Tag Archives: new sponsored child

New Sponsored Child – Riziki

Thanks to a generous donation from the Dorothy Holmes Charitable Trust we have been able to start sponsoring a wonderful little girl called Riziki.

Riziki - our new sponsored child
Riziki – our new sponsored child

Rikizi is 8 years old and lives in Mtomondoni with her Mother and 2 siblings. They share their home with Riziki’s grandmother and her 7 youngest children – which makes for a very busy home!

Riziki’s mother works in a large factory near to Mtwapa where she is able to make a regular wage but as she is the sole earner in a household of 11 people it just doesn’t stretch far enough. This means that as well as working 12 hour shifts, 6 days a week she spends her solitary ‘day off’ doing odd jobs to make a little extra money. In fact, Rieder first met Riziki’s mother whilst she was doing washing for one of his neighbours.

Riziki being measured for her uniform
Riziki being measured for her uniform

Riziki has been attending school on and off since she was little but as money became more tight she was able to attended less and less which means she has fallen behind her peers. When we took her for her interview at Mtwapa Elite she was placed into KG2 which is usually for children around 5 years in age, but after just a week of school she is getting back into the swing of things and already starting to show her aptitude for mathematics. Her class teacher is giving her extra tuition whilst the younger children sleep and also after standard classes finish; this one on one tuition is really helping her to regain confidence and improve her performance.

Riziki with her new teddy bear
Riziki with her new teddy bear

Riziki is a very sweet little girl who is really enjoying the chance to go to school. In fact, she has taken to dropping in on Rieder on the way home from school just so she can show him what she has learnt during the day.

We are really excited to be sponsoring Riziki and can’t wait to see what the future will hold for her!

New Sponsored Child – Steven

We have some exciting news to share with you. Thanks to a very generous donation from the Forest of Arden Golf Club we have been able to start sponsoring another child – Steven.

Steven at home
Steven at home

We first met Steven and his mother back in 2013, when they were one of the 86 families who received christmas food parcels and mosquito nets. Since then, we have been keeping a close eye on Steven, hoping we would be able to take him onto the Milele programme.

Steven’s mother is a single parent, extremely hardworking and loving. Steven is everything to her, and she regularly sacrifices herself to make sure that he has food to eat and is able to attend some school. Without a regular income, however, it was very hard for her to keep him in education regularly.

Steven and his mum in 2013 receiving a food and mosquito net donation
Steven and his mum in 2013 receiving a food and mosquito net donation.

Thanks to the donation from the golf club, we were finally able to sponsor Steven in March 2016. Steven is a happy, energetic little boy. Every time we have been to visit Steven, he has always been out playing with his friends, whether its running and jumping playing tag, or chasing crickets outside his house. He is very friendly, with an adorable cheeky grin. Since starting in Kindergarten at Mtwapa Elite he has really started to grow in confidence, making firm friends with Saidi (another child sponsored by Milele).

Steven and his mum have gone through some very difficult times in terms of housing and food. But we are happy to say that they are now in a secure, dry and comfortable room in the same block that Saidi and his mother live in. The two mothers have quickly become very close friends and have been supporting each other, sharing food and cooking utensils as well as keeping each other company in the day while the children are at school.

Steven (right) and Saidi (centre) with Simon (Saidi's little brother - left)
Steven (right) and Saidi (centre) with Simon (Saidi’s little brother – left)

Mama Steven is really keen to run her own business, so as part of the Milele Business Grants scheme we have helped her to do this- keep your eyes peeled for a post with more detail about this soon.

With Steven doing great at his new school, the future for this family has transformed dramatically, thanks to all the hard work and kindness of the Forest of Arden golfers and their families, in helping to raise the much needed money to welcome Steven onto the Milele programme. Thank-you so much.

We are looking for sponsors for Steven! If you are interested, sponsorship costs £90 per year, you can find out more here.

Please do contact us directly at milele@live.co.uk or comment on this post to get more information. Thank-you

Thomas: New Sponsored Child!

Hello everyone,

While we were out in Kenya this time we had the opportunity to sponsor another child onto the programme. Thomas is 10 years old and is now in Standard 5 at Mtwapa Academy along with Safari and Kaingu. I think they had better watch out too, since Thomas will certainly soon be competing with them for the top spot in class!

Thomas
Thomas

Thomas is the youngest child of a family we know very well. They are extremely hardworking and intelligent, almost all of Thomas’s elder brothers and sisters having attended extremely high level secondary schools. However, the family have recently fallen on hard times. Thomas’s father, who was the main provider in the home, a dedicated and very intelligent man unfortunately passed away just less than two years ago. After his death, with a very large family and one disabled son to support,  Thomas’s mother found it very difficult to sustain school fees for her two youngest children, Thomas and George. Both were achieving very high marks and with George just months away from his final Primary Examinations she was at a loss over what to do.

Eventually she was forced to send the children away to stay with some extended family so that George could take his final exams at a free Government primary school. These schools are often hopelessly overcrowded with more than 100 children to a classs, very poor facilities, no textbooks, desks, teaching or even writing materials. George received his marks at the end of January and I am pleased to report that, in spite of everything he managed to get exceptionally high grades and was offered a place at one of the best secondary schools in the whole country.

However, Thomas was still only in Standard 4, and with another four long years of Primary education in a poor quality government school ahead of him, the whole family was concerned that this would seriously affect his marks and performance, impacting on the level of secondary school he could attend and therefore his entire future. Thanks to many of your kind donations we were able to take on Thomas as part of the Milele group and assist his mother in his education. Now she can focus all her efforts on getting George through secondary school without needing to worry about paying for Thomas’s fees too. Thomas can also look forward to a future he deserves and has worked so hard for.

Thomas in his new PE uniform
Thomas in his new PE uniform

He is a lovely boy with a fantastic sense of humour, he is great fun to be around. I am sure he will settle into life at Mtwapa Academy in no time at all and reach his academic potential.

Best friends! Thomas and Kaingu make friends on a trip to the beach!
Best friends! Thomas and Kaingu make friends on a trip to the beach!

New Sponsored Child – Saidi

The most recent new child to be sponsored is called Saidi. He is a three year old little boy who lives with his mum, 6 month old baby brother Simon and three elder sisters Aisha, Pili and Riziki in a mud hut in Mtomondoni.

Saidi’s case is by far the most extreme I have ever seen. I am not exaggerating when I say that just witnessing the hell this family were forced to live on a daily basis was incredibly difficult and emotional.

Saidi's mum with Saidi and his baby brother outside their house. The mat they are sitting on was used as a bed for mum and the five children.
Saidi’s mum with Saidi and his baby brother outside their house. The mat they are sitting on was used as a bed for mum and the five children.
Saidi's House
Saidi’s House

She currently lives in an extremely run down one room mud shack which is in serious disrepair, but she is currently not being charged any rent by the owner of the land (a distant relative of her step mother). The lady who runs the food programme for our children at school at lunchtime helps her and gives her leftover food when she can. Without her help I suspect the family would not have been able to survive this long. Regularly they do not eat and the first time I visited them I discovered they had not been able to eat a single thing for two and a half days. When they do eat they often can only afford sima or ugali (which is flour mixed with water) and they drink only salt water. The three older girls have been admitted for free to a local school run by an English sponsor, and receive free school lunches there during term time monday to friday, however food at home is a severe problem and Saidi is severely malnourished as a result. With the mother unable to eat on a regular basis her breast milk was drying up, leaving her unable to feed her six-month old baby.

Saidi's whole family inside his house
Saidi’s whole family inside his house

The first priority when I met this family was to get them an emergency food parcel within hours. I soon realised how desperate this family really was when I discovered that although they now had food, they had no plates to eat it off. It was like starting from scratch completely; they had absolutely nothing. Nowhere to store water, nowhere to sleep, nothing to eat from or to prepare food in, no clothes – nothing.

Saidi
Saidi

I was also seriously concerned about Saidi’s health. Although he was almost 3 and a half years old, we fitted him for some new clothes and he needed age 12-18 months. He weighed next to nothing and had no energy at all, falling asleep every couple of hours and unable to support his own head or to sit up because of a lack of energy. I carried him everywhere because he just simply did not have the energy to walk, and his muscles were all floppy and weak. I was extremely scared, knowing that death from malnutrition is common in this area of Kenya. Before we met her, one of our sponsored children lost a sister at a similar age to Saidi due to lack of appropriate food.

We were lucky to have an expert on hand since one of the staff members on a school exchange trip taking place at the same time as our trip had been a midwife for more than 20 years. She shared my concern and was kind enough to accompany me to the supermarket to help me find the best possible way of getting as many nutrients and vitamins into Saidi as quickly as possible. She  and one of the other staff members were also kind enough to pay for the powdered toddler follow on milk we bought. This milk is designed for children from 1 year old and is rich in iron, vitamins and minerals to increase his weight and strength. That alongside an enriched diet im sure will have him running around fit and healthy in no time.

From there it was a simple matter of getting him into school. The transformation in such a short period of time was quite incredible. Within days the formula milk was beginning to show some effects and seeing him all smart in his uniform was very emotional. Even though I have only known Saidi for a couple of weeks, I already feel extemely protective towards him and can’t wait to see him grow and go from strength to strength. His class teacher at school is a close friend of mine, and with her supervision and lots of love and care from our sponsorship co-ordinator Rieder, i’m certain he will come on in leaps and bounds!

We are looking for sponsors for all three of our new sponsored children, Linet, Peris and Saidi. Sponsorship costs just £75 per year and you can become a sponsor at any time. Get in touch now to start helping them along on their exciting new journey.

Thank-you