The Don Kobe School
Here in Awaata, Africa Casa do Oleiro serves the village in a variety of ways but the most rewarding is the school/church/orphanage here. Many homeless and neglected children come to receive education, food, shelter and most importantly the love of Jesus.
Recently Pastor Antonio visited the facility and met some of the boys who are new. He was encouraged to hear how well they are doing and how much their lives have changed by having the hope of Jesus and new life. They are experiencing security and love from others, many for the first time ever.
Thanks to all of you who make it possible with your prayers and financial support to bring this hope to these beautiful children. Even though you are not able to be there with them physically, they feel your love each day.
A New Life
At fifteen years old Ronald is a strong boy who has had to be resourceful and care for himself from an early age. He comes from Centre Kwanza Kitale in a family of five children, an alcoholic father and unemployed mother. After years of neglect Ronald chose to leave his family and try to find hope by begging for food and money on the streets of Kitale. Street life is rough and Ronald was often bullied, harassed, and beaten by those who are competing for the same basic needs to survive. These kids sleep on the ground and find shelter from the elements under trees and doorways. Food is scarce and many nights Ronald went to sleep hungry with no food.
Ronald remembers the day he began to wish for someone to look on him with compassion. He has yet to know the love of a Father who will be there for him. One who will provide for his needs and give him an opportunity to live life with hope. Since being accepted into the children’s home Ronald has performed well in school and is classified in primary six where he is enthusiastic to learn as much as possible. We pray that one day Ronald will accept Jesus and truly know the unconditional love of a good Father.
Meet Eliya. He is a lovely twelve year old boy who does well in school and enjoys things all boys like - soccer, games, and hanging out with friends. Eliya, along with six siblings, was cared for by his eldest sister who was seventeen when their father died after a serious illness. When his father sold the land in Amagoro to try and provide for his family, his mother left as a result of persistent disputes with her in-laws. The burden of caring for six siblings without either parent often meant that Eliya and his siblings went without food for days at a time. Soon his sister would marry to better her own situation but this left Eliya on his own and he soon found himself at the mercy of whomever would care for him. Cruel care givers and abuse from those children who did not want Eliya in their home resulted in abuse and great physical need. By God’s mercy, Pastor Stephen Juma found Eliya and asked if he could bring him to our facility to care for and show him the love of Jesus. Today Eliya has hope for life again and has the opportunity to attend school; he is currently in primary three. He is doing well and is very enthusiastic about his new life.
Ian’s was born and raised in Kibomet Kitale but his father left several years ago abandoning his wife and seven young children. Despite her heart to provide for her children Ian’s mother has faced incredible hardship. She and her children are barely surviving as her employment consist of sporadic labor with times where no employment is available. Ian found it hard to stay in a home without food and no way to pay the required fees to attend school. At just ten years old Ian decided, like so many others in his situation, to search for hope on the streets of Kitale. Ian didn’t find hope in the streets but instead found a desperate danger zone of fighting, pain, and drugs. It is easy to get caught up in street life where sniffing glue is the only way to escape the reality of hunger and hopelessness. But Ian, like all these kids, has dreams of a better life. He is in primary four now and has the opportunity to continue school. His dream is to become an engineer and have a life where there is no more need. Here at the children’s home Ian will be given that chance with a secure place to call home, education, and lots of love.
Newton is a lovely thirteen year old boy who is originally from a town called Kericho Bomet, which is about 300 km from Kitale. He was being raised by his uncle and aunt because he was abandon by his parents. Unfortunately, this living arrangement was a desperate circumstances: an abusive aunt and an uncle who is a severe alcoholic. When his aunt and uncle divorced Newton stayed with his uncle, but because of the alcoholism often Newton would go days without food. To escape the regular verbal, emotional, and sometimes physical abuse Newton plotted a desperate escape plan. Despite painful spinal injuries as a result of trauma, he managed to hide under a truck which was carrying cargo from Kericho to Kitale. With no where to go he lived on the streets. Newton had been on the streets since august 2015 until finally he found the children’s home. Newton has longed for safety and love and is glad to be off the streets. Since arriving at the home there is new life in his eyes and he says his life now has meaning. He is now in primary five with hopes of one day Newton becoming a pilot.
John, thirteen, comes from the province of Kitale (matisi-folkland). Life in the region is difficult for the residents of Kitale as it is a very poor country. To escape the daily challenges poverty brings many people turn to alcohol. John’s parents were no exception. There is a local brewery in Folkland which made it easy for John’s parents to indulge in alcohol. As a result John and his two siblings would watch his parents fight daily and were subject to extreme physical and verbal abuse, even torture which, resulted in respiratory issues. From a sheer survive mentality John ran away from home and with no where to go but the city streets. The law in the streets is “SURVIVAL OF THE FITTEST” and for a boy of then just nine years old it was very difficult. John longed for a better life and the opportunity for an education; miraculously God heard his heart’s desire. He was welcomed into the children’s home and now John sleeps in a safe and secure environment. Today John is in primary three and with hard work John has the opportunity to continue school and realize his dream of becoming a doctor. Thanks to God and the opportunity to be in the children’s home, one day John may be able to extend a helping hand to others.
Zablon is an eleven year old boy from Moi’s Bridge (kwa reli-soweto) who, in spite of his difficult upbringing, has a wonderful sense of humor. New to the home at the time of this writing we are just getting to know him. Zeblon was raised by well-wisher after loosing his mother and was forced to fend for himself on the streets. His father was raised on the streets himself and was never able to provide for Zeblon. As a result, he learned at a very young age to live a life of begging for food and money. He never had a place to stay that was safe and would never know the joy of learning or going to school. Although Zeblon has sisters who are already married they are not art of his life. He also has a brother but truthfully Zeblon has always been alone. Now that he is in the children’s home he will be able to attend school for the first time. In time, we hope to help him discover the talents God has given him. One day maybe God will use Zablon’s sense of humor to inspire others to love and laugh, the same way he has inspired us.
Emanuel comes from Kabomboi village which is on the outskirts of Kitale. Emanuel’s father was involved in an accident and died when he was still a baby. When his mother remarried she left Emanuel in the care of his grandmother. This was too heavy a burden and she was not able to provide even basic needs like food and clothing, or send him to school. Emanuel found it very hard to cope with this life and after struggling for sometime decided to leave home and live in the streets of Kitale. Sleeping in the cold with nothing to cover himself Emanuel longed for provision. Even in the midst of such struggle God’s hand has been upon him. Emanuel chose not to sniff glue to escape his problems, but instead to trust God. After being on the streets for over a year he longed to have somebody care for him. He wanted an opportunity to live a normal life, have friends, and go to school. On November 28, 2015 God answered Emanuel’s prayer and brought a US missionary named Charlene who took him off the streets and offered him a place at the children’s home. Emanuel felt a deep sense of love for the first time after meeting Charlene and her team. Now he sleeps well, has food, and is full of joy to be back in school. Emanuel is a hard worker who want much out of life including accomplishing his dream of studying business entrepreneurship. He is in primary five and Emanuel is one of the most discipline and best students in his class. He has an extremely talented artist and would thrive given the proper opportunity and training.
Part of Casa do Oleiro’s outreach is to do hospital visits and pray for the sick. During one such outreach we had the pleasure of meeting thirteen year old Kelvin. Charlene, one of the team members on this outreach, noticed a young boy whose face had been badly burned and was in the hospital’s recovery ward. After praying and chatting a bit Charlene inquired about how he ended up in the hospital. Kelvin then told the sad story of how his face was burned. He told Charlene that he was burned by his father and mother as punishment. He had come home from school and could not find any food in the house so he sneaked into the neighbor’s house and ate some food. When his parents found out they became very angry and using dry grass and kerosene they burned his face to teach him a lesson. Upon learning of this horrific incident the police intervened and took him to the hospital. Kelvin’s mother fled into exile after the incident and his father was arrested and taken to court. After the ruling of the court the children’s home was given custody of Kelvin. He is recovering from his injuries and is now back in school in primary one. He is catching up well academically and is very enthusiastic. We are glad to be able to offer Kelvin a safe home and have the opportunity to show him the love of Jesus, who can give him hope and a future.
Through The Eyes of An Oprhan
Julius lost his family when his home burned down at the age of 6. Last thing he remembers is mom cooking over the fire pit in the kitchen of their mud and straw home. Grease flew up and hit her in the eyes, she fell over the burn pit and Julius saw her clothes catch on fire. He ran outside to get his dad. Dad rushed in but never came out. Julius sat and watched his home turn to ashes and knowing his parents were inside with his baby brother. Julius sat by the ash pile for over 4 days before he decided he should look around for something to eat. No one would come and look for him, they didn't have family within a few days journey. But before leaving he sifted through the ashes. All he could find is a burnt piece of the bible, mostly the book of Exodus.
Hunger pains in his belly and weakness in his body was the feeling of "normal' to Julius. He never knew when the next meal would be and often suffered from various parasites from the stagnate puddles he would drink from. Julius prayed for the God of Moses to send him food, and often he would find that food by digging in the dirt for bugs, dead animals, or even by finding pieces of meat in the waste of larger animals. Julius wanted to serve the God of the burnt pages of his bible so he tried to live his life taking care of the animals of the field, its all he had to offer. Often Julius was on his face in worship and even more often begging for God's forgiveness because Julius would feel his attitude was ungrateful unto the Lord. He would often get upset because he lost his family and was left alone. He would get angry because no one ever looked for him, no one cared. Julius would cry himself to sleep because he never got a chance to go to school, this was all that was left for him: every day, in the brush, with the animals, fighting to survive. But then he would remember that God is taking care of him and that is all he could ask for from the creator of this world, and so he would ask for forgiveness and try his best to trust in the Lord.
Julius is one of 10's of thousands of kids that have lost their families to tragedy. The streets and the brush is full of children from the early ages of 5 and 6 that are left to fight for their lives and never knowing where the next meal will come from. It's very common for children to find meat in the feces of other animals in the bush, or by digging through the trash on the streets throughout villages. Most of the kids in the villages try to escape their reality by sniffing glue. Glue takes away hunger pains and gives them a false sense of peace. Slowly it does fry their brain and they are considered a menace to the society. It is sometimes common for the law to have a shoot to kill order for glue sniffers.
Casa do Oleiro is in the process of opening up a orphanage ,church, and a school. The mission is that no child is forgotten or rejected. Rehabilitation and restoration through Jesus the Christ will be the hope and healing for every abandoned child that has the same desires as Julius did...... to have a family and the chance of education.