Archive for December, 2011
In Kenya, the school year ends each December. At this time, St. Clare Centre for Girls honors a girl from each class who scores the highest in her class. (Class 8 students take the Kenyan National Exams and these scores are not available at this time.) The following girls each scored the highest in her class. Kudos are in order for Naitemwa Leleshep (Pre-school) Regina Lenamada (Class 1) Nasha Lemosor (Class 2), Sabina Kilinda (Class 3), Safarin Kuraki (Class 4), Elosy Ntinyari (Class 5), Kenillalh Leboiyare (Class 6), Lucy Naserian (Class 7), Nancy Kendi (Form 1) and Irene Kinya (Form 2).
For over a month, the showers, wash rooms and lavatories have been almost ready. The only thing left to be done involved the application of the tiles for the walls and floor. The problem has been finding craftsmen with the skills to do the tile work and who were also affordable. Finally, a crew was hired and the application of the tiles commenced. The hope is that this job will be completed in the next week. From there, we hope to connect the plumbing to the new septic system and then hope- hope that everything works!
We wish you a Merry Christmas and Joyful and Peaceful New Year. WE are most grateful for you loving support and compassion.
Fr. Francis Limo Riwa
The Adrian Dominican Sisters
The Staff at St. Clare
The St. Clare Girls
Pictured here are photos of the crèche set created by the children from materials they found “laying around.”
Mr. Zumba is a very busy man throughout the year, but especially at Christmas. Mr. Zumba, the music teacher at St. Clare, works hard teaching music to his students. Mr. Zumba also wrote the St. Clare anthem, which the girls sing each day and has been at St. Clare for some time, perhaps the longest. However, Mr. Z also doubles as the choir director of the parish choir at St. Rita, which is made up of students from St. Clare and St. Francis as well as parishioners from the village of Nchiru.
This is just another way in which the St. Clare staff give to the community of Nchiru.
In the picture, Mr. Z is pulling out all the stops, giving it his best by combining dance and song, extremely important parts of African culture.
The children in the Children’s Village in Nchiru have a multitude of abilities, including wonderful musical talents. The boys from St. Francis and the girls from St. Clare learned to sing and dance as very small children and these young people are great! Several of the children have become involved with the parish choir at St.Rita in Nchiru. These children are giving back their talents to the community and also interacting with folks from the local Nchiru village community.
In the photos, the choir members from St. Francis and St. Clare are interspersed with the adult choir members. The children are wearing their white uniform shirts as they clearly contribute to the musical celebration.
When Micaiah Gerber, a middle school student in Canton, Ohio, heard about the plight of the orphaned children in Kenya he felt this was not fair. So Micaiah decided to do what he could do to make a difference. Together with his sisters he created KIDS FOR KENYAN ORPHANS. His first presentation was to his family at Thanksgiving where he asked for the support of his extended family. Micaiah is also going to approach his neighbors and the groups to which he belongs and ask them for a contribution. Micaiah has also made jars labeled CHANGE FOR CHANGE. He plans to collect spare change throughout his area, which will be used to help the orphaned children at St. Clare in Nchiru, Kenya.
It is so revealing how children understand the plight of other children. They can imagine what it would be like to live without parents or a home or without food and they are moved to help.
Thank you Micaiah for your generous heart.
Mr. Peter Githae wears many hats. When the previous principal, Madam Edna, departed unexpectedly due to medical reasons, Mr. Githae became the new principal. As the new principal at St. Clare, he is also considered the head master and head teacher.
Mr. Githae did not have to travel far for he was the principal at St. Francis, the boys’ facility just a half mile down the road. He had served for two years at St. Francis. Fr. Riwa wanted someone experienced at St. Clare so he asked Mr. Githae to move down the road.
The big challenge Mr. Githae will face is the retention of teachers. In Kenya, people take a job were they can find one and for most people it can be hundreds of miles from their families. This is true for teachers also. In addition, because St. Clare is always in session, the teachers at St. Clare have only one break a year for two weeks at Christmas time. So Mr. Githae and the sisters are working diligently at strategies to retain quality teachers.
Here is our most recent mailing to our friends – thank you for your continued support!
View 2011 Christmas Newsletter
When we built the septic tank we thought we were only building a sewage system to protect the children from cholera. Many of the children from St. Clare and St. Francis are members of the parish choir. Clever and creative, the parish choir found another use for the top of the huge septic tank. It is a STAGE for their songs and dances.
The dance is always slow and rhythmic and usually performed to the beat of a drum.
Notice the men with their hands over their heads holding a rectangular box. This box contains seeds, carefully placed in a rectangular box and when shaken in a skilled manner gives forth a unique sound.
So drums and seeds are the background music for the performance. Broadway has nothing on the wonderful singers and dancers from the parish and from St. Clare and St. Francis Schools!
The girls at St. Clare have the best seat in the house!
It was a joyful morning when Mary Jo Johnson, Kathy Partlow, Moira Keefer and Bud and Sue Ozar, last year’s visitors to St Clare, gathered to address and mail the children’s original Christmas cards created under the guidance of Sisters Maurine and Renee. Last February, these three teachers traveled to Kenya with the Ozars to spend time at St. Clare as teachers to the children for two weeks. So when it was time to address the cards to the sponsors, it was only appropriate these women would come together again.
Friendships, developed among last year’s group, were renewed and strengthened amid a great many “oohs “and “aahs” and “look at this one!” as they addressed the cards. It was with great reluctance that they parted with the children’s charming cards. They are pictured here in the Ozar home addressing and stamping the cards, but also remembering the girls and renewing the friendship, which they developed. Thank you, Sisters and girls for sharing your creative and inspiring work. And thank you Mary Jo, Kathy and Moira for your generous hearts.