Part of what I do in Kenya involves meeting with a myriad of street children. He is 16 years old from a fairly distant city where his mother and siblings live.The family is very poor. As he tells it his mother told him he was old enough now to go off and earn a living. So he came to Nakuru. He does not use glue or other drugs and would like to work. He sleeps in a small suburb in a small house that was abandoned. At 16, with jobs at a premium, he has not been able to find a job. Someone had given him some maize but he needed about 200 shilling (approximately $2.00 USD - a day's unskilled labor pay). Expanding Opportunities had his Maize meal ground so he can eat but now what for the long term? He was attending Class 7 in school. Next year he would be in the final year of primary school and complete a very important examination, the KCPE. Scores on this examination determine the number of opportunities for further education and/or employment. School is almost completed for this year.
Meeting him a second time on the streets, I was introduced to his cousin. A young man a bit older and working selling icecream. Though he cannot live with his cousin, this older relative would help him set up selling ice cream if he had a $40.00 investment for a health certificate, business license and a cooler. He would be able to make a small amount from this business and consider attending school in January. Expanding Opportunities is considering assisting this young man to establish the business and enter school in January.
This is just one story. there are many more. I do hope they give you a picture - one child at a time. .
Here are some lightly edited words from Joseph Ndegwa, a young boy at JWHS. Joseph has been with us for a couple years. He was brought to us through the Children's Department. With a difficult childhood, malnutritioned, and interrupted education, he is now well settled in the HOME. As his education has been very poor, please forgive the errors as we lightly edit.
"Hi, i would like to send my warm greetings to you. Hope is come like came the support. Lord very you so you with many blessings.
We are doing well at home.At first we were boys but now we is home.
Orphans, destitute, HIV+, vulnerable children – the children in this image live in the city dump. Often an entire single parent family lives in the dump. Fire burn plastic, rubber, batteries and other carcinogenic trash all day long. The children learn to roam the dump for the things they can sell, recycle or eat. There are many organizations working in the dump, others bring people out of the dump, some try to develop work for single mothers, some build schools for the children to attend, others take children from the dump and bring them to children’s homes. No single organization is equipped to meet all the needs. But all are working to their capacity to make a difference. That is how it will be done – one child at a time – one single parent at a time - one donor at a time. Thank you for donating to Expanding Opportunities Street Children Project.
Imam has been at JWHS for a few years. He was found on the streets of Nakuru. He was brought there by his sickly grandmother to leave him with his street hardened, drug addicted uncle as the only relative. Active and mischievous with a twinkle in his eye, he settled into the routine. He had been unable to attend school regularly, and struggled in the beginning. But now he is catching up and performing well.
He and his best buddy Amos work hard and play hard. It is great to see brothers, not by blood but by love, working and playing and even squabbling together.
He did not have a sponsor until recently. Now a church sponsors his monthly needs. We are so grateful when sponsors step forward and accept the expenses of a child. We are then able to accept more children.
These images are of Amos. He has been at the JWHS since 2007. His mother had passed away. He was living in a small mud house with an aging demtia grandfather. The grandfather loves him but is unable to care for him. He is growing fast and active. He and his friend Imam are often together finding mischief.
Amos is struggling in school but this year, 2011, he is receiving individual tutoring along with his attendance at school.
Amos does not have a sponsor. General donations to this project help to support Amos.
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