The latest news from Riziki is not as cheerful as we would like to report. Life throughout Kenya has become difficult for many people because of the on-going drought. The last three rainy seasons have been very poor or non-existent in most parts of the country.
On July 9th, Liz wrote:
Drought: The drought has continued and we have only received three days rain in total in the past two weeks following the two weeks we got in April after we planted. The maize wilted but did not dry up and after the three-day rain the maize seems to be maturing too early. We are waiting to see whether we will get any cobs. I must mention that all the maize crop around us (our neighbours) did not survive the drought as well as ours did and we find ours surviving - at whatever state - a miracle. The beans we had planted (a small portion) also interestingly were able to survive and we believe we will at least get the seed back. I truly cannot explain it, we only believe this is all the prayer that was made on Riziki's behalf. A big thank you to all that prayed with us.
Grass is another issue. We don't have cow feed and we might need separate funding to buy hay; is this possible? We have used money we get from milk but it might not be sufficient stock to carry us through this drought however long it is.
Yusuf, our county coordinator for children’s services, retired on the 30th of June. There was a send-off party for him on Thursday 6th July and Riziki was represented. (He was the guest of honour who opened Riziki in 2010. He has been very supportive of Riziki and will be missed. - Ed)
About the country I truly have nothing to say. Just continue to keep us in your prayers.
The children are fine; they were on a mid-term break at the end of June and have since gone back to school. On Wednesday 5th July we picked up Faith from school quite sick. They found Malaria. She is not back to school yet.
Director: Mr Kivindyo has been unwell for the last two weeks with his blood pressure going up. On Wednesday it was 203 over something I forget but has since come down to 155 over (again can't remember) so keep him in your prayers.
The Children were invited to a nearby church for peace Sunday. That will be on 30th July. It is essentially a Sunday to pray for peace during and after elections. They have been asked to prepare any peace-themed presentation to perform on the day.
On June 8th, Julius wrote:
Praise be to the Almighty God, we thank Him for keeping us safe in His mighty hands.
We are all well as a family and the Riziki children are well and doing fine, still working very hard in school. Their end of May results were very encouraging indeed. I thank God for I am now feeling far much better compared to what I have been feeling in the whole month of May. I have been having body weakness and dizziness. The cause not known because after performing several blood tests and other body tests all the results came out negative, but I have faith in God I will be well.
Sorry to say that I was not able to start the renovation project and the store work. Peter appointed somebody to carry out the work but he has never started. Although I was not well he showed up only once to take measurements and he never came back, but I will now look for him because I am feeling better.
Antony left hospital on 6th May2017 and stayed home for 2 days before he went back to school and he has recovered well. Kelvin’s operation did not take place because of my poor health; I plan to take him next week, God willing. My new eye operation appointment will be worked out after Kelvin’s operation because we don’t know for how long he will stay in hospital.
On 1st May 2017 we held a general birthday party for all the children which they enjoyed very much, together with their friends from the community and a few from their school.
Sorry to say we have no rain but we are hopeful that it will rain before the crops are dead. We are still facing the water shortage. The greenhouse was once again blown by the wind and it is being repaired. Turi gave birth on Sunday early morning to a male calf.
Please pass our love and greetings to all in the family. May God bless you all.
Julius & Esther.
On July 21st Julius wrote again:
The children were on school mid-term as Liz had mentioned earlier. Faith came on 15th June and went back on 19th June, the secondary boys came on 17th June and went back on 21st June and primary ones from 27th June to 3rd July. Their mid- term exam results were good with a few getting over 400 marks. The secondary ones also performed well.
On 5th July Faith was picked up sick from school and was taken to hospital; she was treated and stayed at home and on 10th July she went back to school feeling well.
On 10th July four children were taken to St. Mary hospital:-
Dennis Kibet‘s toe problem had recurred. The surgeon decided that it was to be operated on to remove a fungus which had started to grow and it was done on that day. Thanks to God he is now doing well.
Grace Wanjiku's leg problem had also recurred. After X-Ray the surgeon said that the problem is on the bone and it needs to be operated on to clean the affected area of the bone. She will be admitted on 31st July for the operation on 1st August 2017
Kelvin Kipkoech was given an appointment to go back on 13th July and because I was not well Liz took him to hospital. He was admitted on 13th July, because of his leg problem, and the operation was done next day. He came out of hospital on 15th July and we thank God he is recovering well
Neema Chebet had stomach problem and after several tests she was put on medication. Now she is doing very well.
On 14th July Phyllis Nyambura fell sick. She complained of stomachache and was taken to hospital. Now she is quite okay, thanks to God.
About my eyes: I wait for Grace's case to be sorted out and at the same time for my body to gain some strength, then I will make a new appointment for the surgery. I thank God I am getting better day after day
Lucy is well and doing quite okay, working hard at the college. I keep checking on her from time to time. It is my prayer that she will be successful in life, God willing.
On Tuesday 18th July 2017 the secondary school boys came home because 2 dormitories in the school were burnt down by some of the students; one on Friday the 14th and the other one on Monday 17th very early in the morning. I called the school director that Tuesday who confirmed the story and he also confirmed to me that our boys were not involved in any way. (Arson in schools is, unfortunately, not a rare occurance. It usually stems from a small grievance which could be related to the coming elections or some other matter – Ed)
Some of maize and beans planted towards the end of March have survived despite the long drought, but now we have had some rain at least for sometime continuously and we hope and trust that it will continue God willing. Most of the maize has come back to life but most of the beans dried up. There are cabbages and tomatoes in the greenhouse and some outside; the kales (sukuma wiki) are also coming back to life. This has been the first time for us to buy vegetables. Thanks to God we usually grow our own food. We have discovered that many children‘s homes have been badly affected by the food problem in the country.
Our animals and the birds are doing well.
The gardeners keeping coming and going. Now we have a new one who has been here for two weeks since the previous one left but Moses is still there working very hard. The rest of the staff are doing well and also trying to work hard.
The long drought in Kenya has increased the costs of running Riziki quite significantly and our medical costs have also been high but so far we have just been able to meet these costs and trust that this will continue to be the case. The children continue to be very appreciative of what they receive at, and from, Riziki. It is always a joy to spend time with them when we are at Riziki. This is mainly because Julius and all the team at Riziki really love these young people and Diana and I thank God for all they do at Riziki.
1. For adequate rain to support the crops, not just at Riziki but throughout East Africa.
2. For strength for the Riziki staff, especially Julius and his health problems.
3. Peace over and after the election period.
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.
For donations from within UK:-
The best way to make a donation to Riziki is through The Aenon Trust. This a UK charity which facilitates giving to projects including several children's homes in Kenya. Donations by UK taxpayers may be Gift Aided through The Aenon Trust. All such giftings are transferred to the projects in full by the Trust, with no deductions
Cheques should be made payable to The Aenon Trust and sent to:-
Mr A.E.Nicholls MBE FRGS, 137 Belvedere Road, Bexleyheath, Kent, DA7 4PA , with a note saying the gift is for Riziki. Allan's email is firstname.lastname@example.org
Direct payments can be made to:- NATWEST BANK, Bexleyheath, Sort Code 51-70-14, for the credit of The Aenon Trust, Account No 36591483. If using this method an email should be sent to Allan to let him know the gift is for Riziki.
If preferred, gifts may be sent through us at Wayfields, Briar Court, HOLMFIRTH, HD9 2JJ.
Donations from elsewhere may be sent to either of the above.
Regular donations can be made by Standing Orders. I can supply Gift Aid declaration forms or Standing Order forms, for regular donations, if desired.
Gaggia Caffe Shop, based in Elland has a feature on Riziki on their website. This can be accessed on www.gaggiacaffe.tv. Our own Riziki website is accessed on http://www.riziki.org.uk.