Wow, you must have trained them really well!

I was talking to a friend yesterday about how proud I was of the way our staff has handled this whole pandemic situation over the past two years while I have not been able to be there in person. Her response was…Wow, you must have trained them really well!And yes, we do have great systems in place to communicate daily, account for expenditures, plan our goals moving forward, etc. However, no amount of training can replace the love our staff and volunteers have for this project and the young women we are training to become confident, strong, well-qualified, self-sustaining women.

Martha has been with Kijiji Mission as our headteacher from the beginning. Her teaching credentials are outstanding and we are very blessed to have her on our team. Martha holds an advanced certificate in Kenyan sign language, allowing us to enroll hearing-impaired young women into our one-year training program.Some of you may recall that Martha and her husband, Ephantus rescued a severely disabled little boy, Elias, who was being exploited as a street beggar a little over two years ago, and have been raising him as a forever member of their family ever since. They are two amazing people.

Antoinette“Find something you love to do, and you’ll never have to work another day in your life”
Antoinette has clearly found her heart’s calling. As our administration manager, she not only does an outstanding job of maintaining the smooth running of the school, but Antoinette also has a true heart for giving back to her fellow Kenyans, often spending her weekend accompanying our volunteer team on our weekly food hamper distribution program.  She represents the epitome of the saying “Find something you love to do, and you’ll never have to work a day in your life”
Pastor Susan
The girls love our dear friend Pastor Susan. Her visits are the highlight of our week. She is our student’s big sister, mother, minister, counselor, and caring friend. When Covid first arrived and we were not allowed to have visitors, Susan missed the girls terribly, and they her as well. Susan also accompanies us on our food hamper distributions to share the word of God with the many disabled, and elderly recipients we serve each week.
When Covid was first detected in Kenya, not unlike most countries, businesses were immediately closed. Although I was stranded in Australia, I was seeing reports of people being killed at food distribution riots in the major cities, initially Nairobi and Mombasa, along with articles of mothers not being able to feed their children due to layoffs from their poorly-paid jobs, to begin with. In the communities we had previously served with our free school uniform program, we immediately started our food hamper distribution program. Ephantus was on board from day one, volunteering his vehicle and his Saturdays away from his family.
Who would have guessed back then that;
  • We would still be running this weekly program 24 months later.
  • We manage to afford to run this program every week while expanding the program to focus on communities that desperately need food assistance.
This program would have never been possible without the ongoing commitment of this dedicated man and his volunteer team. We are very blessed to have this kind, generous, caring and compassionate man as part of our team.
Kirui Kirui
Ultra marathon runner Kirui Kirui
I want to inspire people. l want girls to look at me and say:“Because of you,l didn’t give up”.
Kirui Kirui has been a valuable member of our team. While he is a volunteer member of our weekly food hamper distributions, coordinating with local area chiefs and community leaders and accompanying Antoinette, Ephantus, and the team, he also raises awareness among the communities we serve during our food hamper distribution by speaking out about and raising community awareness of the retrogressive but dangerous practices of FGM, early child marriage, violence against women and children, sodomy and homicide.
He defied the odds to run for close to a month, covering more than 1,000km while traversing all the Baringo sub-counties to raise awareness of retrogressive cultural practices, including female genital mutilation, early marriages, violence against women and children, sodomy, and homicides, among other cases in society. The practices are rife.
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I consider myself very blessed to have this great team, and also to have you as our supporter, making all of this possible. Warmest blessings,Jennifer Hughes-Bystrom