Hard to believe that most of the kids in this 2007 photo from the Happy Home Orphanage in Kenya are now attending high school. When they first arrived all were sick and malnourished and not one had ever attended a day of school or read a book. Today, all are preparing for the future. That’s one way to measure success.
This year our partners at the “ABCs of Sex Education,” trained 82 rural educators and provided sex education classes for more than 20,000 people. The students include everyone from teenagers to grandparents. The organization does a great job and is expanding its reach by working through local, grassroots organizations.
At the age of 12, Josephine Rotiken was told by her father that she was to be married to a man more than 20 years her senior. Today, Josephine, an accomplished guitar player, is in her fourth year of law school and has yet to marry. When she graduates in a year or so her plan is to fight for girls just like herself. Read more about Josephine’s inspiring story, and the work being done to protect other girls by our partners at Mission With A Vision, in this article published recently in the Kenyan Standard.
African Childrens Haven helps more than 700 kids lead healthier, happier lives by working with organizations founded and run by local communities. This new three-minute video produced by award-winning photo journalist Miguel Real, focuses on education and is the first in a series of videos that we’ll be releasing in the months ahead.
When school lets out, many Ethiopian teenagers are left unsupervised and are easy prey for the sex and drug trades. At the Mercy Center in the Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa, some two dozen teens – many of whom are orphans or come from single parent homes – attend after-school programs that provide tutoring, recreation and life skill training. The project, financed by donations from African Childrens Haven, helps students such as Mekedes Feyisa who recently completed high school and is now studying civil engineering. For kids who don’t go on to college or university, the Center provides counseling and job training. They also receive information on reproductive health and HIV/AIDS, information that helps keep them safe and out of harm’s way.
Our partners at Mission With A Vision in Kenya are moving quickly to achieve self-sufficiency with bumper harvests of maize and other food crops. The Mission, which is also a major producer of eggs, provides refuge and education for girls at risk of genital cutting and childhood marriage. African Childrens Haven is a proud supporter of the Mission and is working hard to find a used tractor to help expand production.
During her short life, Irene Kavere (seen here in a 2015 Christmas photo) touched the lives of all who knew her. Orphaned as a toddler, we first met Irene and her brother in 2007 at Kenya’s Happy Home Orphanage (Kenya). She brought light to all who knew her. Sadly, Irene died last week after a tragic battle to save her young life. In addition to her brother, she leaves behind her beloved Aunty and more than 30 children and staff at Happy Home.
One way to celebrate World Wildlife Day is to raise kids’ awareness about this amazing natural resource. Although many of the children we support live within a short distance of the Nairobi Game Park (click here for a video about the park), most cannot afford the entry fee. African Childrens Haven helps by organizing and financing school trips to the Park and to Nairobi’s National Museum.