PAKISTAN: They Went to School and Never Came Back

Campaigns »

Be heard at influential forums

WWW: Women Weave the Web

WWW: Women Weave the Web

Programs »

Help us train women citizen journalists

World Pulse Voices of Our Future

World Pulse Voices of Our Future

Blog »

Read the latest from World Pulse headquarters

Announcing Our Prize Winners!

Announcing Our Prize Winners!

Partners »

Join forces with our wide network of partners

Nobel Women's Initiative

Nobel Women's Initiative