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Newsletter - Maua Street and Destitute Children's Home

Spring 2012 Newsletter from New Life Nyambene – rescuing children on the streets in Kenya

Vocational Training Centre for Street Children - Builders have made a start!

Following our hugely exciting news that PKCF and Artemis have awarded New Life Nyambene funding to establish a vocational training centre for street children in Kenya, we are delighted to report that the builders have made a start on the work.

Elevation sketch of the proposed vocational training workshop

The work on the site is progressing quickly.

Charles Westendarp, our chairman and lead architect for this construction project, visited Maua at the end of April to liaise with the builders, plumber and electrician. This was also an opportunity for him to investigate how we can reduce reliance on mains electricity by installing solar panels. Charles also held initial discussions with the Kenya team about how we can achieve our long term goal for the centre to operate as a social enterprise, generating income that will enable us to educate and give a home to more street children.

Key facts and figures on youth unemployment and barriers to education in Kenya - Why we need the Vocational Training Centre

It is particularly exciting for us this year to see the first children that we rescued back in 2000 come into adulthood. This is Patrick Kirianki who is now a self-supporting adult, trained as a mechanic and driver, and whose gratitude and love for his former home has drawn him back to help with the building of the new vocational training centre. Patrick is a wonderful testimony to the constant, patient and supportive love of the children's home staff over years. He is now a happy, hard-working gentle man, whose desire is to pass on to the younger ones the benefits which he received. Wonderful encouragement to all supporters – it works!

Patrick Kirianki today. He was one of our very first contacts, rescued as a small boy in 2000

Project management plans change amid fears of corruption

In our previous newsletter, we reported on the involvement of Nairobi based project management firm Frin Consult in liaising with our Kenyan team about the construction plans. Since then, we have had to make the tough decision not to take forward our involvement with this company. Having initially quoted us fees that were within our budget, they more recently gave cost estimates for the construction project which were far above those quoted by the local building firm in Maua. Our Kenyan building committee is concerned that Frin Consult are taking advantage of the fact that we are Westerners with limited understanding of what reasonable costs would be, and are over-charging us for the proposed work. Given the issue of corruption in Africa, we are once again made aware of the benefit of our project being a partnership between Kenya and the UK – the Kenya team's local knowledge and understanding is such a vital component to making this project a success. As a result, we have agreed that the building work is carried out by the local Maua builders and overseen by our own team in Kenya, with support from Charles Westendarp. We are confident of the team's ability to oversee the project - after all, it was they who took the lead in managing the construction of the Children's Home.

HOW YOU CAN HELP

Help us rescue more street children from starvation

As the famine crisis deepens in East Africa, rising costs of food mean we struggle even to pay for enough to eat for the children living at the Maua Street and Destitute Children’s Home. We currently do not have the funds to provide a meal to the homeless children who will attend our new vocational training centre. Can you help us meet their needs? For as little as £25 a month you could save a street child from severe malnutrition and desperate hunger. SIGN UP FOR REGULAR GIVING HERE.

Sponsor a vocational trainer

Once up and running, we hope to employ 5 vocational trainers at our new centre who will teach street children carpentry, shoe making, tailoring, knitting, hairdressing and computer skills. Current estimates are that £2,070 per year will pay wages for all five vocational trainers - that works out as about £35 per month for each trainer. Can you sponsor a vocational trainer to help lift children out of poverty by equipping them with a way to make a living? PLEASE GIVE TODAY.

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