Posts Tagged ‘hopes and dreams’

Looking Toward 2019

Written by Village Project Africa. Posted in Children, Education, Sponsorship, Village Project Africa

All of us at Village Project Africa are so grateful for the ways so many have supported our efforts over the last year: through gifts, sponsorships, sharing our story with others, and through prayer.  We are often asked, especially this time of year, what our biggest needs are as we look ahead. In 2019, our greatest needs and hopes are the following:

High School Student Scholarships and Sponsorships

The largest 8th grade class is ready for high school in January 2019.  If funds are available, our Heritage Primary students can continue with their education at Heritage Secondary. Several sponsors will be able to support their child through high school, but some cannot. Our dream is for all of our students to complete high school, and a  gift of any amount to the Margaret Watson Secondary School Scholarship Fund will help us achieve just that.

If you are considering a full sponsorship ($960/year, or $80/month) or a co-sponsorship ($480/year, or $40/month), please click here to see the current students who still need a sponsor.  You can use the sponsorship filter to see only the children needing the type of sponsorship you are interested in, or you can view all of the needed sponsorship types.  There will be many new 9th graders in January!

Textbooks

In January 2019, we have a great need for textbooks. Kenya is changing the national curriculum, and we must provide the required textbooks for our students in grades 1–4.  In addition, we are adding 12th grade to the high school for the first time. We need a total of 2,000 textbooks, and the cost for each is about $10. We have a dream of raising $20,000 for this needIf you love teaching or books, please consider making a donation of any size to the Library and Textbook Fund to help us provide this essential resource for our children.

Cafeteria Tables and Benches

Both schools are in serious need of tables and benches for the cafeterias. Many children in primary must sit on the floor to eat, and many of the high school students are often standing.  Each set, including a table and two benches, costs $200, and we need 40 additional sets—a total of $8,000. If you are interested in helping provide cafeteria furnishings, please donate to the Buildings, Furnishings, and Equipment Fund.  You may specify cafeteria furnishings via email.

Classroom Desks and Chairs

In January, we need a minimum of 150 additional desks and chairs for new students at both schools. Each desk and chair set costs $75, so the total amount needed is $11, 250. If you would like to help us with this need, please donate to the Buildings, Furnishings, and Equipment Fund.  You may specify desks and chairs via email.

Primary Classroom Upgrades

Many of our primary classrooms do not have ceilings. Because the roof of each classroom is metal, heavy rain creates a racket. The teachers cannot be heard above the noise, and learning is difficult. Each ceiling costs $2,000, and a minimum of six classrooms need to be upgradedOur hope is to raise $12,000 for this purpose. gift to the Buildings, Furnishings and Equipment Fund toward the installation of ceilings will be appreciated by the children and the teachers. You may specify classroom upgrades via email.

Solar Security Lights

Electricity is both expensive and unreliable. The campuses need lights in the evening for security, and our best option is to put in solar security lights. Each light costs $500, including shipping and installationWe need 25 lights for each campus, with a total cost of $25,000. Whether you are interested in providing funds for one security light or several, a donation to the Buildings, Furnishings and Equipment Fund for this purpose will help keep our campuses safe. You may specify security lights via email.

Staff Housing

There is not adequate housing in the village for our teachers. In order to appeal to the most qualified teachers and retain our current teachers, we need to provide good housing. In addition to housing for our teachers, we need to build a home for a Dorm Matron Supervisor, who will be over all dorms at the primary school. Our goal of $40,000 will build a small house and as many as 8 small apartments. This project will impact the future success of our schools. If you are interested in helping us provide good housing for our teachers, please give to the Buildings, Furnishings and Equipment Fund and specify staff housing via email.

Beds, Mattresses and Supplies for Boarders

We need 50 bunk beds ($100 each), 100 mattresses ($25 each) and supplies for 100 boarding students including sheets, pajamas, and other personal items ($50). Our total goal is $12,500.  When you give to the Building, Furnishings and Equipment Fund for this need, you will be helping children have a safe, good place to stay.  Many of them have never slept in a bed before and most have never worn pajamas! To specify your gift for dorm supplies, including if you want to donate for supplies for a specific sponsored child, please send us an email.

Public Address System for the High School

With the increase in the number of students, it is now impossible to hear the pastor and speakers during Sunday morning services and at other convocations during the week. The cost to install a PA system is $1,500. The high school gatherings and services typically have more than 200 people. Often times, boarding students at both schools have a joint service that takes place at the high school, and there are nearly 700 people in attendance. A gift for a public address system will be appreciated by the entire school! Please give to the Buildings, Furnishings and Equipment Fund and let us know its for a public address system via email.

While the needs are many, our hearts are full and grateful for where Heritage Academy is today. It is by God’s grace and blessings that 1,000 children and adults can be provided an education, good housing, medical care, and food each day. It is far better than what we could ever have hoped or imagined, and the impact you are helping to make will last for generations to come. Thank you for your generosity, prayers and for joining us in love changing lives.

Road Trip for Water

Written by lauren. Posted in Health, Stories

A group of guys from OuiLove, one of our partners, recently went on a road trip to raise awareness and, hopefully, raise funds to provide clean drinking water for the people of Makutano and other places in need around the world. They created a video, hoping to catch the eye of Coca-Cola and win $1 million dollars in donations to provide new wells in our village and others they support.

To catch the eye of Coca-Cola, the video has to go viral—the more people who see it, the more “viral” it is. Please watch the video, like the video, and share it with all your friends and family. Let’s see what a little can do—because we know little is much when God is in it!

Year End Update

Written by margaret. Posted in Children, Education, Farming, Health, Village Project Africa

2012 has been an exciting year for Village Project Africa! We have continued to see God at work in the village and are so pleased to see programs continue to blossom and grow. We are so excited to see what He has in store for us in 2013!

Here are a few highlights of the exciting things that have happened and continue to happen in the village:

  1. Heritage Academy will add 6th grade curriculum in January 2013, and accept enrollment for a new preschool class, bringing our enrollment to approximately 600 students.  Our children are healthy and happy, and they are learning.  Each term we see the test scores improving.  Recently the teachers gave their testimonies to some visitors.  We were inspired as they told, one by one, how God had called and led them to Heritage Academy.  Our school is a safe, loving, Christian educational environment.
  2. 41 students graduated from Heritage College this month with a degree to teach early childhood education. We started Heritage College two years ago with this African proverb in mind: “Educate a girl and you educate a community.”  Of the 41 graduates, 11 are girls from our village. These girls now have hope for a brighter future not only because of their education, but also because of their association with our Godly teachers and staff.    
  3. We will break ground in the coming weeks for the expanded clinic. Recently, another parent died, the father of three of our dear students.  We see this much too often.  Now our community has another widow and more fatherless children.  At the funeral, we saw fear in their eyes because their future is so uncertain.  But our Village Project community will walk with them through these darkest days. The death of this father is another affirmation of the priority to expand the clinic and improve the health care available to our community.  Thank you, Church at the Crossing, for partnering with us.
  4. Grace Community Church is growing. We see attendance of over 30 adults plus children on Sunday mornings.  Pastor Joseph and Pastor Isaac will begin teaching the congregation from the books that we used to teach the pastors’ classes.  Pray for them as they spread the Word and disciple believers.
  5. The agricultural program is growing and prospering.  Two greenhouses and the surrounding land are planted with vegetables.   We have 4 cows and more on the way.  The chickens are producing eggs and meat.  AND the bees produced the first honey! This farming program is providing nutritious meat, eggs, dairy products, and vegetables to our school children and employees. It also provides employment in the community and a small income to the school as we sell extra products in the market.
  6. We are getting electricity!!   This project was initiated by the parents of our Heritage Academy students, and is a partnership between parents, local community, and VPA donors.  Parents each gave 100 shillings and one of the neighbors is allowing the power lines to go through her farm to help reduce the cost. But it was not enough.   VPA friends joined together to finish the project, and we will soon get electricity.  This will allow opportunities for evening meetings and classes, as well as expanded curriculum such as computer training.
  7. The new multi-purpose (cafeteria/auditorium/church) building is almost completed and is already being used for school and community meetings.  It is the only building in the area that can hold such large groups. Recently, we held a parent meeting with over 250 in attendance, who fit comfortably in this beautiful building. In addition, we are completing new classrooms and administrative offices to accommodate our growing enrollment.  Often children tell us what they like best about Heritage Academy is “the buildings.”  We smile at their answer, but they really love to have a good place
    to learn.
  8. Our child sponsorship program continues to grow! We now have over 150 children sponsored and hope to have even more sponsored by this time next year. The education, nutrition, and healthcare that sponsored children have received this year have been absolutely transformative for so many children. A new online system for sponsorship will be rolled out in 2013, so stay tuned. We hope that even more children will find sponsorship—we have close to 500 children waiting for a sponsor!

We are so thankful for each of our supporters and the way you have come along beside us in so many ways to continue the work God has laid out before us. We look forward to continued and new partnerships in 2013!

We hope each and every one of you has a blessed and happy new year!

Love Changing Lives!

It’s Electric!

Written by lauren. Posted in Education, Village Project Africa

It’s such an exciting time at Heritage Academy right now! Through the support of our donors, we have been able to add new classrooms that will help us continue to add new grade levels and more students; a new multipurpose building that will serve as a cafeteria, community center, and church; and beds to our dormitories so that more vulnerable children will have a new home, a new family, and a new chance at life.

ClassroomPerhaps one of the most exciting things for Heritage Academy is that we will soon get electricity at the school! We have recently formed the Heritage Parent’s Committee, and the parents decided that they wanted to find a way to provide electricity for the school. The entire community knew how important this goal was. 

The committee asked each family to contribute 100 shillings per child for electricity.  Many  parents contributed and their participation and enthusiasm means so much to us. However, after the fundraising was complete, their donations were not enough to get the transformer and  power lines to the school.

Yesterday, we learned that some of our friends will make a gift to pay the difference.  They told Davis, our program director, to go ahead with the process and not wait any longer for a possible lower price.  Davis will go to the electric company on Monday to tell them we can now pay for the installation. There is great rejoicing and thanksgiving in the village today!

This gift will support the goals of Heritage Academy in so many ways and help us to continue to provide a world-class education to our students! The possibilities are limitless! God is so good!

Urgent Need for Sponsorship

Written by margaret. Posted in Children, Sponsorship

ButrossAbout 2 days ago, Carol and I were discussing some of the children in the school.  Carol told me about Butross Chagara and said he is an urgent case because he is severely abused by his step mother and he needs to be in the dorm.  I decided to interview him and find out for myself.  Lately, I have not been in tears as I hear the stories, but on this day I cried with him as he told his story and he cried.

He is the cutest little boy.  He is 11 years old and in class 5 in Martin’s class.  He is always in the top 5, and often number 2.  On the last exams, he was number 2 in his class even though he lives in extremely difficult circumstances.  I find it incredible.  He told me that his health is good, though he had had some chest problems but now is ok. 

He lives in Soweto with his stepmother, Violet, another brother named Benson Lomosi who is in class 4 at Heritage (who will also need a school and dorm sponsorship, but Butross’s case is the most critical) and a young step-sibling who is not in Heritage.   There is a father who lives in Nairobi, but Butross said he rarely comes home.  Butross does not know what his father does in Nairobi and he doesn’t know where his mother is—she left the family. 

Butross came to Heritage when he was in the fourth grade.  He was living with his grandmother near KIST when his father called from Nairobi and said he had to go live with his stepmother.  Butross didn’t want to go, but they made him move. When I asked him about his life at home, he said, “My step-mother tortures me.”  I thought that was a very strong word.  He says that she makes him work without rest when he is home.  She beats him and does not feed him what the other children eat.  Sometimes he sleeps in the forest because she chases him away from the home.   I asked him if he is frightened and I think this is when he started crying.  He said, “Yes, I am frightened.”  We cried together. 

Butross is really an amazing child. We want to get him in a safe situation as soon as possible and thank you for considering a sponsorship that would provide for his education and dormitory stay.

UPDATE: Butross was quickly sponsored! We are so thankful!

Please contact Lauren at lauren@villageprojectafrica.org if you are interested in sponsoring a child like Butross. Thank you!

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