Caring for street children at Naivasha, Kenya

Romilly’s charity has agreed to make a contribution to salaries at the Naivasha Childrens’ Shelter. The trustees there have recently taken on a social worker for a probationary period.Social worker and ex street child at the Naivasha Childrens' Shelter, Naivasha, KenyaBy all accounts he is doing a great job.

After the terrible things that have happened to them: loss of parents and home, and then the grim life of the streets, the children need to talk to someone, need  help to come to terms with what has happened to them and help to make the best of their new life. That is all part of the social worker’s role.

Thank you Kristen Sayres of the Naivasha Childrens’ Shelter for sending this lovely photograph. And thank you to Romilly’s supporters for enabling her charity to help these children.


Keen to learn. Ex-street children with a foot on the academic ladder.

These boys were street children. Not anymore.  They’ve worked hard at the Naivasha Children’s Shelter to pass their KPCE exams and are now going to high school. Street children don’t go to school. Unfortunately like many in Africa the Kenyan government does not pay for school fees above a certain age. One of the best ways of making sure that a child or young person does not end up on the street is to make sure that he or she is able to go to school.  This is why we are so pleased to be able to pay for a years school fees for these 6 boys (only five in the picture).
For that thanks to all Romilly’s kind, generous donors.  Good work.  Five african boys in coloured background blue doorsThank you Julius for taking the picture and Kristen for sending it.  We hope that we will have more news about these boys and how they get on at high school.

We are also grateful to Romilly’s supporters for enabling her charity to pay a years salary for a social worker at the shelter.

Miki’s Marathon                                                                                                                                  Thank you very much indeed too to all those who have donated by sponsoring Miki Jablowski’s heroic London Marathon.  So far 45 people have sponsored her. At the time of writing there are 32 more days to go.

The Friends of the Street Children in Kitwe.                                                                        Christopher Mulenga, the executive chairman and our interlocuter, has had malaria and has been out of contact. Having recovered from his malaria his internet went down but I am hoping to have news from him soon.

Naivasha Street Children learn to succeed

‘Great news! ‘  Kristen Sayres of the Naivasha Children’s Shelter writes,

‘Six of our KCPE candidates (boys who completed class 7) have secured a place in secondary school! This is a huge achievement, and shows not only the dedication and talent of our boys, but also of the teachers, staff and donors who have invested in them throughout the years.

I’d like to introduce you to one of the boys, James. Kenyan Boy from Naivasha Children's Shelter, blue denim waste coat, yellow and blue football shirt, blue doorJames is 14, and has been at the shelter for three years, since he was left at a bus stop in Naivasha town. He did exceptionally well in his exam, and wants to be a neurosurgeon when he grows up. He also enjoys art, and recently drew a picture of a man with a book for a face (what he imagined when he heard the term “Facebook”).    He is very excited about attending high school, and says that he will study hard to realize his dreams.

We appreciate your continued support for these boys, and look forward to sharing more with you in the future. ‘

Kristen, thank you for sending this.

Good work, James (14). From streetchild to neurosurgeon, that is a tremendous ambition. Thank you, all you generous Romilly supporters for helping to give James this chance.

Digging the Fish Pond


Boys at the Naivasha Children’s Shelter digging the new fish pond at the shelter.  The fish pond will help to feed the boys and produce a surplus for sale.  Thanks to Joseph Kinyanjui for this photograph and thanks to Romilly’s supporters for the money to equip the pond.

Romilly helps street children to help themselves

Following the success of the first fish pond at the Naivasha Children’s Shelter (see February 19th’s post) Romilly is sending 4625 euros  to pay for a second fish pond and two green houses.

The charity is also paying for the repair of the borehole and the replacement of the pump at the Kawama shelter in Kitwe. Once the borehole is working order, Romilly, will contribute £5000 to the £12000 cost of a consultancy study by the group ‘Teach a Man to Fish’.

The Kitwe project needs to be more sustainable in order to be able to continue its excellent work, that is to say that it needs to grow more food, provide more of it’s own income, and raise more money locally. The aim of the study by ‘Teach a Man to Fish’ is to identify ways of doing this and to help FSC of Kitwe write a business plan.  £12000 does not sound a great deal for this kind of a study, but ‘Teach a Man to Fish’ is a charitable group.

Fishers of fish: Boys at the Naivasha Children’s Shelter feed themselves


Isn’t this great?

Joseph Kinyanjui, who is the shelter administrator, at the Naivasha Children’s Shelter sent me this picture of these happy boys, ex street children, who are harvesting fish from the shelter’s fish pond.  The pond is capable of producing 1000 mature fish every six months, enough to feed the boys and provide surplus for sale. Apart from the water, and the baby fish which are bought in, the other ingredients are fish food, which is cheaper than chicken food and, yes, chicken manure.  The fish that the children are raising in this pond are called Tilapia.

Joseph has also sent me a wish list for the shelter:

Training Materiels for the carpentry and metal shop                                               1500 euros

School Uniforms, dustcoats and aprons                                                                        840 euros

Garden Fencing                                                                                                                   950 euros

Poultry feed                                                                                                                         800 euros

Construction of two more greehouses                                                                          3400 euros

Another fish pond                                                                                                              1225 euros

Employment of a cook  per year                                                                                    1200 euros

Computer desks                                                                                                                  460 euros

Employment of a social worker  per year                                                                    2400 euros

Another deep freeze for the kitchen                                                                               350 euros

More sufurias                                                                                                                        90 euros

Another energy saving jiko and chimney                                                                   1000 euros

Repair and maintenance of the shelter buildings                                                     3820 euros

Mattresses                                                                                                                          1500 euros

Construction of a urinal outside the dormitories                                                        500 euros

Another dormitory to house  more children                                                            15000 euros

School fees and other expenses for 14 boys in secondary schools per year         6000 euros

Servicing and repainting the shelter car                                                                       500 euros

If you would like to contribute to any of these items go to the donation page on this blog.  Thank you.

The Death of Debbie Case of the Naivasha Children’s Shelter

I learnt today that Debbie Case, the driving force, behind the Naivasha Children’s Shelter died peacefully in hospital during the night of 30th December.

Debbie had been diagnosed with cancer in June.

Having lost her own daughter in terrible circumstances she put an enormous amount of love and energy into the Naivasha Children’s Shelter, which was opened in 2003. It is safe to say that without all the work that she put into the shelter it would not have been the success that it has become and it would not have been as well established. She leaves it behind in great shape with wonderful staff and a lot of happy children. To the children it has cared for over the years the shelter she set up has been a life changer, in many cases a life saver. Well done Debbie. We will miss you.