April 17, 2013 by Diana Coombs
Linus (security), Benja (security), Reuben (kitchen), Abraham (kitchen), Aaron (herdsman) and Mr. & Mrs. Kemei (house parents) enjoy their time away.
A little time away can refresh and strengthen a person. This is what our house parents and Kipkaren Children’s Home staff experienced when they took a day trip to the Uganda border where they were able to spend time together as a team, enjoy a new environment, browse the local shops and take time to pray. The ladies enjoyed their time as they found nice clothes, handbags and shoes at affordable prices. (more…)
November 22, 2011 by Angela Vincent
As a pastor and one of the fathers at the children’s home, it was a proud moment for me as we came together early Saturday morning for the baptism of 13 children. It was day long awaited by the children after many months of baptismal classes, study and prayer. The day had come and with it, many dark clouds and a cold wind. All of us felt the damp chill in the air as we walked 3 kilometers to the place where the baptism was to take place, the Marura River. I knew the water would be very cold, but I also knew the heart of the children. It wouldn’t matter to them. We finally got to the river and the children and I removed our socks and shoes and I rolled up my pant legs. This was the moment we all had been waiting for, especially for a boy named Derick. This young man has been through many trials, but his heart now belongs to the Lord and his focus is on his walk with the Lord. I took Derick’s hand as we entered into the icy waters of the river. In front of his peers, I asked him if he believed in Jesus as his Saviour. He looked up at me and smiled, eyes full of happiness, and confidently said, “Yes”. My heart was overjoyed to hear that simple word. Hearing it, I knew what it meant for Derick – it meant eternal life. A smile quickly appeared on my face and I said, “Then I baptize you in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit in accordance to the Holy Scriptures.” He held my hands tightly and I immersed him slowly into the river. He arose, his face beaming and as I suspected, unaffected by anything other than warm delight he felt in heart. Tears filled my eyes as I congratulated Derick and applauded this milestone in his young life. I was proud of all our kids; it was a day that will not be forgotten.
– by Jonah Chepsat (Father & Pastor at the Ilula Children’s Home)
November 15, 2011 by Angela Vincent
Eager to graduate from pre-school, seven children marched to the stage, wearing their navy blue graduation gowns and caps. Before receiving their certificates, they entertained the audience with various songs and poems that encouraged the candidates to value good character and to live successfully. One of the graduates, little Irene, stood before the crowd with hands clasped before her and further encouraged the candidates to have no fear. Moved by her message, cheers and applause immediately filled the air. After that, the graduates’ names were called one-by-one for them to come forward and receive their certificate of completion and a brightly colored tinsel necklace. Parents stood proudly behind their children as the awards were given, presenting them with flowers and words of praise. The ceremony concluded with a message to the parents to love and invest in their children and to appreciate all the good work that the Samro School had done for their children.
-Prisca Kosgei (Mom at the Ilula Children’s Home)
November 10, 2011 by Holly
The school year in Kenya begins in January and concludes with final exams in November. Students in 8th grade are required to take a national exam, which will play a key role in determining the child’s future both academically and professionally.
The Kenya Certificate of Primary Education (KCPE) is a 4 day exam that tests the students on all they have learned throughout the past 8 years. The children only get one chance to take this exam; no allowances are granted for sickness, tardiness or grievances. The result of the KCPE determines which boarding school the children will be assigned to for high school. Exam marks are usually released 3 or 4 days after the Christmas holiday. Children and parents anxiously wait to hear the scores and pray they are sufficient enough to get them into a good school. Most high schools are either public or provincial and generally offer a low quality education. So for the children to be accepted into a national school, very high marks will be needed. While the students know their exam results at the end of December, they will not know which high school they have assigned to until mid-January.
There are 775,820 national 8th grade students, referred to as candidates, this year. Less than half will get admission into high schools. The pressure is immense and the students fully understand that their future livelihoods are at stake. This year the Ilula Children’s Home has 13 candidates sitting for the KCPE. To prepare, support and encourage these students for exam week, a Prayer Day was held last Saturday at the Samro Primary School. Guardians, relatives, teachers and students came together to seek God’s help and divine intervention as the students take their exams. Please pray for our candidates, that they may have health, peace and confidence as they proceed through the next two months.
– by Laban Rono