Kenya

A Kenyan’s First Thanksgiving: Reflections on His Domestic Adoption

For the first time, I’m going to be in the United States during Thanksgiving. In my country Kenya, the only holiday that attracts the kind of excitement I have witnessed would be Christmas and to a lesser extent Easter holiday. In the midst of all the excitement, I have found myself reflecting about what I am thankful for. What is it that I am thankful to God at this point in my life? This is my first semester at the University of Toledo and of course I am thankful for the opportunity to further my studies. More fundamentally though, [...]

A Kenyan’s First Thanksgiving: Reflections on His Domestic Adoption2020-05-04T12:06:24-04:00

Advocacy Efforts Propel Family-Based Care in Kenya

Child in Family Focus has been advocating for family-based care in Kenya since its inception in 2012. Cofounder and director Peter Muthui grew up in an orphanage in Nairobi and later worked as a social worker at the same home for ten years. His experiences both as a child living in an orphanage and as a social worker uniquely qualify him to champion the importance of family care for children. With a team of passionate and qualified Kenyans, Child in Family Focus is working to change perceptions about what it means to effectively care for orphans and vulnerable children in [...]

Advocacy Efforts Propel Family-Based Care in Kenya2020-05-04T12:45:14-04:00

A Place to Call Home, A Person(s) to Call Family

Millions of children in Africa are growing up in orphanages, residential care centers, and children’s homes. Most of these institutions identify themselves as “homes” and “family” to these children. But are these residential care institutions really “home” or “family”? I grew up in an institution, and it didn’t feel like a family and I didn’t have the feeling that I was home. On the contrary, the place gave me a feeling of emptiness, uncertainty, and confusion. My two siblings (younger sister and older brother) were taken to a hospital, then to an institution after our mother was killed. On her [...]

A Place to Call Home, A Person(s) to Call Family2020-05-05T00:46:12-04:00

Finding Life After Institution

In Kenya, a movement of remarkable new leaders is working to assist young adults who have aged out of institutions and are trying to find their way in life. This network of people is the Kenya Society of Careleavers (KESCA) organization, “by and for adults (18+ years), who spent all or part of their childhood in children homes, orphanages, and/or rehabilitation centers.” The systems that “raised” them often provide no mechanisms for navigating life after they leave the institution, and with no familial support network, life can be devastatingly bleak. Magnifying this is a culture in which family and community [...]

Finding Life After Institution2020-05-05T11:31:37-04:00

Staying Engaged Throughout the Year

Burke Presbyterian Church is a 600-member church located in Burke, Virginia, within commuting distance of Washington, DC. In 1988, Burke began a partnership with the churches near the rural village of Kibwezi, Kenya, to minister to those in greatest need. This relationship, now spanning over two decades, has become integral to Burke’s identity.Continue reading

Staying Engaged Throughout the Year2020-05-05T13:10:42-04:00

Lessons Learned from Peter and Paul – Not the Ones You Imagine!

Peter and Paul were the first two children I remember meeting in Kenya 10 years ago while there on a social work trip with students from Baylor University. Having my photo taken with them felt truly apostolic, I must say. Their names had a profound enough of an impact, but the tenderness of their smiles and affection was nothing if not spirit-filled. At the same time, there was an emptiness I saw in these children. It may be the result of living with an HIV+ status in an impoverished country. It may be the fact that this disease resulted in [...]

Lessons Learned from Peter and Paul – Not the Ones You Imagine!2020-05-05T12:59:56-04:00

Staying Engaged Throughout the Year

Burke Presbyterian Church is a 600-member church located in Burke, Virginia, within commuting distance of Washington, DC. In 1988, Burke began a partnership with the churches near the rural village of Kibwezi, Kenya, to minister to those in greatest need. This relationship, now spanning over two decades, has become integral to Burke’s identity. Everyone at Burke Presbyterian Church knows the word Kibwezi! Over the years, Burke’s engagement, coupled with resources mobilized by Kibwezi area churches, has supported a range of locally led initiatives helping hundreds of children and families. These initiatives have included the building and staffing of a primary [...]

Staying Engaged Throughout the Year2020-05-05T14:03:58-04:00