Millions of orphans and vulnerable children struggle daily for survival. In Kenya alone, over 200 adults die daily from HIV /AIDS leaving behind children to fend for themselves or to be displaced among already overburdened neighbors or relatives. Countless other children have a parent but poverty, neglect or abuse subjects the child to deplorable condition, injuring the child’s welfare, esteem, and hope for a future or family that cares.
Empowering Lives International recognizes this present reality as an opportunity to change the course of the future by providing care and education for the children today. These children are the leaders of tomorrow and they are also children that God cares about today. In response to this opportunity ELI provides care for orphans and educational opportunities to needy children by providing healing to hurting hearts, hope for a better future, and practical skills that can change the course of a child’s life for the better.
ILULA CHILDREN’S HOME
The first of two of our Children’s Homes in Kenya was opened in 2004 and welcomed 91 orphans from the surrounding communities. This unique home has been constructed in the style of a family village and is situated next to our Skills for Life Training Center where we provide special training and opportunities for people to learn skills that will help break the cycle of poverty. We rejoice at the transformation these children have undergone since first arriving at our children’s homes. Once sick, hopeless, scared, and alone, these children are now healthy, thriving, energetic, and full of the joy of the Lord. We welcomed in 10 new children in January 2012 and are seeing our first group of children entering into their last years in high school. What a privilege it is to be a part of restoring hope in these precious children’s lives.
KIPKAREN CHILDREN’S HOME
This is the second home we built for orphans in Kenya in 2006. Currently we care for 94 children orphaned mainly because of HIV/AIDS related illnesses. Modeled after our first Children’s Home in Ilula, Kenya, we placed each child into a family that consists of parents, 12 brothers and 12 sisters. No longer considered orphans, these children are welcomed into a family and are adopted into a loving home where they can grow holistically. Not only are their daily needs met, but they are receiving a good education, being prepared for the future and learning about God’s love for them.
D.R. CONGO SCHOOL
For families in the Democratic Republic of Congo, hope for a better future has been squelched. Decades of war have scarred the people and the country has never fully recovered from the violence. The threat of more violence and war loom in the air. There is great need for hope within this country and within the people. The children of DR Congo are the leaders of tomorrow and they are the children that God cares about today. In response to offer hope to the future generations, we started a school in the Keredi slum of Bukavu, DR Congo in 2004. We serve and educate 650 children (grades 1-12) who would not have the opportunity to receive an education and hear about the love of God because of poverty that holds them back. We recognize the impact the school has had on the community as they call it a “jewel that dropped from heaven”.
SOUTH SUDAN SCHOOL
In 2006, ELI Sudan was started after Stephen Reech, a Sudanese man, returned to Sudan after the 20 plus years of war. For over two decades the war torn area of Bor has forced families to run for their lives. Devastation rolled through Southern Sudan as militant raiders from the North plundered and burned villages, killing parents and children alike. In many cases, families were split apart during flight and, in some cases, were blessed to find one another again years later in Kenyan or Ugandan refugee camps. Thousands of children have either not yet found their families or have received the unfortunate news that their families were killed during the war or died while fleeing across the country. ELI’s South Sudan School was started to help rebuild the villages that were demolished during the war and bring hope back to people. Our school educates over 300 children with the skills needed to give them a hope for a future.