…to provide a regular meal to the local orphan children. This allows the children to concentrate on their studies so they can work towards a better future that they wouldn’t otherwise have.
Life around the big tree
Village life in much of Western Kenya is hard. The village square in Mundeku is arranged round a big tree, with market stalls underneath. Villagers meet here to sell their produce – vegetables, fruit and cloth. There’s a carpenter; a small bar; an ironmonger, who makes window frames. There’s a Posho mill for grinding maize.
The staple diet is Ugali – a maize flour made into a dough to have with greens and, if you’re lucky, some meat. You can buy meat, but you need to get there early because the best bits go quickly. There’s nothing pre-packed here.
Escaping the rural poverty trap
Children play in the square – many are orphans because of AIDS or malaria – left to be cared for by extended family who give what they can – but they have very little.
Our farm is managed by Wycliffe who takes care of our chickens and 2 cows – Michelle and Nicola, who will hopefully produce calves and milk in the near future. We also grow foods like maize, kale, bananas and pawpaw and have planted 400 pine and grevillea trees for timber. Altogether this allows Wycliffe to take care of his own family and two of the young orphans (Nick & Jared) who live on the farm. The successful farm now provides work for Jackson and other labourers from the village.
The bore hole we sunk provides clean water for the whole village and is loved by the children who no longer need to walk as far as they used to for water. Surplus crops of maize and vegetables are sold in the local market providing funds for a shaded study area so the village children can have somewhere to do their homework. Wycliffe’s effective farm management is also a model for other local villagers to see what is possible.
You can make a difference
In many ways we have achieved everything we hoped for, and much more besides. And we’re not finished. Wycliffe is now involved in the scholarship programme, visiting each of the nearby children at least once each term, checking on their progress and providing additional guidance and encouragement. He’s also able to identify any problems the children might be having, deal with these quickly and identify more children for the next round of scholarships. The income is increasing each year, with more to come from produce sales and from timber which will mature over the next two years. So we’ve agreed to continue to support the project financially for two more years. Your support will help us to do even more and to help villagers find other sources of income.