The new academic year kicked off in January and it’s always an exciting time for us as we get to welcome new students into our program. However, the excitement is always laced with a hint of sadness as we listen to stories of children who come to seek a place in our education program.
One notable story is that of Cynthia, Cynthia grew up in Nairobi and lived with the father. The father was a provider and this meant that Cynthia had access to education and everything she needed to lead a healthy life. Unfortunately, the father got badly injured during a robbery incident and got hospitalised for a long time. This one incident changed the life of Cynthia; her mother left, she dropped out of school and had to go live with the father at their rural home.
Out of school and with no one to support her, Cynthia’s hopes to have a healthy life appeared to be slowly fading, until her auntie paid them a visit. Moved with compassion, her auntie travelled back to Nairobi with Cynthia. However, her spouse did not support this move and Cynthia did not report to school as the year started, leaving her auntie distraught.
It is at this point that our paths crossed and Cynthia was brought for admission at our transition class. A few weeks into the term and she is slowly adjusting to being back to school. Her presence in school has had a ripple effect; her father can now rest easy knowing her daughter is back in school, her auntie no longer feels like she made the wrong move bringing Cynthia to Nairobi and since Cynthia is paying no school fees and receives two meals in school, her uncle who is a casual labourer doesn’t feel the strain of taking care of an extra child.
Stories like this are reminders of the impact we create through our programs and though Cynthia’s journey is just beginning, we already see the impact of hope restored.
School is out!! We are finally done with the school year and we are excited to have plenty of time to rest and rejuvenate during the two month Christmas holiday.
We have grown in leaps and bounds. Some of us couldn’t count but now we can: we have learnt new words and concepts. We have grown in weight and height: we have sharpened our skills and talents and we have been taught lessons that continue to develop our character. We look forward to joining new classes next year and 21 of us will transition to high school.
We have been in school for 36 weeks this year and because you gave, we had two meals when we came to school. Some of us solely rely on these two meals as mum and dad are not guaranteed of a day’s work when they set out in the morning to look for casual jobs. Some of us have to share the little with other members of the household and we rarely eat to our fill. It is our hope that as we attain an education and increase our capabilities, we will break out of the cycle of poverty and our children will tell a different story. Together, we are building a different storyline.
Thank you for your continuous generous contribution and we hope that you feel valued and appreciated by us.
On 14th July, 2019 we had the opportunity to host some of Turning Point Trust’s beneficiaries at one of the Centres. The group varied from our first group of beneficiaries to some who completed high school last year. They had the opportunity to serve the students their meals, share memories with each other and some were even brave enough to share their life stories with the entire primary school.
One by one they spoke of how their lives had transformed either because of opportunities taken or missed. They spoke of their time in Turning Point and one thing everyone mentioned apart from the development of infrastructure is how the feeding program was important to them as some joined the education program because of the simple assurance that they will be served of a cup of white porridge every morning. This assurance led them to stay and receive educational support that changed the trajectory of their lives.
These stories carried with them laughter , encouragment, hope and the reminder of how much the feeding program is a part of our story and identity.
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