Greetings from southern Germany where we are having a few days with our youngest son. While he is at work there is time to write this newsletter without distractions!
On July 8th, Liz wrote
I pray all is well with everyone. It has been a busy couple of months at Riziki and I am happy to finally get a chance to properly write a detailed email and not just responses.
April was a busy holiday for us; the children were at home for four weeks, during which time we managed to get a lot done. As we had discussed, we engaged with two lady counsellors to help us address some of the counselling needs we have - the holiday period proved to be the best time for non- urgent issues and so we are hoping to continue this in August.
The children are all well. They just completed a mid-term break. I was not able to spend any time with them as I was at home recovering from a motorbike accident that left me with soft tissue injury on both legs, one more severe than the other. However, I was able to spend some time with Faith this week while she was out of school for two days with Pneumonia. She seems well prepared and ready for the final exams in November and we are very hopeful she will do well. Apart from academics, she has been involved at school in generating ideas for an app. This was a competition, sponsored by Safaricom, and she, together with a few other girls in school, presented ideas for an app that would help patients access fast medical care from doctors. The idea took second place after one for farmers. Faith was very disappointed in this and is very keen on wanting to follow up on this idea after school and see where it goes. I am personally very glad to see her keen on other things outside academics!
We have not settled on a social worker yet and we will be re-advertising the position next week. The one we have currently has health problems that are hindering her from carrying out her job effectively. She disclosed her health problems two days after getting the job and after observing her for two months, she, unfortunately, does not have the energy needed to be responsible for children. So we are back to going through mountains of job applications and interviews.
I am happy to report the water recycling project is going well and we seem to be getting water! It is coming in slowly but it is there. Praise God! I am also very excited about the water surface harvesting and we should have a significant improvement on how we deal with drought months if we get them next year. A big thank you and God bless you for backing this project. We needed to do it this year with the heavy rainfalls as we have no guarantee of such heavy long rains next year, Asante sana.
Speaking of rainfall, we are taking advantage of the two seasons of rainfall. After removing beans we planted a crop of maize immediately, just to take advantage of the extra months of rainfall that we don't normally get. The beans harvest was good. Our rough estimate is probably 12-14 bags. We are still cleaning and drying them so we will know the final number when we are ready to store. Moses has taken a break. He took his annual leave from yesterday and went to see his family in Bungoma; he has not been with them for 8 months. Fred is in charge now!
In August we are looking forward to receiving Crystal a volunteer from the United States. She will be staying with the Director, Mr Kivindyo, and spending time with the kids during the day. This August we are also going to the Masai Mara National Reserve! We have not told the kids yet but am sure we will not be able to contain the excitement. The dates are 16th-19th, Crystal will be joining us.
That is all for now. A big thank you to all involved for all you do. Asante Sana and a Big God Bless you!
On June 12th Julius wrote
All the children continue to do well in school both primary and secondary, their performance is very encouraging indeed. They are all well except that Phyllis who fell sick complaining of stomachache. She was taken to Kabarak hospital and she was treated. Next day, while in school, she was still complaining of the same. I was called by the headteacher at around 8pm so I took her to Valley hospital where she was admitted for two days.
On 6th June Liz was hit by a motorbike. Fortunately her legs were not broken but one needed bandage support and she is recovering.
We planted early, before the rains. This time we decided to plant more beans than maize and we are expecting to harvest quite a number of bags. Attached are pictures of the beans being dried and also shelling the beans; the other crops are doing well.
In April during the school holiday Liz organised a children church and 280 children of upper primary and secondary from the community attended she had a group youths from happy church who volunteered to help her teach the children and it was wonderful all the children enjoyed very much, Diana's beanbags were used during the games.
We are planning to visit Amy when Liz's leg is able to walk and after the visit we will be in a position to talk about the shoes and the quotation for the cowshed. We plan to take Peter with us for him to see the cowshed and take measurements.
About the cleaning water system. The construction work is complete. Now they are removing the poles and timber which were used to support the concrete slab. Then the tank will be cleaned and we will wait for the water to flow through the sand and ballast and into the tank. After that we will install a water pump and the necessary pipes. The fundi said that it will take 2 months for the water to pass through to the tank.
The school van was hit by two tragedies in April. The gearbox got damaged and we bought a another one and then on the schools opening day the engine seized and we were forced to buy another cylinder head. These two cost a lot of money During the repairing of the engine we hired a matatu to transport the children to school for 3 days morning and evening.
July 5th. The cleaning water system has shown signs of water starting to go through so we wait and see then we will install the water pump and put the system on work.
The surface water dam work started recently and the work of digging is progressing well. A liner will be installed next week so no water will ever drain in the ground.
Thank you very much for the good work you have continued to do may God bless you all.
Please greet all in the family and friends. We thank you most sincerely for the good work you are all doing for the sake of the children May God bless you all abundantly.
Julius & Esther
Thank you for taking the time to read this newsletter. Your interest in Riziki is much appreciated. Without your help, Riziki could not exist.
Ian & Diana Hogley