Wednesday, December 31, 2008
If it isn't for the continued support of the following people, Xmas Torch couldn't exist! Alot of you pray and stand with me through the preparation of the event and am eternally grateful! It is usually so stressful with the preparation and the running around to make sure that these children get nothing but the very best for just 2 days! To my parents and auntie Cathy am so grateful coz you always help me keep it together! My brother Ken and sister Kiki you are always there to support me with the work that needs done. My accountant and cousin Kelvin Murithi God bless you, you really pull it off for me! Freda and Trygve, my ROCKS throughout this process! You really saved the situation this year and no words can express my Thank You to you both! You have made Xmas Torch a part of you, you fly in to make sure you are there for the event and work hard to make sure I have all I need! Can't thank you enough, God bless you and I love you both very much! Mrs. Gitonga my mentor, mother and friend, Thank You for the faith you have in me! Thank You for helping me pick the children this year and taking time out of your very busy schedule to flag us off. God bless you mum! To my sponsors... oohh what can I say! I don't see you and more often not even speak to you for a whole year, but I show up and you are always there to support me. God bless you and I know most of you haven't had the opportunity to join us but believe me the joy is yours! I wish you can see the look on these children's faces, no money can buy that! You are all very special to me and am forever indebted to you for your support! May God bless you mightly and because you give it comes back to you in good measure pressed down shaken together and running over! Thank You! Thank You! To all you that stand with me, you know I am so grateful! God bless you. Happy New Year! Looking forward to Xmas Torch 2009!!
What a huge success with this year's Xmas Torch! We were blessed with 30 children from Jerusha Mwiraria in Gikumene and Hope in Kinoru! This year was a real challenge since I wasn't sure if I could get my holiday in December. However it all worked out and I managed again with the help of friends I know I can always count on, make it happen! It's just not about having a holiday for these kids, it's the thought that someone thought of them worthy enough to take them out of their normal circumstances! Like Kelvin Mutuma one of the children we took out this year said (in the best Vote of Thanks I have ever heard), they have had many people visit them in their orphan homes. But to think that someone actually can come and take them out on a tour is something he can't believe! "many rich people spend Xmas with each other and have no time for us anaa ntigwa" (Kimeru for the abardoned children)! Am telling you there was no dry eye in the room! Davie a 10 year old,blind, HIV positive and the most adorable child ever says to us that he has enjoyed seeing the animals!!!! He is blind but he could feel the other children screaming elephant, zebra etc...(this year we were at the Meru National Park) so to him he saw them! I promise you it is for such children that we do this every year!! These children can never be the same again that I know for sure! Am grateful for your continued support with this event and we can't stop now. I already have so many children waiting in 2009! I can only keep doing this with the support you my friends give me. For this am eternally Grateful! Happy New Year and God richly bless you!!
Tuesday, April 8, 2008
As promised here are more pictures of Xmas Torch in Kenya 2007! We are already working on 2008!!! From these pictures you will see the children playing games they had never played before, lots of dancing, "Father Xmas", and them recieving gifts from Father Xmas! But above all what you wil see is what you helped us achive last year because without most of you out there my friends and friends of friends this would never have happened! Can't say enough Thank You's!!!!
Friday, February 15, 2008
These are letters I recieved from the chidren today. I know it was Valentine's day and what a loving day this was for me to read this from my children! Who knew the school bags we bought meant so much to them or the 100 Kshs? While all these letters touched me, Christine's letter hit the nail on the head since it reminds us the conditions these children are faced with daily. She talks of having no food and remembers the plenty of food we gave them over Christmas. The truth is we made a small difference in these kids lives for 2 days but the reality is what they deal with daily like having no food. I pray that we are able to remember them in a small way each day in our prayers and in our thoughts! Please understand these are children so try to make out what they are saying in their letters. One of their co-ordinators (Jesse) put this together and Jesse God bless you! PS: FOR AN EASIER READ CLICK ON THE LETTER
Saturday, February 2, 2008
I reported good news feedback from Oasis Africa and it is really great to know that the children are safe. However, we must think of what these children have had to go through since the election chaos started. The truth of the matter is these children above all the problems they deal with on a daily basis have witnessed lots of violence and whether we like it or not it has an impact on them. I know some psychologists have brought this issue up but I'm not quite sure how many of these children will be privileged enough to get some counseling on how to deal with the aftermath of the post election violence. It is really unfair that these children have to deal with this above everything else they deal with! It is also important for all of us to note that this is nothing new (the tribal clashes) it just shows what happens when we ignore dealing with such an issue when it arises and instead it is swept under the rag! This was a disaster waiting to happen and some sick people saw an opportunity to blow it up. During the Xmas Torch it hit us that this was a problem and we did actually try to talk to some of the older boys who shocked us when they decided not to dance to a particular song simply because it was from a certain tribe! We are talking 12-14 year olds here, so imagine them having such a mind set at that age! Please bear in mind that Xmas Torch happened before the elections so that alone says alot. One of the boys said to me that is how he has been brought up and doesn't know any better therefore he can't dance to that song! I am telling you truely I haven't recovered from that shock to this day. I did bring this issue up with their respective homes and they promised to look into it. So now you tell me with all the tribal violence that has now escalated doesn't it just affirm to my 12 and 14 year old boys that they were right after all! My dear friends this is a conversation we must have as a nation! Again that aha thing that the good Dr. Phil said, "YOU'LL NEVER STAND TALLER THAN WHEN YOU STOOP LOW TO HELP A CHILD!"
I promised to update you on how the children were doing considering that most of them live in the slums where most of the chaos are rampant in Kenya. Good news from my contact is that the Oasis Africa children are doing okey infact some of them were in school just last week in Kibera. I have some pictures just waiting for approval to post them on the blog. Am yet to get word from Dandora and Eastlands where the other children are as soon as I do I promise to update you.
While you all made the Xmas Torch happen it is only fair to note some Companies and individuals whose help can't be overlooked. Apollo Njoroge-Head of Business Relationships and Dickson Kihara-Business Growth and Development of Equity Bank with your invaluable help in opening an account for Xmas Torch, Macharia of Zocom Ltd with his company gave a handsome contribution. Mr. Hossein of the Iranian Medical Center, Dr. J J Muthuri, Mr. David Rukunga, Mr. Rahim of Meru (Congratulations for being elected as a councilor in Meru), Freda M'Mbogori and Trygve Skjold for coming in from Norway a week before the Xmas Torch party and diving in to help me, Thank You guys. Martin Mbuta for all the design work. Vip Ogola for taking me shopping for the children's clothes. Eddy Kimani,Fareed Khimani and Vincent Ochieng of Capital Fm for organising and having me in your studio. My lovely auntie Cate Ikiara for allowing me to use your home as my storage and forgive me for all the mess. My cousins Kelvin, Dorine, Rosemary plus my baby sister Joy Kiki for being my 'KYM's' (Kanda ya Moko)...... this means they always helped me do alot of the hand work! Packing all the bag packs and making sure each child's name was on the bag with the right sizes for each child! My friends Collins Nyamori, Joseph Mwenda, Kirinya Kithinji, Juma of Kaymba Africa, Andrew Amadi, Paul Ojil, Bella Omino and Dr. Dennis Nturibi for always checking on my progress and reminding me it was going to be okey especially during the tough days. James Mwangi for organising a meeting with the Nairobi East Rotary club. Sally Kango'ro thank you for being my strength through this experience. Shiro Lewis in New York for the many calls and contribution! My Oman friends; Jamila and Hamood Al Lamki for making my dream come true and mking this trip possible. Armand, the Osode's - God bless you. My book club friends thank you ladies. Most of all my parents for trusting in me and giving me all their support. Above all I Thank God for giving me the strength and energy to get through this project and I look forward to another successful year. I heard this from Dr. Phil the other day, "YOU'LL NEVER STAND TALLER THAN WHEN YOU STOOP LOW TO HELP A CHILD!" THANK YOU ALL!
Wednesday, January 23, 2008
What a joy it was for the children to have Kayamba Africa perform one of their favorite song on Christmas Day! It was so much fun that we were scared for some of them (coz of how happy they were)! Ooh yes and when they finished performing the kids decided to show they too had talent! So the Kayamba guys took the front row seats and our children performed for them!!!! What a Christmas day this was for all of us!!! At some point you couldn't tell who was the child and the grown up in the house....... It is important to note that they performed at the peak of the season for them for absolutely nothing! It was all free it was their contribution to Xmas Torch! Thank You Kayamba Africa you know I love you!
Tuesday, January 22, 2008
On the way to our destination we had a stop over for the children to enjoy a good view of the Nanyuki air strip and as some of them said, "Nitasema nilishika ndege" translated "I will atleast say I touched a plane" that was a good feeling but here is what I have learnt, the joy is yours when you give while these kids were ecstatic about touching a helicopter I was overjoyed just seeing how happy they were!!
Here is the truth, getting some of these children to smile was really hard and this is all we hoped to accomplish on this trip. So on Christmas morning when they recieved their Christmas t-shirts (thanks to Mr. Cecil Miller) and the Christmas hats (thanks to Sally & Oscar Kango'ro) the joy we experienced from these children cannot be described in words! Here are our children for some they came close to smiling but hey this is what you all helped us accomplish, A SMILE!