Completed in 2012 and used for the first time on Valentine’s Day, 2013, the new podium at St. Clare adds to the school’s campus. Centrally located in St. Clare’s courtyard, the gift of the podium came from the estate of Mary Phelps, a Michigan woman who died in 2012. On Valentine’s Day 2013, girls from Classes 7 through Form 4 did a dance in union with over one million women world-wide. (One Billion Rising celebrated women internationally and said NO to abuse and oppression.) “Mary’s Podium” is a stage for the girls at St. Clare to showcase their many and varied talents.
In the spirit of Thanksgiving, Friends of Kenyan Orphans extends a huge asante sana to four Adrian Dominican Sisters.
In October, 2010, four Adrian Dominican sisters left Michigan for a three year mission stay at St. Clare School in Nchiru, Kenya. During their time at St. Clare, Sisters Maurine, Renee, Kathryn and Christa shared their time and talents with the girls there. Sister Maurine shared her artistic abilities with the girls as she developed an art program, which introduced the girls to drawing, painting, creating and everything in between. Sister Renee, a master gardener, taught the girls about plants and then helped the girls create amazing gardens at St. Clare. Sister Kathryn pioneered a photojournalism class teaching the girls about photography. From there the girls wrote stories to go along with their pictures. Her class then began the St. Clarion Call, a newspaper about St. Clare. Finally, Sister Christa began a counseling program with the girls. In addition, she taught a weaving class in which students learned this craft.
Though the four sisters have now returned to the United States, the girls at St. Clare and Friends of Kenyan Orphans are grateful to these four women for all they shared while they were at St. Clare. Asante Sana Sisters Maurine, Renee, Kathryn and Christa.
I realize it is Thanksgiving time in America and this year I am writing to personally express my appreciation for making 2013 a year of special blessings for the girls of St Clare Center. Your generous support has helped to make St Clare Center a place of security, love, care and education. In the spirit of your American holiday: THANK YOU.
As I look back I see we have come so far and I realize our progress has been because you cared enough to walk with these little ones. I humbly ask your continued support for these children—that you remain FRIENDS OF KENYAN ORPHANS.
I join with the children in wishing you and yours a Blessed Thanksgiving.
Fr. Francis Limo Riwa
Founder and Director
The Children’s Village
N’chiru, Kenya (East Africa)
A fifth new Friends of Kenyan Orphans’ Board member is Rich Horrigan.
As Managing Director of FirstCity Crestone LLC, Rich Horrigan has extensive experience with investing in companies in operational and financial distress. Earning an undergraduate degree from Penn State University, Rich has a wealth of experience with investments, underwriting and asset management. In addition, Rich has held positions including COO and CFO, and is a CPA. Residing in Denver, Colorado with his wife Cynthia and their three grown children, Friends of Kenyan Orphans is excited to welcome someone to the Board with such a strong financial background. Welcome Rich!
Presently Friends of Kenyan Orphans is engaging in a capital campaign in which a donor is willing to match funds up to $10,000. The matching education fund continues until Thanksgiving, with the funds going to help with post secondary education.
What better way to be thankful in the United States than to help with the education of young women who have no other options than to depend on the generosity of people like you?
Our fourth new member of the FOKO Board is Carl J. Latona.
General Partner and owner of CjL Strategies LLC, a consulting firm, which advises corporate directors, executives and senior managers on ways to strengthen their organizations by utilizing the skills within their workforce, Carl J. Latona, has a plethora of experience. As former President and CEO of Highfields, Inc., Carl worked to actively develop and administer various home-based family counseling, residential treatment and educational programs offered by Highfields. Carl oversaw a 110 person staff, managed a $4.5 million annual budged, negotiated purchaser contracts and directed fund raising and public policy agendas, which affected children and families. Carl also was a high school teacher, a teacher trainer and a coordinator of volunteer programs. A graduate of both Loyola University in Chicago and Wayne State University in Detroit, Carl is a firm believer in lifelong learning both by continuing his professional development and as a guest lecturer at various colleges and universities. Carl is married to his wife Joan and they live in Chesterfield, Michigan. Friends of Kenyan Orphans are delighted to have a person of Carl’s experience and involvement on the Board. Welcome Carl!
Once again, Addy and her friends are working to help the girls at St. Clare Centre for Girls. After Addy and her family began to sponsor a child at St. Clare, Addy wanted to do more. So she and her friends (then 8th graders) started Soap for Hope, a non-profit organization which makes and sells soap to raise money to help those in need. The soap is natural and homemade and as its web site notes, “is great for gifts and for using for yourself.” The girls sell their wares in Montclair, New Jersey, but will also ship their soaps throughout the U.S.
To learn even more about Soap for Hope, visit their web site at http://www.soapforhopenj.com.
Asante Addy to you and Soap for Hope for assisting the girls at St. Clare.
Friends of Kenyan Orphans is pleased to introduce a third new Board Member, John McManus.
Working in the commercial real estate industry since 1991, John McManus has served as a director of Cushman and Wakefield in Oakland, California since 2001. John’s work specializes in industrial properties and includes the development and implementation of marketing plans for lease properties as well as sale properties. A graduate of Bennington College (BA) and SUNY Binghamton (MA), John lives in San Francisco, California with his wife Ariel and their three children. Friends of Kenyan Orphans welcomes John to the Board and is looking forward to utilizing his excellent skills.
The twelve girls in form 4 are taking the Kenyan national tests, which began in late October. These tests take place over five weeks, with different subjects being tested each week. The girls have prepared long, hard and very well for these important exams. The results will be released in the Spring of 2014, so the girls will stay at St. Clare helping out until they are settled in higher education or elsewhere. We wish them well as they take these tests.
Continuing introducing our new Board members, Friends of Kenyan Orphans introduces Antoinette (Toni) Ford.
Holding degrees in both marine biology and business, Antoinette (Toni) Ford has a career that includes oceanographer, entrepreneur, actor, musician and White House Fellow. As an entrepreneur, Toni headed a firm granted a patent license from NASA. She then developed another technology company. Appointed by President Nixon as a White House Fellow, Toni was the first African American woman to receive this honor. Then, under President Regan, she headed the International Near East Bureau, which involved managing large-scale projects in North Africa, the Middle East and Europe. Presently, Toni is managing director of the Double Nickels Theatre Co., a Reminiscence theater group that encourages senior citizens to celebrate their legacy via theatrical performance, music, and art. Toni and her husband have an adult daughter and presently reside in Washington D.C. Friends of Kenyan Orphans is thrilled to have Toni join the Board. Welcome Toni.