Eva Muraya – A Journey of Love, Advocacy, and Inclusion as a Neurodivergent Mum

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The concept of neurodiversity celebrates the varied functioning of our brains, acknowledging that there’s no one-size-fits-all definition. While some may hesitate to rigidly classify neurodiversity, it’s crucial to recognize its fluid nature as a “moving target,” evolving with our understanding and societal context. Embracing this viewpoint as epistemically useful fosters empathy and redefines societal norms, ultimately contributing to the creation of a more compassionate world.

For Eva Muraya, this subject strikes a deeply personal chord. As a devoted mother to two remarkable adult daughters, one of whom, Zawadi,  grapples with cerebral palsy, neurodiversity is more than just a concept. It is a lived reality. Eva’s journey as an advocate for neurodiversity awareness has been both challenging and rewarding, beautifully intertwined with the joys and complexities of motherhood. Balancing her fervent passion as CEO, Brand Strategy Design (BSD) Group, she adds an intriguing layer to her narrative, showcasing her adeptness in navigating the complex dance between entrepreneurship, innovation, and maternal love.

Zawadi, a gift from God.

“Born during the Christmas season…” Eva’s eyes lit up as spoke of her daughter, “… And she truly has been a gift to us—bringing countless blessings of friendship, love, networks, and joy because of her nature and disposition.” 

While she initially struggled with the news of raising a child with cerebral palsy, particularly amidst the scant awareness surrounding such conditions twenty-seven years ago, it required immense courage and determination to ensure her daughter felt included, loved, and cared for, enabling her to flourish. Throughout the years, it has been an extraordinary journey for her as she discovered more about herself and gained invaluable lessons from her daughter. One of her proudest moments was when her daughter completed authoring her book about her cerebral palsy journey, with hopes of publishing it by the end of the year. Isn’t that amazing?

Shedding Light on Neurodiversity

The journey, marked by passion and dedication, Eva, her late Husband Mike Muraya, and parents who shared similar experiences or were within the same spectrum, began to address the issue and began to change the narrative as early as the 1990s. The establishment of the Cerebral Palsy Society of Kenya was a starting point for them. 

Today, we are witnessing the fruits of our labor, yet the wheels of progress continue to turn. Kenya’s Competency-Based Curriculum aims to embrace neurodiversity, fostering inclusivity and accommodating diverse learning styles. By acknowledging and incorporating neurodiversity into the curriculum, Kenya aims to establish an academic setting that values and caters to the distinct abilities and difficulties of each student, thereby advancing educational excellence and fairness.

Meeting Eva, one immediately recognizes her innate abilities as a genuine communicator and astute marketer. Her journey into entrepreneurship can be traced back to her days at Strathmore University in 2008, where a mere marketing class served as the fertile ground for her business idea, hastily sketched onto a napkin: BSD Group. Through perseverance and determination, her company flourished, evolving into a regional award-winning business and brand advisory firm. This conglomerate comprises four entities: Brand Strategy & Design Limited, Avid Public Relations Ltd, Whiteboard Advertising Limited, and Brandquad Africa Limited, a consultancy focused on knowledge sharing and talent development.

In conclusion, Eva Muraya’s journey as a neurodivergent mother and advocate for neurodiversity is a testament to the transformative power of love, advocacy, and inclusion. Through her personal experiences raising a daughter with cerebral palsy, Eva has not only navigated the complexities of motherhood but also spearheaded initiatives to shed light on neurodiversity and promote inclusivity. Her entrepreneurship journey with BSD Group further underscores her resilience and commitment to creating a more compassionate world, where individuals of all abilities are valued and embraced. As Kenya’s educational system evolves to accommodate neurodiversity, Eva’s story serves as an inspiring example of how passion and dedication can drive meaningful change and foster a more empathetic society.

Article written by Gertrude Wachira, Alumni Relations Office

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