Letter from our Founders


Light Up Hope was founded in 2011 by Kelly and Mike Little with the Support of Discovery Christian Church after three years of being witness and individual supporters to the work Fred and Alice Afwai are doing in Kenya as well as through the process of the Littles adopting their third child from Gambella, Ethiopia.

Light Up Hope is a nonprofit global orphan initiative of Discovery, a Christian Church, a 501(c)(3) tax exempt organization. All donations are eligible for tax deduction. Please reference FEIN 84-1484070. All donations made to Light Up Hope will be used for the sole purpose of fulfilling the vision and mission of Light Up Hope.  Read more about the vision and mission of Light Up Hope>>

After witnessing the shocking difference between a well funded orphanage and one just barely getting by (financially) we felt it was time to devote our energy into finding funding for orphans who do not have an established and reliable funding source.  Over the years our vision has expanded to advocating for programming with our partner that meets the emotional needs of the children and creates a path to lift these children out of poverty as they enter adulthood

Letter from our Founders:  December 2013

We believe we have been given a mission to provide healing orphan care for children living outside their family of origin.  We believe these children deserve access to a healthy, safe and loving environment.  Much of the vision of Light Up Hope has been impacted by what we have learned while parenting our daughter who was relinquished into an orphanage at the age of two, and then welcomed into our home nine months later.

Caring for children from hard places is a personal mission for our family.  We know first hand the trauma children suffer when losing one or both parents and the struggles this creates for their physical, emotional and spiritual development, especially when they continue to live in poverty without access to safe, loving, educational and therapeutic resources.

Since 2011 we have worked alongside Hope Children’s Home in Kitale, Kenya.  Formerly known as Hands with Hope Safe House in Nairobi, Kenya.  These children are valuable human beings and they have been given an opportunity for life and education by the careful, thoughtful and loving work of Fred and Alice Afwai.  Despite unfathomable challenges the Afwais have been able to provide food, shelter and education to 30+ children; some of whom are full orphans with no living relatives and others who are in their care at the request of a parent/s who does not have the financial resources to provide for them.  These are the same reasons that our daughter was orphaned and relinquished by her birth family for inter-country adoption.  The only difference is these children do not currently have the opportunity to be adopted within Kenya or through inter-country adoption.

The current environment in Kenya does not easily allow for inter-country adoption, and the children are among millions in Kenya who have no safe kin care or foster care available to them. Their only present hope is long term group home care.   The funding for Hope Children’s Home is provided by private donations and personal donations of the Afwais.  All of these children deserve adequate nutrition, safety, education, clothing, shelter, play and to have their spiritual and psychological needs attended to.  These children are intelligent individuals with much potential if only they are given a chance at survival and a way to have their needs met.

It is our hope to find generosity across the United States to provide the healing and opportunity that every soul desires.  We hope you will stand with us as we strive to provide healing orphan care and light a path out of poverty for the children who are intrusted into our care.

Kelly and Mike Little, Co-Founders Light Up Hope

“Defend the cause of the weak and fatherless;  maintain the rights of the poor and oppressed.”  Psalm 82:3

Light Up Hope Founder, Kelly Little & Hope Children's Home Founder, Alice Afwai
Light Up Hope Founder, Kelly Little & Hope Children’s Home Founder, Alice Afwai
Light Up Hope Founder, Mike Little & Hope Children's Home Founder, Fred Afwai
Light Up Hope Founder, Mike Little & Hope Children’s Home Founder, Fred Afwai