PRAISE GOD FOR HIS PROVISION OF SCHOOL FEES
Twenty-three boys reported back to primary school on time with fees paid, thanks to the big hearts of some of you who dug deep in your pockets to make it possible. We also sent our 4 high school boys to boarding school and 5 others who live with a relative now but for whom we still pay fees. Sadly we found out one of these was expelled for bad behaviour, so pray that he has learned a hard lesson and will be able to get accepted at another school.
All 23 boys needed to get new sport shoes for school since the school decided to have all students wear exactly the same black canvas sport shoes. Pictured here are the boys trying on the shoes that the social worker picked out for them. Normally, if it is just one or two boys needing clothing, we like for them to have the experience of shopping in a store, but with so many needing them at once, the only way to handle it was to guess at sizes based on their school shoes and then bring the shoes to Ahadi to try on. I am thankful for a social worker who took this all in stride.
CASE IN POINT
Before we could even get our boys settled, we heard of two separate pleas from a pastor and from a local chief, each of whom knew of orphaned 9-year old boys in pathetic circumstances, living with grandmothers who couldn’t feed them regularly or see to their schooling. Our social worker and I went to check out their situations and reported to relevant authorities. One of the boys lived in a mud and stick house as squatters on land that didn’t belong to them, with a 77-year old grandma, and had to walk about 1 ½ hours to school, which he couldn’t do about half the time because he hadn’t eaten. His only shoes were slippers (flip-flops) and his uniform was dirty and tattered. His school teacher took an interest in him and reported his case to the chief a couple of times, and he eventually gave us a call to see if we could help. Simultaneously, the other boy was living in a shack made of small pieces of metal nailed together (see photo). His grandma works on a nearby farm for a pittance, but she wasn’t able to care for him.
They also live on an empty plot that doesn’t belong to them and have been warned that they will need to move at some point. Their next-door neighbour, a pastor who also is a lecturer at Daystar University where my husband works, reported the case to us, and we in turn investigated and reported the situation to the chief. A report was made and documented and given to the children’s officer who contacted the courts. So, within a couple of weeks after finding out about them, they are safe and sound at Ahadi, and we are the legal guardians for now. In the photo on the right, the teacher and both of their grandmothers accompany them to Ahadi so they know where their children are living. We make sure the children get a chance to connect with their relatives during school breaks, and we provide money for food during that time. Their two grandmothers are grateful that they will be cared for in such a nice place as Ahadi and look forward to the visits. Both boys need to go to pre-unit (kindergarten) and start from scratch with their education, though they are about 4 years older than the others in their class. Many of our Ahadi boys find themselves in that situation when they come to Ahadi because their education has been so interrupted.
The initial cost for taking in each new boy is about Ksh.30,000 ($350),and we are thankful that through donations and the school owner at Leader’s Academy giving us a discount, we will be able to pay for their fees, buy uniforms, shoes, and home clothes. Thank you to each of you who have given to make this possible.
AHADI’S ALUMNI NEWS
Collins Owino has joined Moffat Bible College, studying Community Development in a programme designed for those who want to work in the community in conjunction with a church. He has enough to pay for his first trimester but is in need of a sponsor for the following 5 trimesters, for a 2-year programme. That will be around $850 per term ($2,550 per year) from January 2015. As his ministry project, he is working in a nearby boys’ high school and will also learn to manage a dairy project. Our son, Michael Masso, developed the programme and is his mentor. Several Ahadi little boys came along to bring Collins to campus which is located in the beautiful Rift Valley since their school term had not started yet and they didn’t have a relative to stay with.
Rickson Wachira has begun a diploma in Social Work at Kenya Institute of Social Work and Community Development and has a sponsor. We thank God for our sponsors who enable our boys to continue beyond high school and get the necessary papers to get employed in the future.
Stanley Mwangi has finished his Bachelor’s studies at The Management University of Africa and was able to get a job at the place where he was doing an attachment, while he begins studying for his Professional exams.
Moses Gone, who graduated from Daystar University in logistics, also is employed but not in a job that he trained for, nor does it pay very well since it is a charity. He also needs to take courses to pass professional exams in Logistics in order to be more marketable. The classes and exams for professional certification will be about $700 each (exact figure yet to be determined) for Moses and Stanley (mentioned above) who both studied Logistics. Let me know if you are in a position to pay that one-time fee.
Francis Kiririu was discharged from Bishop Kioko hospital but continued to worsen and was admitted in Kenyatta National Hospital. His skin is now the major problem (after treating him for the abscess on his brain) and became so bad he couldn’t move, feed himself, etc. Finally, we hope the problem has been solved. It turns out that he has been using a medication for months that he is allergic to (though it was one he was given after being allergic to a different medication) and also the medicines may have made him hyper-sensitive to sunlight. Pray that a good substitute can be found and that he will begin to thrive. He is now showing signs of improvement, can sit up and feed himself and is smiling once again. (I took a photo, but my camera was recently stolen before I had time to transfer it to the computer.) Thankfully, most of the expenses for his hospitalization are covered by insurance.
Moses Otieno’s major has been discontinued at Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Techology, a reputable government university, due to the fact that it wasn’t approved by the national board. He needs to change majors to Agricultural Engineering which will require him to go year round, taking an extra tri-mester each year through 2017. His sponsor is unable to take on the extra expense which will increase his annual expenses, and requested us to find another sponsor to supplement what they are paying by about $1,500 per year. This can be divided into 3 trimesters of $500 each, from 2015 through 2017. Please let me know if you are able to make up the difference.