Archive for April, 2012
Upon returning to New Jersey from Kenya, Andy and Cathy Cahill told their families about their experiences working at the St. Clare Centre. Cathy is a Nurse Practitioner who works with AIDS children at Newark Beth Israel Medical Center in Newark, New Jersey. At St. Clare she provided physicals for the girls and health education.
Cathy relates “I can’t get those children out of my mind. I think of them all the time.” She and Andy told their story which resulted in their siblings all becoming sponsors for a girl at St. Clare. Through these sponsorships the Cahill influence will continue and have a positive long lasting impact.
Mr. Mgobo, the chief engineer in charge of the building at St. Clare Centre, has sent the following report regarding the ongoing construction at St. Clare. Two postings (work on the septic system and work on the perimeter wall) will appear in upcoming posts.
- Graveling work complete.
- Maaram work complete.
- Reinforcement materials delivered.
- Ballast, sand and cement delivery in progress.
- Concrete work scheduled to start on 14 April 2012.
GROUND FLOOR ~
- Tiling work going on- 5 classrooms tiled.
- Sanitation drainage being improved.
2nd FLOOR SANITATION~
- Drainage system 99% complete.
- Drainpipes added per recommendations.
- Scheduled to be commissioned April 2012.
- Remaining incomplete roof being worked on.
- Tiling complete.
- Toilet and bathroom drainage complete.
- Working on procurement of rubber paint.
- Cloth lines to be put up on April 28-2012.
- Fresh water pipes installed.
You also need to know that Bright Old Bald Bud (his name for himself) recalls that he was never the “stellar athlete” in any phase of his education and vividly remembers never being picked first for any team. However, his philosophy is “if you are old enough to walk or old enough to spend the day taking care of livestock, or old enough to carry water or dig in the fields, you should be old enough to develop physical exercise and play skills during recess.” Over the years during his trips to St. Clare, “Coach Ozar” watched the girls during their outside recess time just standing around not doing anything. So he developed a master plan and sought the aid of P.E. teachers to learn games he could teach the girls where they could play without equipment.
Armed with a trusty whistle (“I still am into control,” Bud noted.), and a whole bunch of games, “Coach O” would meet various classes under a mango tree to teach and conduct fun PE games. These games were fun, great exercise and taught the girls lessons about teamwork, cooperation and collaboration.
Interestingly enough, at the same time, the St. Clare Girls’ football (soccer) team was doing very well competing against the other area schools. In fact, St. Clare had won the area championship and was leading in the district competition. If the girls won there, they would go on to nationals. One day someone from one of the other schools passed by St. Clare and saw Coach Ozar working with the girls, teaching and leading their games. This person reported this and the word went out. “St. Clare had brought in an American coach,” accounting their winning. Because of this one team actually forfeited its game with St. Clare, refusing the play.
Who would have ever guessed that Bud Ozar, the non-athlete-who-was-never-picked-first-for-any-school-team would became Coach Ozar, PE teacher and game leader par excellence? What a small world it really is!
by Elizabeth Wanjikuu – class 6
It was a chilly morning when I woke up and ran to change to my game clothes. When the bell rang for us to go to breakfast, I was so excited that I almost didn’t finish my food. This was the day of our SPORTS COMPETITION.
We started the journey to the Kunene Primary School where the competition was held. Since we were the first ones to arrive, we waited for the other teams as we practiced. Once the first teams arrived, we learned that the starting game would be volleyball. Our volleyball team was playing strong at first, but when Kunene Primary had twenty-three points and St. Clare twenty-two, we began to lose heart. The rest of us encouraged our team to take heart and they won the game to give us the lead.
Then, it was time for the football team to be on the field. (In Kenya, football is what people call soccer.) The St. Clare players worked hard so that they could win, but the girls on the other team were too tough and strong. Our team became discouraged and thought winning was not going to be possible. But our coach encouraged our girls. He told them that they should not fear those other girls and that they could win. So when St. Clare went back out onto the field the girls did not fear the other team, and ended up winning the game. We were all so happy.
During our lunch break, Mr. David encouraged us to continue to work hard and put effort into the remaining games. He told us that we were going to play the final games. We won again and were so excited. Our coach was happy and proud of us.
As we headed back to school, we were singing and dancing in the matatu (van), which really did not have enough space for singing and dancing.
In Kenya, “Easter eggs” is not a tradition, but eating eggs is a treat. So the Dominican Sisters have begun a tradition at St. Clare – an egg for every girl for Easter breakfast. This is one of the high points of the day for the children.
To share a little more of our American tradition, Sister Maureen, assisted by the newly hired librarian, Madam Mercy, and the rest of the sisters, taught the children the joyful art of coloring eggs. Included in the project were girls from class 4 through class 8.
Sunday morning there will be squeals of delight from the little ones, nursery through class three, when they saw the colored eggs. Indeed everyone at St. Clare Centre enjoyed a Happy Easter .
AN EASTER MESSAGE-
As we celebrate this Easter season I am reminded of something a child said: “If I wasn’t here, I would either be a thief or dead.” That could be said of the 650 all the children who have been rescued. I know the life of a thief in Kenya is very short. It is clear to me all these beautiful children would probably be dead if the St. Clare Centre did not exist. Hunger, disease or violence would have extinguished their young lives.
My friends, it is also clear to me, these children have been given life by YOU!!! Your compassion has returned them to life. At this time of the year I remember YOU are the Easter people who have rolled away the rock and allowed these children to escape the tomb of the streets and abuse. The resurrection continues through YOU.
So on this Easter 2012 I say THANK YOU to all the sponsors and donors. You truly are Easter People.
Gratefully Yours in the Risen Lord,
For several years the young girls of St Clare have been living and attending classes in a partially completed facility. But now we have some very exciting news to share. A most generous donor has offered to match every gift made before the end of December 2012 up to $50,000.
The goal of this capital campaign is to totally complete the St Clare Girls Centre. Today St. Clare cannot accept more girls. However, the successful completion of this Capital Campaign will provide space allowing more girls to be rescued and brought to the safety of St. Clare.