Our Founder in Kenya – 2016

30 May 2016

Incredible. Simply incredible day. The day of the official opening of the new St.Trizah’s School had arrived. We set off through the slums and through the streets, to see improvements compared to my previous visits. Roads are being fixed, paths are being made and people look busy, looking to work.

Our arrival at St.Trizah’s started by visiting the accompanying field and seeing crops growing. A fantastic site. They were planted in May and will be ready in September. Once… ready, they will be able to feed the school for a few months.

As we walked to the entrance, we were greeted to a few familiar faces and to a red ribbon. My father, Steve and brother, Paul, were given the honour on behalf of Derby County Community Trust and African Adventures to cut the ribbon. I was a little emotional to be honest. Both of them have worked extremely hard over the last 5 years and I couldn’t be more proud of them both.

During the last few months, we have learnt that a lot of the children from the original St.Trizah’s School will not move with it. Those who have followed me, will know that one of the children that I have grown fond of is James. I have been very worried that he would be one of the children that has moved to a different school. However, as soon as I walked onto the new site, a gleaming smile was there to greet me. JAMES IS HERE! Tears ran down both of our eyes as we embraced. I then gave him two photographs of myself with him from the last two years and he was extremely happy with them.

We were then treated to three hours of dancing, singing and acting. There are some seriously good dancers at this school. At one point we all performed with them!

I was also given an honour myself, this time to plant a tree outside one of the classrooms. As I looked across the field, I could see children playing and laughing. We as a team did that! We helped build the classrooms, we helped put the water supply in, we helped build the kitchen! It’s a massive achievement and something that I extremely proud of not only me but all of the volunteers from the last few years. We have helped changed lives.

I was able to sit with James and talk to him about how he was. He told me that his Mother is extremely poorly in hospital and is currently living with his auntie. His father died a few years ago. It takes him two hours a day to walk to school and then two hours to go home. I was lost for words. I explained that I lost my Mother and sister and tried to give him some words of encouragement. It’s so tough of that poor lad.

The rest of the day was catching up with new and old teachers and children. Although we didn’t have a chance to start building a classroom, it was such an important day for this school and for us. Sometimes making a difference is simply by talking and laughing rather than building. It’s definitely a day I will always remember.