Religion

Kindness, generosity make better lives in Kenya possible, and more help is needed

How can we measure the full impact of acts of kindness and generosity? Immediate results can measure the short-term effect, but we can never predict how a transformed life will contribute in making the world better for generations to come.

Since the 2018 Kenya Certificate of Secondary Exam (KCSE) results were announced last December, I have wondered whether the people of this community who have supported the needy girls of Caring Hearts High School in Kenya ever perceive how they have transformed the lives of our students. That exam largely determines the future of high school students in Kenya.

Because of the contributions through Caring Hearts and Hands of Hope, those students studied without interruptions caused by lack of tuition and fees, or even of feminine hygiene supplies. Thanks to donors, the young women remained in class, with three nutritious meals a day, and within a safe and secure boarding school environment.

Says 1 Corinthians 15:58, “ ... Your labor in the Lord is not in vain.” Your kindness and generosity brought amazing results. Out of 38 students, 18 qualified for admission to public universities, and the rest were admitted to government-sponsored vocational training institutions. In the whole country only 90,377 out of 660,204 qualified to join university. That’s just 13.7%. Our school’s performance was nearly three times better than the national percentage.

But success comes with challenges. Since we bought the Caring Hearts High School Property in 2015, we have made efforts to purchase the plots of land surrounding the school compound. This blocks the establishment of businesses that might jeopardize the safety and security of our students and employees, or compromise the favorable learning environment we have established.

There is, however, a house situated next to our school in a corner where we cannot monitor whoever uses it. I had tried to meet with the owner, without success, since the construction started. In July, I learned that he has constructed it as a rental property. That made me more than nervous. If you recall, in 2014, a terrorist group attacked a university in Kenya and killed 148 students. One of the perpetrators of that massacre was arrested in the town near our school.

In another recent horrific event, more than 250 girls in a boarding school were abducted by extremists in Nigeria. It has been five years since they were abducted and 112 girls are still missing. Many of those who either escaped or were returned after the government intervened were pregnant or had babies already.

I was finally able to meet with the property owner and shared with him the background of the students we admit to our school, and the hope and great expectations they have of a better future. He agreed to sell the property to our school for $60,000. It has a modern house with indoor plumbing and other features. The house needs protective fencing, electricity and water installation.

This investment will give us a building that will be used for a variety of school functions, in addition to ensuring that there are no strangers living next to our students. This offer is a blessing and I hope you will be motivated to help purchase the house. Donations can be sent to CHHH, PO Box 7152, Boise, ID 83707, or made at caringheartsandhandsofhope.org. Caring Hearts and Hands of Hope is a 501 (c) 3 nonprofit.

The second class of senior students in our school will sit for their final high school exams in November. Please include them in your prayers, knowing that their performance will determine not only their future, but those of their families and communities.

Vincent Muli Kituku is an author and speaker for business organizations, schools and Christian groups. He is the founder of Caring Hearts and Hands of Hope and Caring Hearts High School, a vulnerable girls’ boarding school in Kenya. Contact him at (208) 376-8724 or vincent@kituku.com.

The Idaho Statesman’s weekly faith column features a rotation of writers from many different faiths and perspectives.

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