Expanding Opportunities

Expanding Opportunities' mission is to increase self-sufficiency and cultural awareness through educational and charitable projects for people nationally and internationally. It is a broad mission designed to be clear enough to guide and flexible enough to respond to a variety of human need.
Nov 9, 2012

UPDATE From Rabondo

Lilian, the Center Coordinator
Lilian, the Center Coordinator

The learning center is open and running. Maggie Smith was there in September. She spent days doing catalogs of the books at the library. I was there during that time and the work she did is very great. I really appreciate on behalf of the RCPUSA, the community and the Learning Center.

Though the learning center is running well, there is still more to be done and money is badly needed. Supplies are needed, for example; paper, ink cartridges, toner etc. Lilian's salary also. A pit latrine is badly needed as Lilian has to cross over to the other side of the compound. People coming to the Learning Center also need a latrine. Some maintenance is needed as well. We await the expansion of the learning center to the other available rooms. Plastering, painting and installation of electricity is necessary. The purchase of books in line with the Kenyan education curriculum will help students who cannot afford to buy them. They will be able to come to Learning Center and study.


We got a better printer and it is good in both quality and reliability compared to the others we had, but the toner it uses is very expensive.

The traffic that we had earlier went down during the power shortage then before it could rebuild, the strike occurred in schools. The schools rely on the Learning Center for services.

As we did not expect traffic to rise immediately, the progress is promising. Indeed, the Learning Center and especially the library is one of the best things in the Rabondo community and we cannot afford to lose it. It really supported students who were out of school due to the strike. They found a place in the Library at the Learning Center conducive to study.

I am sure the Learning Center will achieve self-sustainability. I expect the traffic to start building up soon. I anticipate that there will be a lot of work as the election is nearing. People will visit for various services; pictures, posters, ID processing documents etc.

Women and children are benefiting very much from the program. Women train and embrace the culture. Therefore, its continuity is important for the community.

Class and Services
Class and Services
A Computer class in sesson
A Computer class in sesson

Links:

Oct 29, 2012

ELOTO: a Determined Learner

Eloto, in the shade of the bush.
Eloto, in the shade of the bush.

Eloto: I met him under a tree.  As I wandered a new area, I was curious why some men were in the shade of a large tree and several yonger men were huddled in the sparse shade of a bush. The young men told me they cannot sit with the elders. While discussing culture norms here in this place we would build the Girl's Rescue Center, I noticed a young man intently staring at my mouth and tipping his ear and concentrating with a palpable depth.  Eloto, 19 years old, an orphan, had never been to school.  When asked if he was interested in school, there was a resounding YES.  When asked if he would go to school with young children, another resounding YES. Well that is just what happened for Eloto. He interviewed at the local primary school, traveled to town to be fitted for a custom made uniform, and was in class by Tuesday!  He took some of the expected ribbing being called an "elephant in the classroom" yet he persevered and is moving along very fast!  It has cost him more than either of us had expected though.  His uncle, with whom he lived, was angry. He will no longer care for Eloto because he cannot herd the goats; He is unable to load sand on the trucks to earn his food. He eats only the lunch served in the primary school. He sleeps outside wrapped in a blanket. 

We had located a sponsor for his basic needs in primary school, uniform, pencils, shoes, notebooks etc., but had not considered the need of his accommodation. We are currently reevaluating how we can raise the funds to send him to a boarding school or support him in a hut on a well wisher's land near the current school.

Thanks to you, global giving donors, Eloto and others with a thirst for education that surpasses the desire for money and even food, students like Eloto attend school.

Eloto, a turkana youth and warrior
Eloto, a turkana youth and warrior
Eloto, at his school interview
Eloto, at his school interview
Measuring for a uniform
Measuring for a uniform
Eloto trying on his uniform
Eloto trying on his uniform
Eloto patiently waiting to show me his progress.
Eloto patiently waiting to show me his progress.

Links:

Oct 15, 2012

Profile of JOB

Job, his grandmother and his aunt
Job, his grandmother and his aunt

Job is a mild mannered, polite, bright young man. His mother was a teacher. As a single parent she worked hard to raise him. She died when he was about two years old. He was placed with his grandmother. Expanding Opportunities was alerted to his condition when he was 8 years old. He was still living with his grandmother but his health was bad and getting worse daily. With the grandmother’s permission we met at the hospital in Nairobi for diagnosis. Among a variety of infections, it was discovered he was HIV+. While in the hospital undergoing the many tests, some of which were rather painful, we shared the story of the Biblical Job. He felt a bit of camaraderie with his namesake. After discovering his condition we began working on the best placement choice. He was with relative and then at JWHS for a few years. As he grew he began to accept responsibility and gained ability to care for his health condition. When he was in Class Seven, he desired to return to his loving grandmother. Expanding Opportunities honored that desire, reunited him with his grandmother, and continues to assist the family with his school fees, uniforms and occasional other needs. The family is very pleased with this young man. He is now studying for his Primary examination in preparation for high school. With the help of donors, Expanding Opportunities will place Job in High School and support him to completion.

Job
Job

Links:

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