As I indicated in previous messages, the following is from Judy Murphy, social worker/Kenya Help board member/longtime friend of Margo. Her focus is the orphanage and helping Jecinta the parish social worker.
From: “Judy Murphy” <email@example.com>
Date: June 28, 2012 11:14:14 AM GMT+03:00
Dear Friends and Family,
Things have been busy and as I don’t write every day I am just going to summarize what i have been doing.
We have done nothing regarding the house for the young mother as the men just started the building a couple of days ago. As soon as they finish we can start purchasing the things she needs. Our culture is so geared to hurry hurry and it does not happen here. A good example is the new floor for the kids dining room. They said four days and it is more like a week and a half. They finished the work today and will polish on Sunday. The problem is that the secondary kids came home yesterday and this morning and there is no room big enough to feed them all. They are so glad to be here they don’t care and we will manage.
Yesterday we went the boys school for prize day. It started and 10am and ended at 4pm. None of our boys got a prize for scholarship but the boys Jecinta recommended for Kenya Help scholarships all got prizes. She is amazing with all the work and responsibility that she is able to do such a good job finding the children in the community who are also in need of help.
David, Patrick and Daniel came home with us yesterday and the girls, Monica Esther, Magdalyn, Cynthia, Mary and and Selina came this morning. They burst into our place with hugs and joy. Actually Monica was here when I returned from Mass so she came in and we had tea and a good visit. She is beautiful and is doing well in school. Cynthia is outstanding and at the top of her class; the others are average. In fact, I was coming to the cyber cafe to start this email and they all wanted to come so we filled the place. They all know Facebook I guess. The kids are all so glad to see each other and the younger ones are glad to have them home.
We have an outing planned for Saturday and some of the children, like Michael, will join us. We are going to park on the lake that has boats, bicycles, horses and swimming. A little less fancy than in other years but it should be fun.
Margo had a friend visit last week. A very fun, interesting woman in her 40’s who is a Presbyterian minister in Tacoma Wa. She came from Ethiopia where she is in the process of adopting a little girl. She and her friend had dinner with us Friday and Saturday and then Heather stayed at the rectory and had meals with us until Tuesday. We all went into Nairobi on Tues. and braved the Maasai market without Jecinta. Ben, the parish accountant, drove us in and he helped Margo bargain but I was with Julia the matron and she had never been th the market before so I was on my own. I must say I did pretty well, I argued, walked away and did all kinds of things to get my price and was fairly successful but I am not going back without Jecinta.
The children at Mji Wa Neema go to school form 6:30am til 6:pm, 5 days a week, and they also go on Saturdays. Jecinta and I had to go to the school to get permission from the principal to take the kids out this Saturday. As we were talking to him I mentioned that school hours in the states is usually 8 to 3. He explained to me that this school had 2,500 students, 100 students per class. The teachers have to divide the classes in order to teach so half do homework while the others are taught. He also explained that many of the children are very poor, have no electricity and no table to use to study at home because the family lives in one room. The children accept the long hours and they study at night after dinner which is at 7pm. I think there is not as much studying with the dining room out of commission. Some of the kids study in their rooms but have been found sleeping in their beds. I don’t blame them, I am usually in bed before they are every night.
Our weather has been cooler this year and we have had a lot more rain. It is nice during the day and then in the late afternoon we will have a little thunder and lots of rain.
We all miss Fr. Kiriti but I think Jecinta and I are going to visit in July. It should be interesting.
Love to all, Judy