Tag: Kenya

Mar 6 2013

Common boy, girl names from countries where CFCA works

El Salvador

From left are Gloria, Erika and Ana, children sponsored through CFCA in El Salvador.

You’ve probably heard the English idiom, “Every Tom, Dick and Harry,” to refer to the general population.

For many parts of the world, that wouldn’t make sense because those three names are relatively unusual.

In Madagascar, for example, the idiom might read more like, “Every Haja, Mamy and Andriniaina!”

Here are some common boy and girl names from some countries and regions where CFCA works:

El Salvador, Colombia and other Latin American countries

Names such as Juan, Jose, Ana and Maria abound in Latin American countries. Some common sources of inspiration come from close relatives, famous people, Biblical names and popular foreign names.

“Many years ago you could choose a foreign name without a problem, but nowadays you have to prove the meaning and the origin when you go to get the baby’s birth certificate in the city hall,” said Naresli Calito, a CFCA staffer in El Salvador. Read more

Feb 21 2013

Helping families achieve self-sufficiency, part 1: Kenya

By Kristin Littrell, CFCA correspondent

CFCA is not a one-size-fits-all organization. We rely on our field staffs to know the families in each community, to listen to their needs and hopes, and to provide a program that empowers them to build a path out of poverty.

We give you a window into several CFCA communities, to gauge the success of the Hope for a Family sponsorship program.

Hope for a Family in Nakuru, Kenya

Patrick and Rose

Rose and Patrick proudly display some of the items they sell at their art gallery.

A stone art gallery is tucked away down a bustling street in Nakuru,Kenya. Inside, beautiful wood and glass pieces, intricately woven baskets and skillfully sewn dresses are displayed across the spacious room.

The owners, Patrick and Rose, are passionate about their work.

Like entrepreneurs around the world, they honed their skills and opened this shop as a way to provide for their family.

Patrick and Rose are part of the CFCA family in Nakuru, Kenya.

Their son, Kevin, is sponsored, and Rose is a member of a CFCA mothers group in the area. The family was able to attain a loan to start their business through Rose’s mothers group. Read more

Nov 6 2012

We ‘vote’ for children and aging people worldwide

Today is Election Day in the United States.

Penina, a CFCA sponsored child in Kenya.

Penina, a CFCA sponsored child in Kenya.

We are especially grateful today that we live in a country where we have the freedom to vote and make our voices heard.

At CFCA, we try to operate as though our sponsored friends are voting on every decision we make.

Read what some of our staff members had to say:

“When we face difficult decisions, we try to see the situation from the perspective of sponsored friends and their families. Ö How can we listen to them more closely, see CFCAís work through their eyes, amplify their voices and be guided by their wisdom?”
ó Dan Pearson, director of international programs

“For financial decisions, our platform is simple but taken very seriously: What is in the best interests of the children, youth and aging friends we are blessed to serve? For CFCA, election time comes each time a donor is considering a gift. We welcome being accountable for their vote.
ó Bill Hansen, accounting manager for the finance department

“The children, youth and elderly are present among us daily in child services through their photos and family profiles. We take great care with every detail shared about each life. We wish to present them in their best light, as we know they would vote to be presented as dignified human beings with as much to give as they will receive.”
ó Marcia Willman, director of child services

Every member of the CFCA community of compassion has a voice and a vote. We listen carefully to one another and the belief we have, one in the other, is a daily vote of confidence. This vote of confidence, this faith in one another is at the heart of sponsors walking a path into solidarity with sponsored friends and their families, who are walking a path out of poverty.”
ó Paco Wertin, CEO for CFCA

Oct 26 2012

CFCA scholars open academic club for sponsored children

Sponsored children in Kenya

Students listen attentively to the CFCA scholars during a tutoring session.

By Regina Muburu, CFCA communications correspondent for Africa

It is a hot Tuesday afternoon and sponsored children are gathered at a local CFCA office in Kenya, with their books and pens, keenly following what they are being taught.

The teachers of the day are Vincent, who is pursuing a degree in business administration and accounting, and his colleague, Kevin, who is enrolled at a local university studying for a bachelor of commerce degree.

The two students are both 23 years old and part of the CFCA Scholarship Program.

“As scholars we volunteer hours of community service to the CFCA office helping out in various duties. It is during this period that we noticed that the children in our area were not performing well [in school],” Vincent said. “Looking at the report cards as scholarship students, we felt there was a need to step in and help.”

The two scholars decided to create an academic club for sponsored children who needed extra help with their studies.

The club is facilitated by 17 scholars who choose different subjects, in which they excel, to tutor the sponsored children. These subjects include mathematics, business education, science and geography. Read more

Oct 23 2012

Never give up: Kenyan mother starts her own business

When Collins, a young boy in Kenya, joined the Hope for a Family sponsorship program, his mother Roseline embraced the CFCA mothers group and took steps to transform her family’s life.

Roseline, mother of a CFCA sponsored child

Roseline holds a scoop of millet, the grain she sells to earn additional income.

“In our group we share ideas on business ventures and we also encourage each other on personal matters. Ö Our slogan is ‘Jikaze,’ which means ‘do not give up,'” Roseline said.

Through the Hope for a Family sponsorship program, CFCA offers opportunities for families to achieve economic self-sufficiency through mothers groups and other activities.

Roseline is the secretary for her mothers group. She takes the minutes at each meeting and is also the signatory.

Through the mothers group, Roseline has been able to start her own business, something that would not have been possible without the loan she received from her mothers group last September.

Roseline used the loan to purchase 23 tins of millet, which is a type of grain grown widely around the world for cereal. Roseline re-sells the millet to earn additional income for her family.

She has since opened a bank account to save the profits she earns because she is planning to expand her business in the future.

“I would like to encourage my fellow mothers to work hard and make use of the help that CFCA gives them through the CFCA support groups,” Roseline said. “My wish is to see my children succeed in life and help the needy in society.”

Oct 18 2012

A ‘bee-utiful’ career

Busy as a bee! The phrase fits Wanjiru, mother of three children in the Hope for a Family sponsorship program, since she started harvesting honey to provide for her family.

CFCA helped Wanjiru with the protective gear she needed, and she now feels much more confident when working with the bees.

Wanjiru sells her honey locally and in different quantities so it is affordable for everyone.

Watch the video to learn more about how Wanjiru harvests honey.

Oct 11 2012

Trip to Africa: ‘Celebrate the unity of our CFCA family’

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

“Bob’s notes” are reports from CFCA President Bob Hentzen, who regularly accompanies mission awareness trip participants. You can see Bobís full update on his Facebook page.

Photo credits for Kenya and Uganda go to Regina Muburu, CFCA communications liaison for Africa. Photo credits for Madagascar go to Paul Pearce, CFCA director of global strategy.

It’s always a joy to be in touch with you, this time from Africa. Together with Paul Pearce, CFCA director of global strategy, and Karen Allemang, CFCA trips and international volunteer manager.

I had the privilege of accompanying a wonderful group of CFCA sponsors on this September 2012 journey to Kenya and Uganda.

Paul and I also visited the CFCA project in Antsirabe, Madagascar. Read more

Sep 27 2012

Sponsored youth and scholar: ‘CFCA has been like a family to me’

Sponsored youth in Kenya

CFCA sponsored child, Purity, takes her education seriously.

Nineteen-year-old Purity is strictly business when it comes to education.

“My advice to fellow students is to be serious,” Purity said.

Purity is a first-year student at South Eastern University in Kenya pursuing a bachelor’s degree in economics, with help from her sponsorship through CFCA and a CFCA scholarship.

“CFCA has helped me throughout my education by providing school fees and uniforms,” Purity said. “I have a good relationship with my sponsor and they encourage me a lot. CFCA has been like a family to me.”

Purity and her four sisters grew up in a mud house on a small piece of land in Kenya. Her mother and father are both skilled farmers and they would try to find work as casual laborers on farms.

Although Purity’s mother and father found work, the humble income they earned was hardly enough to provide for everyone in the family.

“Sometimes we would go to sleep on an empty stomach,” Purity’s mother, Martha, said.

Purity remembers the challenges she faced before sponsorship. Her parents could not afford her school fees and Purity would then be turned away from school. Martha recalls these emotional times and how much it pained her to see her daughter so sad because she could not get an education. Read more

Sep 25 2012

Strikes in Kenya affect sponsored children

CFCA sponsored child Rachel in Kenya.

CFCA sponsored child Rachel in Kenya.

Update: We just learned from this BBC news article that Kenyan schools have reopened following a three-week strike.

Recently in Kenya, teachers and other government employees have been on strike.

The strikes began with a teachers strike, but have recently grown to include several government employee groups including doctors, college lecturers and hospital workers.

Regina Mburu, CFCA communications liaison in Africa, reported that many sponsored children have been affected by the strike.

Sep 21 2012

CFCA scholar in Kenya: ‘Life changed after sponsorship’

Peter is a former sponsored child who was orphaned in childhood. In addition to facing conditions of poverty, two of his sisters have special needs.

Peter, CFCA scholar and former sponsored childDespite the challenges he has faced, Peter is positive about his life. He recently graduated from school with help from a CFCA scholarship and is studying for a degree in supply management. He hopes to be a procurement officer in a big firm someday.

Tell us about yourself.

I am 23 years old, I have five siblings, and my father and mother passed away. My grandmother is the one who has taken care of all of us.

Two of my sisters have special needs. This further complicated our life, since they needed specific care and medication.

It was difficult growing up because I lacked basic needs. In 2003, I got sponsored after my uncle told me about the CFCA sponsorship program.

It was strenuous to get school fees after my mother passed away in 2000, but my uncle and aunt offered to assist. Life changed after sponsorship; I went to a private school and performed well.

On holidays I work to help buy medicine for my sisters.

What are you doing now?

I’m studying for a diploma in supplies and management. I am in my final year. I would like to be a procurement officer. I would like to improve the livelihood of my family.

What are your future plans?

I would like to advance in my education.

What’s your message to your sponsor?

I would like to tell him that I really appreciate the support and assistance that he has offered me up to this point. Were it not for his help, I would not have been able to pursue my education and make something out of my life.

What’s your relationship with the CFCA staff?

I have a friendly relationship with them. They encourage and motivate me. I also get nutritional benefits and clothing, birthday and Christmas parties, and access to counseling.

Your advice to other sponsored youth?

They should take life seriously as they have an opportunity to change their lives. They should not take their sponsorship for granted.