KENYA - Mtwapa: Good Samaritan Society

Education for Children at Risk in the 'heart' of the sex trade

The coastal region of Kenya has the nations greatest number of children involved in sex trade due to the constant flow of international tourists local and international business men coming for holidays in the scenic cities and its environs.

The most unfortunate situation is a where destitute children are hired out as prostitutes rather than been cared for. Broken marriages where single mothers with no source of income also hire their children as prostitutes. This is more common in large cities with families that live in slums ... like those of Mtwapa.

New York Times January 13, 2009, estimated that:  "up to 30,000 girls aged between 12 and 14 are involved in commercial sexual exploitation of children. The hunt for young boys in this sex trade in known in Lamu according to this report by selling their bodies to tourists. Mombasa has been named as sex child capital."

The GOOD SAMARITAN school is located in the center of the Mtwapa slum. Simple and underfinanced, this school has 105 students under the instruction of 6 teachers.

The school was founded by Christopher Ogaisamba to both educate slum children who had no chance for schooling and to penetrate the homes of the parents. Attitudes can change and good decisions can be made through intervention.

Project Updates

  • The HOPE & GOOD SAMARITAN CENTER has officially been opened!

    After a year of dust, construction materials and a lot of hard work, the vision and the dream of an education center in the heart of the Mtwapa slums has become a reality.

    This grand event was celebrated by the 'fundis' (construction workers), students of the school, neighbours and honored guests. There was dancing, singing, acrobatics, prayers and well-wishers throughout the afternoon.

    Celebrations were followed by a love-feast where all the guests were fed with goat stew, fish, chicken and lots of rice. There was also plenty left over for the elderly neighbors who were unable to attend.

    This is the time to say "thank you" to all those who gave so generously to this center. Your investment in this community will pay dividends for generations to come!

     

     

  • It's amazing what happens when a couple of creative ladies get together. Someone donates supplies, another volunteers time, and the next thing you know, a new business is birthed! 

    73 year old Val McDonald, a retired seamstress, made a trip to Kenya from Canada. She brought donations of yarn and crochet hooks. Val and Gladys, our partner in Mtwapa, were able to sit and Gladys learned to knit an infinity scarf. In 3 weeks she has sold 3 scarves and started knitting and saving the scarves to sell at an upcoming conference. 

    You never know what amazing things will happen when you make a decision to go bless friends in another country. 

    Desire to help + creativity= a new income for friends! 

  • Children in the slums have a right to play. They may be poor, they may have to work hard outside of school hours or have a lack of opportunities ... but they all have the right to play.

    UN DECLARATION OF THE RIGHTS OF THE CHILD states: "You have the right to go to school for free, to play, and to have an equal chance to develop yourself and to learn to be responsible and useful."

    Recently a team of youth from Redding, California came to Mtwapa to engage the children of the GOOD SAMARITAN SOCIETY in games, play and entertainment.

    The children were enthralled, the leaders were blessed and the community was enriched as a result of this significant visit. Once again, it demonstrated that "it takes a village to raise a child".

  • I will be going to Mtwapa in early March and so look forward to meeting the construction workers and viewing their progress on the school construction.

    Working 6 days a week, they hope to have the walls up and the doors in. When I arrive, they will be putting on the roof.

    This project will accomodate 100 new students from the surrounding neigbourhood ... the Mtwapa, slum.

  • When foundations are being dug ... people walk by with curiosity.

    When walls begin to go up ... people begin to ask questions.

    When the Community Center is nearly completed ... people dance.

    The community was so excited about this center that they did not wait for the doors and windows to be installed. Instead, they cleaned the center and had their first meeting. Here is their report:

    "We finished the stairs and we have cleaned the new hall and the switch boxes have all been fixed, we did use it for prayer service this last Sunday and it was a great joy for everyone, we just tested a bit of what is YET TO COME when it is done. It was soo good !!!"

     

  • Hope Community Center in the center of the slum region of Mtwapa is slowly becoming a reality.

    There are many challenges and obstacles which present themselves in the building of such a community center. We have faced the challenges of funding, credible contractors, shiipment of supplies and the rising price of a 'sand' tax imposed by the government. Yet, the walls continue to rise and the first floor is about to receive a layer of concrete.

    This center will provide a main floor for church services and community training events. The second floor will provide 8 classrooms for desperately needed education development.

    We wish the Good Samaritan team well as they continue to build.

     

  • “How long, oh Lord?”

    Corruption is a flourishing industry in Kenya today.

    The beneficiaries of the proceeds are often politicians, policemen, school administrators, pastors, justice personnel, customs officials, merchants   and public offices who serve the community. Have I left anybody out?

    The obvious answer is YES. Those left out of this list are the vast majority of the population … the children, the widows and orphans, the students and the poor. All of these are the ones who carry the ‘yokes’ of oppression and try to survive in a world of blatant exploitation. Each ‘pot hole’ in the road and every child who begs for school fees is all daily reminder of corruption. Corruption is everywhere. It is systemic. It is truly toxic and the nation is slowly dying from it.

    The cry from those oppressed rings out everywhere I go: “How long, oh Lord” will the whips of the unrighteous lash our backs? “When will we ever be delivered from those who oppress us?” Victims appear in the form of courageous mothers who try to keep their children fed, street workers who sacrifice their bodies for their children’s daily needs, venders on the street sweating to make a dollar a day and intelligent youth who want opportunities to contribute their gifts to society. I have met and talked with all these groups in the last 5 days.

     

    I have HOPE.

     

    I believe in ‘transformation’. It starts with “Tea” … discussions, dialogues, reconciliation over tea.

     

    I believe in ‘displacement’ … education displaces ignorance, justice displaces injustice and etc.

     

    I believe in Kenya … a nation rich in resources, beauty and hospitality. I am working with those who are addressing injustice and sacrificially working towards their liberation from the yokes of corruption.

     

    How long? Well, it’s like waiting for my taxi driver to appear … just a little longer!

     

    Frederick Ralph Bromley

    President, HFTN

  • This 'slum' community in Mtwapa, Kenya may be poor, but there are so many children and youth with bright minds!

    They are eager to learn and develop skills, but to date the opportunity for learning has not been available.

    The GOOD SAMARITAN CENTER is being constructed to address issues of education and skills training. Here is what we want to see:

     

    • We want this to be a multipurpose hall for the community. We will be able to use the hall for Women, youth and community functions including trainings.}We will have upstairs 4 spacious classrooms.
    • The classrooms can be used during vacations for hire to groups of schools that come every April, August and December for vacation and school educational trips.
    • This will also provide job opportunities for a few community members.

    We welcome your help in the development of this facility.

  • Trinity Summer Camp takes place each summer on Okanagan Lake in British Columbia, Canada. Hunderds of children come to learn, sing, swim and water ski. Each camp focuses on their well-being and development.

    However, this year's campers have another focus ... that of less fortunate children in other parts of the world. This year, the children living in the slums of Mtwapa, Kenya.

    Campers and staff, under the leadership of Carol Wiebe and Edwin Henkel, have challenged the campers to collect cans & bottles which can be re-cycled and sold for valuable cash.

    Success! $400 has been raised for the GOOD SAMARITAN SCHOOL in the Mtwapa slum. Funds will be used to purchase school supplies for 40 students.

  • Coastal Kenya has the nation’s greatest number of children involved in sex trade due to international tourism and business. Nelson Mandela once said that education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world -- and we couldn't agree more.

    Which is why we're so excited about the Good Samaritan School. Located in the centre of the Mtwapa slum in Kenya, Good Samaritan School is helping break this tragic cycle of exploitation by providing children one of their most basic human rights: an education.

    According to the United Nations, three quarters of the world's 61 million out-of-school children live in either sub-Saharan Africa or South Asia. More than half of these children are in nations suffering from war or political instability.

    Education is essential to economic development in developing countries. Children who can read, calculate, and think critically have better economic opportunities, higher agricultural productivity, healthier families, and better reproductive health and rights.

    Fundamental educational skills form the basis for all future learning, but today too many students across the developing world are missing out.

    Help us empower children at risk in Kenya to become children of change.

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$40,980 raised
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