In 2000, Alphonce Okuku and a group of community leaders established the Victoria Youth Group, out of concern for the small village of Kolunga Beach. Located on Rusinga Island in Kenya, the fishing village was in the midst of a crisis.
In 2001, they purchased property for the organization, and by 2002 the organization, with the help of vital partners, had built a Community Center, a small health clinic, latrines, a mobile solar system, and were operating a nursery school, although they did not have a structure for the school. Over the past ten years, they have partnered with many non-profit organizations and governmental agencies around the world in an attempt to support community-driven initiatives.
In direct collaboration with partners working towards sustainable programs, the Trust continues to help conquer extreme poverty by increasing opportunity and empowering the Rusinga Island Community. Along the way, a name change to Kageno Kenya Trust was used from 2005-2010. During that time, the Kenyan Trust continued to be a community asset, partnering with organizations that operate to serve the needs of the people on Rusinga Island as it did under its original Victoria Youth Group name.
In 2011, the current Board of Trustees voted to rename the organization the Rusinga Island Trust in honor of the community, the founders, and the people they serve. With one new trustee and a new name, the Trust continues to operate and support community-initiated programs more effectively than ever. With a strong growing base of volunteers, along with dedicated and essential partners, the Trust is diligently serving the area and invigorating its economy.