Tag: Kenya

Sponsor a child
Sep 29 2014

“Disability is not inability”

Joseph teaches math to students in classes eight and nine.

Joseph teaches math to students in classes eight and nine.

Joseph, 22, is a sponsored student in Kenya. When he was 2, Joseph’s parents noticed that he wasn’t able to do some of the same things other children his age could. By the time he was 3, he was unable to walk or move around.

His parents took him to a local hospital, where he was diagnosed with cerebral palsy. Cerebral palsy is a neurological disorder that impairs movement and is caused by brain damage during development.

Joseph underwent surgery to help straighten his legs. He also received physical therapy and used crutches for some time. In all, he spent four years in the hospital being treated for his condition.

Joseph was finally able to join primary school at the age of 7. He was one of the best students in the class.

Joseph’s parents found it hard to get by with Joseph’s medical expenses, four children in school and no steady income. Unbound staff in their area learned of the family’s situation, and in 2002 Joseph was sponsored. The support he received from his sponsor meant his parents could continue paying for his education.

Joseph’s schooling, however,  was interrupted in fourth grade when he had to have another surgery.. He spent another year in the hospital, which meant he had to repeat fourth grade. Despite the difficulties, he continued to excel when he returned to school and even managed to score highly on the Kenya Certificate of Primary Education.

With his high scores, Joseph received a scholarship from the Jomo Kenyatta Foundation, which combined with his sponsorship benefits meant his parents could send him to a better secondary school.

The first secondary school Joseph attended wasn’t the best fit. His condition made it difficult for him to write, which made it hard to keep up with the other students. But it was the negative treatment he received from some of his classmates that was the biggest challenge.

Seeing his struggles, Joseph’s parents decided to transfer him to a school that specialized in teaching students with disabilities. Being among others who faced similar challenges boosted Joseph’s self-confidence.

Joseph, from Kenya

Joseph walks around his classroom full of students.

Joseph recently graduated secondary school with good grades, and plans to pursue a degree in business administration from Kenyatta University. While he waits to get into the university, Joseph puts his time to good use.

He volunteers at his old primary school teaching math and Kiswahili, and he helps out at the Unbound office near his home.

When giving advice to younger students, he keeps it simple. “Disability is not inability,” Joseph said. “Work hard and stay focused.”

Donations to Health help provide equipment and therapeutic devices to sponsored friends with disabilities, along with many other health related initiatives.

Apr 19 2013

What do you think of our redesigned CFCA blog?

CFCA Awareness trip to Kenya

CFCA sponsor and awareness trip traveler, Tom Weir, right, shows photos on his smartphone to his sponsored child, Purity, and her mother, Monica, in Kenya.

A little rouge goes a long way, especially when it’s got html coding behind it. Welcome to our newly renovated blog: Around the World with CFCA! Check out our new layout, enjoy larger photos of our sponsored friends and their families and navigate easily between pages. Click the link below and let us know what you think!


Read more

Mar 19 2013

Staffer shares experience voting in Kenya’s election

Regina Mburu

Regina Mburu

By Regina Mburu, CFCA communications liaison for Africa

On March 4, Kenya held a general election in which the president, senators, county governors and members of parliament were chosen. Regina Mburu, CFCA communications liaison for Africa, is from Kenya and voted in the election. Regina shares her story of voting, of patiently waiting for the results and hoping peace would prevail.

As dawn broke and the sun made its way up to brighten the rather dull skies, my country, Kenya, was ready to usher in a new era ó one that the people hoped would bring along good tidings.

As early as 4 a.m. on March 4, Kenyans were already lined up in different polling stations all over the country, eagerly waiting to cast their votes.

The atmosphere was full of excitement, but at the same time there was tension hidden behind the smiles. The events of the 2007 election, in which more than 1,000 people were killed, were still fresh on the minds of many. Read more

Mar 8 2013

Trip to Kenya: ‘Becoming an instrument of peace’

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

Heartfelt greetings from Kenya.

I am very grateful to the Kansas City awareness trip team and the staff in Kenya for all of their preparation for this journey.

Photo credits for this report go to Regina Mburu, CFCA communications liaison for Africa. Regina was with the group for the entire trip. Don’t miss her latest blog post, which features her reflection about her visit to Madagascar.

The estimated 2012 population in Kenya topped 43 million, with more than 3 million living in Nairobi, the capital and largest city. Read more

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