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HOPE agent, The Hope Transformation Centre in Mukwa, located in the Bungoma region in Kenya runs a widow rescue program in the local community. Their goal has always been to feed and house widows in need, but recent events are presenting some unexpected challenges and they need your help.
To provide some perspective, here are excerpts from the most recent report:
“We have finally buried Fanis one of the widows that we have supported for quite long. Fanis was among the average aged widows that are on the support. She was the first widow to be built a house and be given a goat. Fanis has been staying with 4 children but 3 weeks ago 3 children left to be somewhere else because their house was very cold, with water coming out of the ground due to prolonged heavy rains. She remained with one child aged 9 years. On the 9th of June, they slept well but never woke up. It rained so heavily that night. One side of the wall of her house collapsed and fell on them, killing them instantly. She has left behind 4 children and 5 grandchildren. This family is in need of a house.”
The prolonged heavy rain in Kenya has caused a lot havoc. We have 5 other widows in Mukwa whose houses have also come down. We also have 11 pit latrines that have sunk or fallen, and therefore there is a great need for the toilets. We have 15 widows that have no beds, they spread their bedding out on the wet floors. Life has become a burden for these widows. We can save some before another tragedy strikes. Yesterday i was talking to a young man from the Kenya Red Cross and he promised me that once I have materials, he will mobilize some young folks to come and build for the widows, just for one week and the work will be over.”
If you’d like to lend your support to the widows in Mukwa, please follow the link to make a donation:
The rainy season in the Philippines runs from June to October each year with average rainfall at lower elevations of around 1000 millimeters and in higher elevations of up to 5000 millimeters. With the added risk of typhoons and tropical storms, the monsoons that sweep through the Philippines during this season every year results in a difficult time for everyone.
With the kids in the Philippines already back to school, we’re looking to assist HOPE agent, Divine Inheritance by raising funds to help keep the students dry throughout the year.
It’s important that the weather doesn’t impede the student’s ability to learn. We want to empower the children in the child soldier scholars program so they can learn and thrive, and arrive at school dry and safe. In order to do this, we want to supply them with raincoats!
A little about the program from Divine Inheritance: Our child soldier and tribal community beneficiaries are excited to enroll in their new grade level. This is the fourth year of our child soldier scholars program. Funding support has enabled us to more than double the number of scholars since our inaugural class of 40 kids. We have had 100% re-enrollment and successful advancement to the next grade since inception; with nearly a quarter of our scholars moving up with honors, recognized in the top tier of class rankings.
Learn more about the project and make a donation by clicking here:
Last month, Leah Jones, our Compliance Officer, at the HOPE head office, took a trip to Kenya to visit with some of our agents and see first-hand some of the amazing projects that are being undertaken. While the trip was off to a rocky start with some missing luggage detouring to Paris, Leah still came back with stories and pictures and we wanted to share some of her experience . . .
What made you want to take a trip to Kenya?
I’ve been interested in visiting projects since I first started volunteering in the HOPE office four years ago. I spent a lot of time traveling and experiencing other cultures in my twenties and I always had a feeling it would remain part of my life. When Patricia (HOPE Executive Director) said she wanted me to go to Kenya, I jumped at the opportunity.
What were your goals for the visit?
My main goal was relationship building with our HOPE family on the ground and gaining a first hand understanding of day to day operations. I went to listen to them share success stories, challenges, project needs, and to take some photos along the way.
I understand the trip wasn’t without its challenges?
My bag got delayed in Paris and was returned to me two weeks later! I picked it up a few hours before flying out of Kenya and went home with a bag full of clean clothes. Very grateful for those who gave me some helpful items along the way!
Which HOPE agents did you visit?
I started in Nairobi visiting Hope & Bright Future Center and Hope Gateway Education Center. From there I traveled to Kitale to spend time with Bethlehem Children’s Care Center and Out of the Ashes. I did an overnight trip to Bungoma to visit Hope Transformation Center and then ended in Mombasa at Akae Dwelling.
What stories did you hear while there?
Lots! Hoping to highlight some of them in months to come.
What was travel like within Kenya?
There’s always traffic in the city, and a lot of speed bumps on the country highways. Most of my travel was by car or plane, but my favorite was going by piki (motorcycle taxi) in Mombasa.
Did you learn anything new while there?
I was surprised to learn how long I could go with just the contents of my carry-on purse. (But I will definitely be packing dry shampoo in my next carry-on!)
What was the highlight of the trip?
The best part for me was many of the conversations I had with members of our HOPE family. It was so nice to build friendships with the people I regularly email from the office.
Will you go back?
Yes! And I’ve been told by all of our agents that I need to stay longer next time!
Look for more stories from projects that Leah visited over the coming months!
At HOPE, we’re always excited to see new projects launch. Over the next little while, we’ll be seeing four new projects launched that will help children at risk become children of change. From sustainability to education and beyond, there’s lots of amazing work being done by HOPE agents all over the world.
Here are a few highlights of the four projects . . .
PROJECT #1 - Kenya – The Children’s Transformation Project
HOPE UK is working with The Children’s Transformation Project in Kenya to build a children’s rescue center called Faith Village. The village will include several different programs including a water project which includes:
Rain water harvesting – reservoirs and storm water drains (90% complete)
Dam for large volume water storage (50% complete)
HOPE will help raise funds to complete the reservoirs and dams in order to harvest and store water for the village.
PROJECT #2 - Syria – Justice Rising – Scholarship Grants
HOPE has been working with Justice Rising in DR Congo since 2012 on several education projects. Earlier this year Justice Rising expanded their reach into Syria after site visits to Aleppo, Syria, where the need for Primary and Secondary School scholarship grants was identified.
Funds raised for this project will go toward creating scholarships so students can continue their education.
PROJECT #3 - Romania – UP Romania
UP Romania began building a Learning Center in 2010, after dedicating time with local representatives and community members to develop a project that would meet the needs of the Haghig community. Over 6000 children and young adults live in Haghig and the 5 surrounding villages. More than 60% of children drop out of school after the 8th grade, with a prospective future of becoming socially assisted, under-qualified, and unproductive members of their community. UP Romania’s goal is to create more learning and career opportunities, while offering social support to the most vulnerable members of the community, focusing on children and youth.
PROJECT #4 - Liberia – HOPE Liberia
Philip Pleiwon came through HOPE Liberia programs in Ganta when he was young. He is now Board Chair of HOPE Liberia and a successful businessman. He came up with the concept of creating a text book app for students throughout Africa to purchase school books at a reduced cost. He has spent the last three years developing a business plan and connecting with textbook companies and universities. Funds raised through HOPE will go toward developing the app in order to provide educational resources for students in Liberia.
More exciting news to follow.......
Leah is having a fabulous time in Kenya!
Hope & Bright Future School is a vibrant community within Soweto. It is a humble space full of heart with their dedicated teachers and staff serving 180 young children. Music could be heard beyond the classrooms, filling the surrounding roads and buildings with joyful sounds. A song and dance performance (by their award-winning band and choir!) were waiting for me when I arrived. It has been an encouraging two days hearing from the staff and teachers. Thank you for the warm welcome to Kenya Hope & Bright Future!
Learn more here about the center.