Nakira’s World is inspired by the radical idea that diverse and inclusive STEM play is essential to learning and building curiosity.​

Meet Our Founder Winnie Karanja

As an 8-year-old, Winnie loved math. She loved to explore her neighborhood and test things with what she had around her. In 11th grade, she took her first coding course and was 1 of 2 female students and 1 of 2 students of color in the class.

She felt like an “outsider” lacking the expert gamer knowledge exclusive to white teenage boys already inducted into the coding world. What she didn’t know at this time was that these feelings of exclusion and isolation would follow her beyond the classroom. As her career progressed, it was normal for her to be “1 of 2” or “1 of few” BIPoC women in the room.

She was pushed away from the hard sciences and into the social sciences, but still held the wonder of her younger self. This wonder turned into Nakira’s World, where Winnie and her team created edu-tational STEM products, based on a young Kenyan-Immigrant -like Winnie- named Nakira.

Imagining the inclusive world of STEM for children through toys and media

Nakira is 8-year-old Winnie’s dream come true. Nakira is curious without bounds and teaches us that it is okay to want to learn about things you’re not familiar with and have fun doing so.

Most importantly, Nakira and her friends show us that we should never be curious alone.

Winnie has an BA in Early Childhood Studies and a MSc. in Development Studies from London School of Economics and Political Science.  

Forbes named Winnie among the “World’s Brightest Young Leaders” for Racial Justice & Inequality and a “30 under 30 Social Entrepreneur.” Mayor of Madison, WI Satya Rhodes- Conway proclaimed July 11 2022 as Winnie Karanja Day, citing Winnie’s dedication to public service and equity.