Keeping in touch with what is happening in the projects supported by Karibuni Children is very important. Trustees are in regular contact with project managers via email and, more recently, Zoom meetings.
Visiting the projects is also really important. Such visits by Karibuni Trustees normally take place in February and 2020 was no exception.
The Trustees involved were Joy Murphy, Nigel Roberts, Mike Johnston, David Farmer
and John Cotton. Here they are pictured with Samuel Kimaru from Methodist Church in Kenya Head Office.
The Kibra slum is Nairobi’s largest and is said to be the largest slum in Africa. The Tusaidie Watoto Nursery school is always a joy to visit. The children greatly enjoy singing and dancing.
Such visits provide opportunity to meet the full team at the project, including teachers and cooks, all ably led by Makena.
We spent some time visiting the homes of some of the children sponsored by Karibuni Children, meeting parents and guardians.
We visited Embakasi Academy. The school was closed for holidays but all the sponsored children at this project turned up to greet us.
Maxwell, pictured here with his mother Ann, was taken into sponsorship a few weeks ago. His mother depends on casual work to put food on the table and is very happy that her son is receiving square meals at school, provided by Karibuni.
Grace is grandmother to one of the sponsored children. She was delighted to receive one of the knitted blankets made by a UK supporter which one of the Trustees carried to Kenya in their suitcase.
Today we visited Limuru Academy situated in the hills north of Nairobi.
The altitude is 7,000 feet above sea level. As a result, it can be very chilly in the mornings and evenings, so the children wear warm clothes.
Many parents and guardians seek casual work in Limuru’s tea plantations.
Visits to projects often involve pleasant surprises. Bianca, who has been sponsored throughout her education, came to see us and brought a delicious cake inscribed with the words: “Thanks for your generosity”! Bianca got excellent marks at the end of Secondary school and Karibuni is now sponsoring her to study Veterinary Medicine at University.
Tharaka can be very hot, so it was a relief to hold our meeting with the project Board outside.
Joshua Katungu, our Representative in Kenya, with George Mwabu who runs the Tharaka project.
Tharaka is famous for the wicker baskets it produces. Here George Mwabu presents a collection of baskets which will be sold in the UK to raise funds for Karibuni children.
The project office at Tharaka. All the money to construct it was raised by the project. Parents, guardians and project alumni lent a hand with the building work.
Joy Murphy, a Karibuni Trustee, visiting the home of Daniel who is sponsored by Karibuni Children.
The roads around Tharaka can be rather dusty!
Karibuni sends grants three times a year to Meru North Disability Community Centre where families are empowered to care for their disabled children and are helped to access education for them. The visiting Karibuni team met members of the Centre’s team for a briefing.
We also visited the Irindiro Special Children’s Home where Karibuni provided improvement grants.
Nursery school children at Wesley Empowerment Centre, Njoro make the most of the playground equipment.
Staff at Njoro.
Zilphar was sponsored by Karibuni Children. She has an Accountancy qualification and is a regular visitor to the project. (She has subsequently joined the project’s Board of Management).
Visiting Trustees met members of the project Board
Back in Nairobi we joined Alumni from the projects in Kibra and Kawangware. Their achievements and ambitions are impressive and a powerful reminder of the transformative power of education.