Here we will keep you up to date with all the latest news straight from Footprints...
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A Remarkable Life Lives on through supporting Children in Kenya.
Holly Brown's Legacy.
Out of tragedy brings opportunity for our children at Footprints.
Sadly Holly Brown, from Burton on Trent, tragically lost her life in July 2017. Her parents and twin sister made the decision to ask for donations to help Footprints to continue its work out in Kenya by enriching our children's lives. In excess of £5000 has been donated in memory of Holly - testament to this popular young girl and her family and friends.
As a long lasting memory the money raised will enrich and touch many children's lives at Footprints - just as Holly's parents enriched her life in the UK.
Our community room at Footprints has never had power and now it will be fitted with solar panels to bring in light and life.
An activities programme of dance, sports, cycling, additional tuition and community outreach projects involving the local children, will mean that the children of Footprints will have a full and exciting life, just as Holly did.
The room will be called:
The Holly Brown - Learning for Life Zone.
A dedication to a vibrant young girl taken from our world too soon.
Her memory will live on in the children's lives at Footprints.
The Children Save Tortoises!
The children now have 3 tortoises and had to make a home for them so that they are safe.
It was a great project and they are now enjoying learning all about them and caring for them.
The Alestree WI make Dresses for the Children.
The Craft Group, at the Alestree WI, in Derby took on a new project. They met together to do some sewing, using all of their WI skills, they recycled larger dresses and have made beautiful outfits. I'm sure Rose will love the dress with hearts on!
They have made a selection of dresses for the younger girls at Footprints. The children will enjoy having some new clothes.
We spent an afternoon having tea and biscuits and the 16 ladies that came along learned a little more about the Footprints Family and the stories behind this wonderfully warm and loving family. They had lots of questions and went away brimming with ideas of how to support the children further.
It never ceases to amaze me just how fantastic people are - a huge 'thank you' goes to them all for their support.
Getting Involved during the Holidays - August 2017.
During the August holidays the children have taken part in a range of enrichment activities, including Tae Kwando and Dance classes.
As you can see from the photographs the children had a fabulous time learning new skills.
Tae Kwando teaches concentration and coordination.
The Children at Massai Corner Celebrate a Great term at School July 2017
How wonderful at the end of term presentation some of the Footprints children received certificates.
The staff and Mama Kerry went along and were very proud of the children.
Harrun came second in his class, as did Mwongeli and David was awarded the 'Best Improved Student' in his class.
The rest of the children have also done very well and everyone is proud of them.
More Social Enquiries to Find out about Children's Backgrounds.
Mr Kivuli, The Children's Officer went out with Kerry and Patrick on a social enquiry to try to find out more about Lupina and Mathias' background.
As the enquiry became so difficult it was important to have an official with them. It just goes to show what a difficult process this is , but it is so important to find out everything that is known about the children before they come to live at Footprints.
Kerry and Patrick will continue this harrowing work in order to provide a home for the most needy of children in their locality.
Gay Ward completes the Coast to Coast.
Our dear friend, Gay Ward took on the challenge of walking 190miles coast to coast starting from the Irish Sea coast finishing on the North Sea coast on the 18th of July.
After recent injury she has recovered enough to once again support Footprints and our children In taking on this tough challenge.
We wish her the best of luck.
If you would like to donate to support Gay please visit www.justgiving.com/Sabrina-gay-ward4
Amazingly Gay has raised a tremendous £1, 412
Pingle Academy, Swadlincote, support the Children of Footprints, Kenya - July 2017
The Learning Support base students and Y7 pupils at The Pingle Academy were so taken by the visit of Marian Askew from Footprints Orphanage, sharing her experiences of when she spent 4 weeks out there in May 2016, that they were desperate to help.
They have been collecting shoes and fundraising, by baking and selling cakes at sports day and by making donations on a non uniform day.
A total of £231.37 was presented to Marian by Mrs V Sharples (Principal) and two year 7 pupils.
As well as raising money the pupils also collected 9 boxes of shoes, trainers and flip flops!
This may seem strange but footware is the most expensive item of clothing to buy, and probably the most important, as without shoes the children are susceptible to chigoe fleas found in the sand, which burrow in to the feet and lay eggs. As well as being painful, infections can lead to amputations and in the worst cases, death.
Teacher, Lucia Covell said, 'We are now asking pupils, parents and staff to sort through their shoes and donate them to Pingle's shoe collection.'
Black shoes for school are the most needed.
Well done to all the pupils and staff, it is greatly appreciated.
Our volunteers will be taking the shoes out to Kenya when they next visit.
St Mary's Church Rolleston raise more funds for Footprints.
Marian was welcomed at St Mary's Church, Rolleston on Dove yesterday evening, on the 2nd July 2017, to receive a cheque for £740 which was from the collection during Lent.
The young couple at the back of the church were there to have their marriage bands read. They both worked with Kerry many years ago - which shows what a small world we live in.
The congregation of St Mary's Church are so supportive of Footprints. Earlier this year they raised £515, it is truly amazing.
The Reverend Ian Whitehouse can be seen here presenting the cheque, with the choir and several members of the congregation showing their support.
Thank you all for your continued hard work and generosity.
Even with so much to do there is always time for FUN.
Uncle Patrick enjoys some play time with the children- it's fair to say everyone is having a good time!
Day of the African Child
Children from local children's homes get together.
Uncle Patrick took the children to a celebration in Lunga Lunga, near the Tanzania border.
It is a day where children from children's homes get together in celebration of African children.
The children had a great picnic with lots of food and celebrations.
The New Pump is Installed August 2017
As we await our replacement pump for our borehole our daily need to access water increases and is becoming a huge challenge and there is a high risk of disease from the river water that we are collecting.
At the moment there is an outbreak of cholera in parts of Kenya and as 'mama' to these wonderful kids I'm concerned for their health, let's hope we can rectify our problem very soon.
The problem is solved.
Everyone has been involved in collecting water- as you can imagine having enough water for 50 people is unbelievable!
It has been such a challenge, but thanks to Rob Wallace and his persistence the pump arrived and is now installed. Our new pump works fanastically.
Getting a pump delivered to Kenya is a huge undertaking, on route it passed through 11 places.
It started in Denmark then moved to Germany, Sunderland, Nottingham, Macclesfield, London, Heathrow, Nairobi, Mombasa, Ukunda and finally Kwele.
No matter how long it took, we'd like to thank everyone involved in helping us to solve this problem.
Water is fiundamental to everyone's health.
The Pump for the Borehole Breaks Again!
Once again we have more problems with the borehole pump. It has silted up again and it appears that we need a different type of pump to cope in this area.
This is a huge blow.
Davis and Shirtlif supplied the pump and we are awaiting a quote for a new one.
Having clean water at Footprints has revolutionised life so we have to find a way to afford a new pump.
Our New Roads
May and June 2017
As you know the government are developing all of the roads around Footprints in the Shimba Hills. Unfortunately work has halted and now the rains have come, having a devasting impact on the half finished roads.
The road to Footprints became impassable and the Footprints team have had to intervene. They have been taking sacks of hard core to the worst sections to try improve things in the short term.
Have a look at the photographs to see how the roads have subsided.
Hopefully the government will start work again soon.
Stephen Leafe takes on a huge challenge May 2017- Find out more!
Steve is keen to help Footprints Orphanage in its ongoing effort to raise funds to support its continued work out in Kenya.
In May Steve is carrying out an 8 day challenge in the north of England.
The challenge is totally self funded by Steve, so everything raised will go to help the orphanage, who offer a lifeline for the children in its care.
Any support for Steve would be most welcome. Please go to his fundraising page:
Thank you to everyone who supported Steve on his mammoth quest - in total he raised £1020, wonderful.
Bakari shows his rugby prowess!
Bakari is now really making his mark, playing rugby for his school. If you are interested to find out more then google The Star, Kenya. Alternatively google Bakari's name as he is mentioned in a number of articles.
How wonderful is his story, from abject poverty to successful sportsman and student at secondary school. These are certainly opportunities he would never have dreamed of without the support and love of the Footprint's family, and that includes everyone who supports Footprints.
Well done, Bakari, everyone is so proud of you.
As we know we can give young people opportunities but they have to take them.
Bakari remains a role model for all of the younger children at Footprints.
Barclays Bank, Burton - on - Trent fundraise for Footprints.
Pop in to Barclays Bank on Thursday 20th April and help them to raise money for Footprints.
Delicious cakes for an Easter treat or take part in the raffle and have a go on the tombola.
End of term awards at Maasai Corner Academy for the youngest children.
The children received their awards for doing well in their exams after their first term at Maasai Corner Academy.
The children were very excited.
Footprints Committee Member Jo Hastings was there to celebrate with them all.
In her words, 'It melted my heart to see the joy and pride on their faces.'
Donated pjs enjoyed by the youngest children- they love Peppa Pig!
It is amazing how many pairs of pjs Footprints needs.
It is crucial, even though it is hot, that the children cover their arms and legs at night to avoid mosquito bits and minimise the risk of malaria.
Having new ones makes the youngest children so happy.
Wonderful news- the Government are improving the roads!
At last the Government are improving the roads in the Shimba Hills. This will make life at Footprints so much better. In the rainy season they are almost impassable.
It will be interesting to see how far this development project goes. We will keep you updated.
Collecting a Donation from Eggington Primary School.
Ater a great deal of fund raising Egginton Primary School presented Footprints with a cheque for £537.84. A fantastic amount raised from a school of only 70 pupils.
The events that the school held to raise the money were:
If you need ideas for fundraising then I think Eggingtom Primary have certainly been creative.
Well done to all of the children and staff - it is much appreciated.
Jo Menzies went along and told the children about her experience of her time at Footprints last September. The children then joined in with a dance that the the Footprints children had learned in their long school break.
It was fantastic.
Fires in the Shimba Hills.
The ongoing droughts have caused many challenges to the local community. The bush fires came too close to Footprints, with no emergency services, we have to be prepared at all times. The staff and locals worked hard to contain this fire. Hopefully there will be more rain in 2017.
The Curry Night at Bilash in Burton was a sell out.
Come and join us for an evening of fun and fundraising.
25th November 2017
After the younger children had been at their new school for the first day they came home eager to see all of their aunties - especially the little ones.
How gorgeous is this!
The Younger Children Start at Massai Academy - Monday 9th January 2017.
The youngest children have now all started at Massai Academy, which is only 10 minutes from Footprints. They all look very smart and ready for the challenges ahead. A couple of the little ones found it difficult as they have never been parted from the aunties since being rescued, but I'm sure they will settle in quickly and make new frienfs. Good luck to them all.
A New Start at a New School.
All of the older children are now attending Makemba Academy down in Ukunda.It is a long day but I'm sure the children will take every opportunity to do well.
We wish them all the best of luck for 2017.
The Puppies Leave Footprints!
What fun the puppies have brought to the children over the holidays. Sadly Stella got an infection and died. Luckily the puppies were weened, so almost ready to go to their new homes. As Stella was gone we decided to keep two of the male puppies as guard dogs. We have called them Jon and Jim.
They are so popular with all of the children, it has been a delight having them over the holidays.
Uncle Patrick loves them, check out the photograph of them chilling out together!
Christmas at Footprints 2017.
With all of your generous donations, we put together a santa hat for every child. Each has something to wear and a few little treats to have fun with. This year there was beaded jewellery,colouring books and pencils, tiy cars and books. A huge 'thank you' goes to everyone who has donated anything for the children. It is pure joy to see their faces on Christmas morning.
We hope you all had a wonderful Christmas and have a great New Year.
Camping at Tsavo East - December 2016
The boys, with Kerry, Uncle Patrick and Uncle Zak set off for Tsavo East. They took all of their camping eqipment and were determined to have fun. I think you can see from the photographs that everyone had a great time. On the journey there the boys saw a train on the newly constructed railway for the first time!
Elephant, zebra and giraffe were all seen within an hour.
What an experience!
A Day at Diani Beach. - December 2016
What a fantastic place the children live near. With some Christmas money sent to treat the children, Kerry and the team took the family for a day out on Diani Beach, an hour away from Footprints. Everyone had a fabulous time, in fact it was the first time that Ruth, Roses' mum had been on a beach.
In her usual way, Kerry had negotiated a cheap price for the children to experience the joys of a glass bottomed boat, which as you can imagine, they loved!
Fun and laughter the whole day.
Dance Workshops at Footprints.
The children have had several dance workshops which they have enjoyed.
All ages love to work together having fun.
They love to perform!
Writing to schools supporting Footprints. - November 2016
Elizabeth and Uchi have beed writing to one of the schools that raises money for Footprints every Christmas.
The holidays provides extra time and letter writing is a great opportunity to practise writing in English and tell schools in England about life in the Shimba Hills.
I know the children will love to hear more about Footprints!
Family members visit Footprints - November 2016
Distant family members visit the children for a special day, which is held every year, so that families are certain that their children are safe and cared for well. The hope is always that every child will have at least one relative visit.
Sadly, Njoki and Harrun were disappointed that no one came to visit them this year!
It is so important that the children have a connection to their 'roots.'
We will continue to forge these relationships and support all of the children to see relatives.
Footprints Academy Closes - November 2016.
Many of you will know that over the past 4 years, out of necessity, we built and ran our own school, Footprints Academy, in order for our children to recieve quality education. We opened the school to the local community at a small fee to ensure that our children were still interacting with other children, making friends, playing as normal children do. The growth and the success of the school was phenomenal, however this was only achieved because the charity subsidized a big part of it.
We've now had to recognize that the school was financially jeoprodising the future of Footprints Orphanage and to continue to run the school would mean that Footprints would be unable to sustain and fulfill its original vision to rescue children in need.
We have had to make some incredibly soul searching decisions, but the conclusion we reached was the charity should not continue to subsidize the education of NON-Footprints children. Unlike six years ago, we are now very lucky that there are two local schools who will provide the quality education our children deserve.
For this reason from November 2016 the school will close and the facilities will be converted to enhance the accommodation for the children in our care and increase the capacity to rescue more children in the coming years.
I am incredibly proud in the way the children have responded to the planned changes and acted in a very grown up and responsible way.
So from January 2017 all of our children will be going out every day to local schools to continue their education and broaden their social interaction.
We look forward to being a pary of new communities.
The children have been working hard to clear the classrooms now that the school has closed. The extra rooms are fantastic. The secondary school pupils have converted the old staff room in to a common room for the older children - they have helped to design it.
Another classroom has been converted in to a study room, for them to do their homework.
They have also cleared another room for workshops. This holiday they have had a number of dance workshops, which they love.
The conversion to new dormatories will begin in January 2017.
The children helping in the community - November 2016
Our children feel privileged compared to children and families who continue to struggle in the community, so every holiday the children go out in to the local community to help the most needy.
On Tuesday 15th November a lady who is almost 100 years old was thrilled when the children arrived at her home to fetch water, clean and work on her garden.
Pictured above is Mary with Mama Delilah Charles, you can see how delighted she was from her face.
We are so proud of our children!
Long School Holidays - November and December 2016
As you can imagine a two month holiday from school means that life at Footprints is even more hectic.
30 youngsters from 3 months to 20 years old need to be busy all day.(Anyone who is a parent will know just how hard it is with two or three children, let alone 30!!!) With this in mind a whole programme of events takes place.
On November 11th it was a sports day and above you can see Sera, Sofia and Mwongeli having fun in the sack race. They have also had a fashion show, dressing up in all of the dressing up oufits, making crazy characters!
Even MamaKerry is in a sack!!!
The younger children can also be seen playing in the Under 5's Area - They are having fun!
The 2016 Footprint's Charity Ball - held on November 5th.
What a wonderfully emotional night it was. Through the generosity of everyone there, £17000 was raised with more to come.
The charity auction alone raised in excess of £5000 - an amazing achievement.
A huge thank you goes to all of those who donated prizes, to the Management Committee and all others who helped in any way.
Without the continued commitment and dedication of local people Footprints would not exist, so please continue to support Kerry on her mission to give the children of the Shimba Hills a warm, caring and loving family in which to flourish.
Thank you once again.
Stella, the Footprints dog has 8 puppies!
26th October 2016
Stella is a marvellous guard dog but also a pet for the children. It is very exciting to have eight new puppies and it is an ideal time as the children are on their long school break.
Stella had four black puppies and four cream.
I know there will be lots of fun with the puppies over the next eight weeks.
Appreciation of Our precious water - August 2016
We have been blessed with our borehole for over a year now, allowing us to be able to push forward with our sustainability plans; our vegetable shamba was harvesting a wonderful array of vegetables, our children’s aunties were so happy with their new washing machine, that life was on the whole becoming a little easier. But imagine our disappointment in August when our solar pump stopped working!
During the time of negotiations with manufacturers and technical advisors it was Footprints that went back to the daily challenge of fetching water, every operation in the home became more and more difficult, with no water for washing clothes, the children, teeth cleaning, hand washing, cleaning toilets, cooking and our lovely cultivated gardens and vegetables began to die !!! Even some of the children became ill from water that had not been treated correctly, the frustrations were many.
After weeks without water we were delighted when our pump was finally repaired and re-installed.
We thank everyone who supported us once again through this difficult time.
It sure has made us realize how precious our borehole and the water it pumps is for Footprints and our family.
With sadness we announce that Aunty Ruth passed away.
Footprints has been saddened by the recent and untimely loss of our social worker Aunty Ruth after a short illness. Ruth has been part of our children's lives for over 3 years and, like all of the staff here, became like a surrogate parent to them. For the children, who have already lost parents, this was another loss to come to terms with. Footprints made sure that Ruth's own family were supported after her death. She will be so missed.
Rest in peace Ruth.
Part of Aunty Ruth's role was to regularly counsel the children and we recognised this is critical to help support them. Many of the children have experienced a great deal of trauma and so we needed to ensure they continued to receive this support. Thanks to contributions from our wonderful friends and supporters, we have employed Mama Lillian, a professional children's counsellor, to carry out both group and individual counselling sessions with our children.
This is essential work as issues that the children have, need to be addressed whilst they are young, so that they will grow in to well rounded adults.
Additional Volunteer House Built in 2015
Earlier this year we had a volunteer visit us which the children loved as there had not been some volunteers for a while. Throughout Autumn this year we are delighted that more volunteers have plans to visit us. It is a great pleasure to spend time with you and for you to help the children in so many ways. If you would like to pay us a visit please see more information on the website. As you can see we are expanding the volunteer houses so more people can visit us at the same time.
Green Fingers at Footprints
Using the land around us and becoming self sustaining is very important here at footprints. Being almost 1 hour away from the nearest town, markets and shops it's important for us to try and grow our own vegetables and utilize the land around us. The benefits of a water supply is now beginning to show!
Edwina Curry meets Kerry...
Kerry while in Whaley Bridge, enjoyed an encouraging meeting with Edwina prior to an event organised by Footprints supporter Jackie Wallace.
Edwina is patron of a children's home elswhere in Africa and it was great for Kerry to receive Edwina's congratulations; complimenting Kerry on all that she has achieved with Footprints.
On January 9th Mutua became critically ill after contracting malaria whilst visiting his home community. His kidneys and liver shut down and we thought that we would lose him. It was a very distressing time, especially for Kerry who was constantly at his bedside and administering treatment herself. Thankfully, because Mutua was so healthy before he became ill, and because we were able to get him the right medical care, he survived and is now back home and should make a full recovery. The doctors have described it as a miracle!
We thank all of our wonderful supporters for their donations and the brilliant and compassionate doctors in Kenya. Without all of you, Mutua would not have had any chance of fighting an illness which kills thousands of children in Africa every single day.
It may be hard to imagine that YOU have saved a child you may never have met ... but everyone who has supported Footprints Orphanage has saved Mutua's life. Thank you!
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