Pleasant Surprise from Unlikely Angels

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It takes a village to educate underprivileged Kenyan Kids and ensure that the cycle of poverty is broken.

This saying has always been our mantra. These three beautiful girls reminded us of the many individuals, companies, churches, and other private foundations, who have stood by Rehema to ensure that our scholars have resources to pursue their education beyond middle school.

We were pleasantly surprised when Sue, a die-hard Rehema supporter shared with us pictures of Ella, Kalia, and Savannah putting lemonade stand to benefit Rehema’s efforts. We are incredibly grateful to the parents of Ella, Kalia, and Savannah for supporting their efforts to raise funds for Rehema.

We cannot thank you enough for your generosity and for believing in our noble cause. We are eternally grateful for your gesture.

Rehema Education Fund Announces 2019 Scholars

Rehema Education Fund awarded a total of 14 new high school scholarships from the just concluded high school application.

All credit goes to our donors and sponsors for believing in our cause. Your donation(s) throughout the year and especially during 2018 Giving Tuesday exceeded our expectations, leading to more scholarship awards than initially anticipated. Thank you so much for your generosity.

The 2019 incoming Rehema scholars are Sandra, Jafari, Ekaru, Victor, Mwandume, Zablon, Samuel, Immaculate, Ian, Gracious, Alfred, Susan, Muthini, and Selesa.

Congratulations to our new scholars, their families, guardians, communities, and educators.


Perseverance Pays Off for Florence

Despite the Kenyan government’s policy of free primary (elementary/middle) school education, the monies that are set aside for schools are often not enough to meet specific needs of individual schools. This shortage results in schools turning to parents to pay part of the fees to help cover and facilitate mandatory school projects and student activities. While in primary school, Florence and her siblings were sent home on multiple occasions because they were unable to cover these fees.

Aaron's Story

Aaron, standing outside Kenya University School of Law, where he is currently in his third year.

Aaron, standing outside Kenya University School of Law, where he is currently in his third year.

My dad died in 2009 when I was 12 years old and a year before I was to sit for my final primary school national exams: the Kenya Certificate of Primary Education (KCPE). When I finally did my KCPE exams in 2010, I scored 380 points out of 500, and was admitted to Maranda High School. Unfortunately, I was not able to join this or any other high school due to lack of money that would have covered school fees and tuition. It was extremely frustrating for me not being able to join any high school despite having performed well. Although I was disappointed, I did not give up on my education. I took it positively and in 2011, I went back to my former primary school, and enrolled in class eight (final grade in primary school). I also registered to do the national exams again. At this time, all my former classmates had gone on to high school. What this meant was that I now had to repeat all my classes with students who had been a grade behind me the prior year. This left me feeling very demoralized but I did not let it derail my efforts, I worked hard, performed well in all my classes and prepared to sit for a second time for the KCPE exams.

…I told myself to stay focused, to draw strength from my frustrations and to believe in myself.

Unfortunately, my mother passed away a few months before I was to sit for these exams. I have to admit, at this point, life seemed so unkind and unfair to me. I felt so sad and I felt like I had nothing left to give and nobody to believe in me. But I told myself to stay focused, to draw strength from my frustrations and to believe in myself. I knew if I hoped for a better life, then I had to put extra efforts in to my studies. When I sat for the national exams, I scored even higher than the first time (405 points out of 500). I was ecstatic! I also found out about a scholarship offered by the Equity Bank through their Wings to Fly program and I applied for it and won the award. With this scholarship, I was able to join one of the top high schools in Kenya: Upper Hill School and 4 years later, I graduated with an average score of A- and was accepted into Kenyatta University School of Law.

The first year and a half of college was financially challenging. Every year I needed 100,000 Kenyan shillings (approximately $1000) to pay for my tuition and university associated fees, my accommodation, books, food and other personal needs. I qualified for the Higher Education Loans Board (HELB) loan but it only covered half of my financial needs. If I had not won the university scholarship offered by Rehema Education Fund, I would have been forced to call off my studies. The Rehema scholarship has enabled me to continue uninterrupted with my studies.

After graduating from university, it is a requirement that law students go to Kenya School of Law, for a two year training period. After this, graduates are admitted to the bar as advocates to the high courts of Kenya and can start their legal practice career. Kenya School of Law is not free; I am currently trying to save as much money as I can to facilitate these future studies. After this, it has always been my dream to further my education so as to be as competitive as possible in the job market. To realize this dream I intend to graduate with first class honors and get a scholarship to do my Masters.

Giving back to the society is one thing I am always passionate about. I have been part of the Equity Leadership Program, in which we voluntarily offer mentorship to Wings to Fly scholars and other students in various high schools. After graduation I plan to be actively involved in this program and other programs like it, to share my experiences with other students to enable them to unleash their full potential and realize their own goals and dreams.

Every challenge that I have gone through thus far, has been a valuable lesson for me and a preparation for what life has to offer.

The death of both of my parents was perhaps the hardest challenge I have ever had to deal with in my life. Not only did I have to come to terms with the reality of their loss but I also had to somehow find a way to fill the void they left behind. I have had to be there for my brothers, to console them and to embolden them in their efforts to push forward with their lives. I have found myself being the parent and the brother. I have also had to be the disciplinarian whenever they have done something wrong. This role has been particularly difficult for me. I myself I am still young and in need of guidance. Over the years, my grandmother has been of tremendous help to me. She has played a central role in helping me overcome my fears. She has advised me on my new role and in spite of her old age, has sacrificed a lot for our well-being. We found a mother in her and through her advice I have been able to encourage my brothers and positively impact their lives. She has taught me to always draw positive energy from life’s challenges and hope for the best. I tell my story so that it can encourage, comfort and inspire others to be determined in everything they do. My hope is that my story helps to lift up those who are going through difficult times and encourage those who are blessed to pay it forward.

Water OR Education?

Water OR Education?

Rehema Education Fund, funded the construction of borehole (well), at Mulumini Secondary School. Mulumini is located in semi-arid Ukambani. Students at Mulumini used to walk several miles to get water. We wanted to ensure that these students spend more time at school studying, and not fetching water.

Joseph's Story

Joseph and Theresa (one of our co-founders) last year in Kenya.

Joseph and Theresa (one of our co-founders) last year in Kenya.

My father passed away when I was 7. He was a mechanic and the breadwinner of my family. After his death, life became so miserable that at times we could only afford to get a meal after a day or two. My sister and I suffered from Kwashiorkor because of this. Kwashiorkor is a condition that results from malnutrition specifically due to a lack of protein in the diet. I also remember days when we missed school due to prolonged starvation. I dreamt of the day I would be able to help feed not only my family, but also my community, and my country Kenya. I knew that this dream and passion could only be achieved through hard work at school. I developed an interest in agriculture and was excited when I passed my Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education (KCSE) exam and got accepted to Masinde Muliro University of Science and Technology. Unfortunately, I had no way of paying for my school fees and tuition.

Rehema Education Fund’s scholarship found me when I had lost all hope. The Fund offered to pay my school fee and tuition, and my accommodation and upkeep while in school. This scholarship has taken the worry of money from my mind such that I can now give my studies my undivided attention (I now major in Agriculture and Biotechnology) and also have time to socialize with my family and friends . It has also given me the opportunity to meet and network with people from different parts of the world. Honestly speaking, Rehema Education Fund has made me and my family smile again.