Because most street vendors and informal small businesses have lost their income due to the curfew, more and more calls for help from “former” mothers reach us.
That is why we started issuing grocery packages last week. Not an easy task, because we have to meet the mothers somewhere on the side of the road, because you can only get into the slums on foot and because we have to be careful not to arouse envy or even hostility from our neighbours.
Our social workers can only speak to the mothers from inside the car to avoid any risk of infection.
We thank all our friends who made this aid package offer possible!
Greetings to all our dear friends and those who read our homepage! We hope you are in good health and everything is going well.
These days we receive quite some emails from friends who are worried about the situation at the NEST. So today let me then join the many “corona up-dates”!
But first of all, we want you to know that it is very encouraging for us to know that we are remembered in thoughts and prayers and even extra donations! Even though many of you are hit by the impact of this pandemic they have not forsaken us! We feel moved and humbled and safe in your “hands”!
Reading the signs on the wall, I was prepared for hard ship in 2020. When learning about the locust invasions in Ethiopia, Sudan and Kenya I knew that the prices for dry food will rise and stocked up our stores with beans, maize, lentil, flour, rice, sugar etc.
Then the news of the virus having spread to Europe reached us. So, I purchased enough sanitizers, masks, gloves and soap before the big run on them started.
Meanwhile, the official rate of infections in Kenya stands by 142 with 4 fatalities. However, it is estimated that there might be a significant number of unreported or unknown cases. One of the deceased is the Kenya Airways pilot who brought in the last flight from New York with Kenyans on board. Sad.
As soon as the first confirmed infection case was noted, the government reacted surprisingly fast. Schools, universities and restaurants were closed down. There is transparency in information, clear instructions on how to keep hygiene, tax relief for businesses and individuals, special programs for the elderly. All flights, except cargo, were banned. Many countries have since “evacuated” their nationals. This was quite an effort and, in some cases, very chaotic. We had 3 volunteers and some visitors at the NEST when Nairobi airport was closed. It was quite a challenge to get them to Mombasa from where the German government operated and on the chartered planes.
The Nest Project is, of course, affected by these rules, too. For the past 2 weeks there is also a country wide night curfew and since yesterday Nairobi is landlocked. We are working on getting a special permit to travel between Limuru and our Half-Way House.
However, the children themselves are not inconvenienced, apart from the older ones who have to do home schooling now. The Limuru NEST Home is buzzing with activities! The schoolchildren are just happy having the older ones around to help them with homework. All of them are quite creative in entertaining each other! The little ones anyway do not understand what is happening but enjoy getting a lot of attention from the staff.
That is because all employees are resident since the 16th of March. This decision was done on a volunteer basis. Apart of 3 employees everyone wanted to stay!!!
It was a logistic master piece to find beds, mattresses, blankets and space for everyone. Also cooking utensils, cutlery and gas cylinders had to be bought. Sharing rooms was also a concern, things like tribe or likes and dislikes had to be observed. And of course, we had to take each employee home, using the NEST vehicle, so that they could organize their household and/or make sure their children are safe. Most of them sent their children to their families in the countryside.
However, all is well now and our employees are growing together to be a big family! Of course, it is a challenge to get enough fresh food for 65 grown-ups and 120 children but with the help of god and our friends we will manage that, too.
As much as we try to make the situation bearable for the staff by offering activities like yoga, movie evenings, dress making lessons, opening our training salon to them, special dinners on Sunday and of course prayer times. Sunday service can only be watched on TV but as we are a small community this is still nice!
These are the news for now! We are thankful that we are all in good health, that we have enough to eat and a safe place to stay! “Let us see our blessings and name them one by one and see all the good our LORD has done!”
We thank all of you, our well-wishers and friends, our donors and those who remember us in thoughts and prayers! We wish you the best – peace of mind and good health!
Irene & NEST Team
The NEST Project’s Team and the Children wish all our friends a Merry Christmas!
Your support during 2019 made us strong! Thank you so much!
The NEST-children love to play football. And so do the children from the surrounding village. They play frequently and with enthusiasm! Then they are ONE, the children from around and the children from the Home! And many of them dream the same dream: to one day be a famous football player!
… we found a newborn right in front of the entrance. It was dark, cold and rainy. But now the little one is doing well with us.
The NEST Project’s Team and the Children wish all our friends a Happy Easter!
Thank you so much for your support!
As promised earlier, we have more pictures of the goat twins. They grow and grow and are very active.
As soon as there is space, new babies are coming to the NEST.
The first picture is showing Bridget, Carol and Michelle (left to right) when they arrived. Half a year ago, they had been given to another children’s home, because their mother was convicted of child neglect.
Although already two years old, Carol can not sit or hold her head by herself. Furthermore, she had an infection of the middle ear. After only three month at the NEST, she has improved a lot. Daily training and a lot of love help her to overcome the development deficit.
Latest achievement: She can sit own her own and gets interested in toys. And the best is: she has learned to laugh!
Are you interested how the story continues? News follows soon.
This baby came to us last night from a police station. It was picked up by a 10 year old girl from the trash. It lay in a carton box and was surrounded by three cats. The cats made a lot of noise and that is how the girl found the baby.
The Nest has a very nice library that contains more than 2,000 books about all different topics and for all age groups. The library has now been cleaned and the books have been sorted by age group. Furthermore, a lending system has been introduced. The older kids can under supervision of a staff member borrow books any time. Then, they have to bring the books back on their own authority.
The older kids are going on a hiking and camping trip. On the first day, the kids spent time at the “Kipipiri Forest”, which belongs to the “Aberdare” mountain range. After a rainy (night) hike, the kids are going to “Mt. Longonot” next day. They stay for two nights, enjoy the sunshine and the stunning view at the top of the volcano.
During the school holidays, a holiday program for the kids is set up. They enjoy soccer, cycling, skating, nature walks and other activities. For the older kids, there is a tournament with various competitions and an overall ranking. There are prices to win and at the end everybody enjoys ice cream.
New members in the Nest. This time it’s the goats that have babies. The twins delight kids and visitors. We will keep you updated with more pictures soon.
Knock, knock who is there? Its plenty of children in class, studying hard and learning for life. Our children at The Nest go to our one-room schoolhouse across the road where they are being taught by our teachers. Whenever you get there you find a busy atmosphere of little students who are aware that education will change who they are.
We would like to remind you of the needs of our women at the Halfway House. We tend to talk about their children and yet it is the mothers whom we rely on to reintegrate our children from prison. Up to 10 women go in out of our Halfway House at a time, some stay longer, others come and go. Our socialworkers counsel them and try to plant a seed of hope in each and every heart. Daily workshops help the women gain self-confidence and with time they learn how to cope with their lives again. Our socialworkers walk small steps with them but it the end every little step is worth it.
What fun! A group of friends from International School of Kenya (ISK) come to the Nest at Limuru every Wednesday and do Yoga and craft with the kids. This is really special fo our children as they forget about their worries and simply have an afternoon of fun. Thank you guys for coming!
Our older children require school uniforms to visit the local school in Limuru. The rules are very strict and even the socks have to be the right colour. In case the uniform doesn’t dry after washing due to cold weather the child has to stay at home. At the moment we have 16 kids who attend the local school. When we bought them new uniforms the were so happy and sang songs of praise for half an hour!
Its a hot Easter Season this year. Temperatures have gone up even in Limuru, which lies at an altitude of nearly 2000m and is usually sunny with a cool breeze. The rains are yet to come.
During this season the children at The Nest children’s home spend much time outdoors. They start the day by brushing their teeth right outside the front door, they drink their porridge in the morning sun and spend the afternoons playing in the playground. The warm sunshine is much appreciated in Limuru where the laundry often doesn’t dry for days and days….