This past summer we had several visitors meeting our students and taking a tour of the communities where we work. Our Joseph’s House students took the opportunity to give back to Light Up Hope by both learning from our visitors and teaching them as well. Mike and Liz Ruggles were the “Win a Trip to Kenya” winners from our 2018 Light Up Hope Gala. They spent 10 days with us in Kenya and since Mike is a professional photographer, he choose to share his knowledge of photography and entrepreneurship with our students. He taught them about photo composition, lighting and business techniques for starting a photography business. He was such an inspiration, several of our students have started their own small businesses doing portraits for their fellow university students! When the Discovery Church mission team arrived, it was time for our students to take the lead. They brought the team on a tour of downtown Nairobi including Uhuru Park where they taught the mission trip members the joy of dance and singing and the Masai Market where they taught the mission team the skill of price negotiation! We have 4 students expected to graduate in the next twelve months and we […]
I’m very happy to share that Light Up Hope is working in collaboration with Seeds of Change Foundation from Sioux Falls, SD to sponsor the high school education of 165 girls from impoverished backgrounds across Kenya. We first started working with Seeds of Change in 2018 when they began by sponsoring one of our Joseph’s House students, Mary, and later in the year, added two additional girls for university. Since the beginning of 2019 we have been working together in preparation to add these high school students to our Light Up Hope program with funding through Seeds of Change. The girls who are joining the program have been sponsored by Seeds of Change since the start of their high school careers and we are grateful to Seeds of Change for giving us the opportunity to oversee and manage their high school careers from this point. The Light Up Hope staff has worked very hard and is continuing to work hard to ensure these girls success, including placing them in high quality government schools, purchasing new uniforms and all of the school supplies needed, as is traditional in our Light Up Hope High School Program. We are excited to see our […]
The 2019 Mission Trip with Discovery Christian Church was a success!. Relationships were formed, fun was had, dancing was a given and a must. The team was able to experience and see a small sample in the day in a life of a Kenyan women living in Kibingoti. They carried water on their backs from the river below to the village and did some farming. They also participated in a feeding program at one of the schools in Umoja that some of our LIFT kids attend. And lastly, while everyone else was watching the Lion King the mission team experienced the live version by going on a safari with some of our Joseph’s House students. Our mission trips to Kenya make an impact on those who go. I was reminded of this after one of the days visiting Kwa Njenga, a slum of Nairobi. I took the team to Gifted Prince School where they were able to meet the kids we serve, meet with the teachers and staff and some of the LIFT families. I could see on the team’s faces that getting to the school was difficult for them. They had to walk through open sewage, duck their […]
Before Clysa entered our program he was working a part time job cleaning up human and industrial sewage in Nairobi. The job was a day labor job and often he would not be paid by the company after the work was finished. Clysa initially started a small business selling clothes in the slums with a small business grant of $100 from Light Up Hope. The business faced challenges of finding customers and at the same time harassment by the local tax collectors who would try to collect taxes even on days when he had made no sales. After six months of struggling he decided he wanted to return to school and was then able to apply for the Joseph’s House Program. He is grateful for the help and is enjoying trade school this spring in food, beverage and catering. You can help support Clysa and other young adults with trade school or university education by donating today. Monthly donations of $25 or more per month help stabilize the program and guarantee the resources are there to light a path out of poverty.
It took over a year for me to be ready to post this blog, but here it is, a memoire of bringing my son, Sam, to experience the place and people we love and the sadness, fear and education we faced when he was infected with malaria. January 2015 The road is dry and dusty, so dusty that the leaves on the bushes that line the street are covered in red dirt and they look as if the bushes are dying. Underneath the green peaks out and the orange and yellow flowers add confusion to the view. The road is so bumpy that the van heaves back and forth under the strain of pot holes created during a time of great rain, now cemented into deep ruts in the road. Cradled in my arms, with his head resting against a pillow to attempt to give him some comfort is my 8 year old son, Sam. He has a fever again and he has barely eaten in two weeks. This morning I negotiated with him to eat three Ritz crackers with peanut butter. He doesn’t want to eat, though he tells me if I had the ability to give him a cheeseburger […]