There’s an African proverb that says, “The eye never forgets what the heart has seen.”

For Rod Mickels, this couldn’t be truer—from moment he first set foot in Kenya in 2002, he felt an immediate connection. He was visiting his daughter Alissa who was working for Youth with a Mission in Mombasa at the time, and she introduced him to Winnie (LAST NAME) and the kids in the community. He never forgot them—they touched his heart, and he vowed that he would be back one day.

Ten years later Rod and Alissa were in Africa and reached out to Winnie to say hello. She was in Nairobi working at an orphanage called Morning Star and invited Rod and Alissa to come meet the director and the children. The children had so little, yet were happy and hopeful for the future—they aspired to become doctors and teachers and engineers; they wanted to help the people in their communities.

That meeting sowed the seeds for The Giving Exchange. Rod knew he could make a difference by creating opportunities for these kids—not with handouts, but with education, clean water, skills, and self-sustaining income. As a businessman, he knew how to connect people with the supplies and skills they needed to build success. He reached out to his daughter Alissa Mickels Pelatan  and together, they began The Giving Exchange in 2012.

Sustainable Development

We focus on sustainable initiatives that provide opportunities for people now and in the future.

Income Streams

Whether we’re teaching people specific job skills or setting up self-sustaining businesses, we are bringing new hope to communities by creating ongoing streams of income.

Volunteer Projects

Our impact is growing! Whether you volunteer through fundraising, partner development, ongoing communications projects or by joining us in Kenya, your help is always appreciated.


We’ve been able to make a significant impact on so many lives.

Sustainable Living

Sustainable Living

Sustainable initiatives create opportunities.

  • Clean drinking water
  • Planting seeds
  • Environmental awareness
Food for Thought

Food for Thought

Give a man a fish, you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish, you feed him for a lifetime.

  • Ending hunger
  • Sustainable food sources
  • Feeding progress
Seeds of Hope

Seeds of Hope

We want to do more and you can help.

  • Planting changes
  • Building communities
  • Sharing good fortune


For those helpless childrensand people who need it every minitues.