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Meet the Children: Franco

Franco Mararu is eleven years old, and has been living at the Korando Center for the past two years. He had a very difficult childhood before he came to live with Mama Dolfine. Franco was born outside of wedlock, and shortly after his birth his mother left him to live with his father. Unfortunately, Franco’s father was an alcoholic, and unable to provide for his basic needs, emotionally or physically. Franco sometimes went days on end without eating, and the lack of proper nutrition led to his retarded growth. In order to survive, Franco took odd jobs looking after other people’s animals and being paid small amounts to buy his own food. On the days he attended school, he was reliant on the kindness of his classmates’ families to share their food with him. 

After hearing of his desperate situation, Mama Dolfine took Franco under her care to live at Korando. This was the beginning of a new life for Franco: at Korando he has found a loving home, three meals a day, and the opportunity to pursue his education full-time. Not only are his basic needs provided for, he is able to focus on his schooling and his ambitions for the future. Because of his struggles in early childhood, Franco is only in Grade 1 – five years behind the other students his age. Since arriving, Franco’s character and self-discipline have impressed the staff. Franco wishes to become a pilot, and dreams of someday giving back to other children in his community who have faced similar struggles. 

Letter from Mama Dolfine

I am Mama Dolfine and I wish to start by appreciating very much the help and support that we have received from Ripple Effect Project as Korando family. A lot of things have changed for the children and entire Korando even as a village because of the children who have been able to access education and many other things.

We want appreciate so much the health care insurance that was started by Ripple Effect Project, that even though now sponsored by another individual and is doing well and the children’s health is improved, we still owe it to Ripple Effect Project in as the most difficult thing is always to start the journey which you boldly started.

Students receiving porridge through the daily porridge program, established and sponsored by Ripple Effect Project.

The porridge programme for the school children is also moving on perfectly well. The children are so happy with this that they can’t afford to miss it even for one day. One major advantage is that it has acted as a way of motivating the children to come to school regularly.

 

Despite these challenges, we are trying to do the much we can in saving the crops from army worm by spraying them and also the best and major thing we still have as our hope is trust in God which can change everything even though we hear the rains are yet to go on until end of May.

Heavy rains and insect infestations have decimated many of the crops grown at the farm, including maize, above.

The process of sending in money to us has made work process easier than before as we are always sure of what we plan to do, in other words we are able to budget and plan ahead of time which has been made easy by Ripple Effect Project.

The new school building which is in process is a gift so big to imagine or express in words. We are so thankful and eagerly waiting for the commencement which we hope may start by this month or next month if late.

We got the tragedy of the car accident and thank God very much who spared the lives of everyone who was involved in this accident as no one died. Our children came out so sound and well and we thank God very much for it. We are also grateful that some friends of Better Me have fundraised to have the car repaired. May God bless them too.

As you can see, am so overwhelmed with happiness that I can write until tomorrow. I am therefore sincerely thanking all our American friends for their support and inclusion as part of their families that they spare and share with us their family budget just so that we would also have our children go to school and also eat and dress and be happy. We are sincerely happy. Our happiness as Korando family has grown bigger and more so the lesson of putting our trust only in God is so nourishing to us.

One big question I was unable to answer to the children is that “Mama, why didn’t our friends visit this time?” They were looking forward to spending time with you this May too. We have all missed you and are all sad. But we trust that next time we are able to meet.

Thank you so much and God bless you all!

Today countries are concentrating too much on efforts and means to defend their borders. Yet these countries know so little about the poverty and suffering that make the human beings who live inside such borders feel so lonely!

If instead they would worry about giving these defenseless beings some food, some shelter, some healthcare, some clothes, it is undeniable that the world would be a more peaceful and happy place to live.

Mother Teresa

Urgent Update on Tensions in Kenya

Dear Friends and Supporters of Ripple Effect Project,

The past several months have been a time of great political unrest in Kenya. If you have been listening to the news you will be aware of the increasing surge of violence. Kisumu, where the Korando Center is located is one of the major centers of protest/violence. Below are the last two updates from our friend in Kenya.

October 16, 2017 — Update from Dolfine. She has just returned from the farm. The watermelon harvest was very successful, over 1,300 watermelons! She was planning on selling them but all markets/businesses in Kisumu have been shut down, and as a result they will not be able to be sold. They will have alot of watermelon to share with others and eat but no cash harvest.

The political tensions are becoming hotter every day. Daily demonstrations are taking place in Kisumu. The police/military are ordered to shoot to kill. Each day there are several deaths, no one connected to the Center. Dolfine reported having to take off her shoes and run as three people near her were shot. Odinga has vowed not to run in the election on Oct 26, Both lead candidates seem to be fueling the violence. They are fearful for their safety and have asked for continued prayer.

In the midst of all this the students at the Center are preparing for their year-end exams.

October 18, 2017 — From Pamela:

I am okay.

Basically we are headed for an ugly Kenya after IEBC decided to now include the names of other previous candidates because Raila withdrew, but have also decided to retain his name in the ballot paper by force. Uhuru has been given the new laws from Parliament and in two days will sign it into law without a referendum. It is likely that there will be no voting in opposition areas but violence. Today it was even heightened after the minister announced the ban on demostrations. Next week, it’s daily, morning to evening. Today, two people were shot dead by police in Bondo, the small town near the our farm. Things may turn uglier than 2008 with changes in the constitution. We dearly need prayers. We are in God’s hands. We will get to the end of this finally.

PLEASE KEEP THEM IN YOUR THOUGHTS AND PRAYERS.