Last month brought a large volunteer group to Nyumbani. In January a group of 5 adults and 13 high school students arrived in Kenya, led by longtime Nyumbani friend Clare Lennon O’Reilly. The students hailed form approximately 14 different high schools in Ireland. Almost every year Clare brings a group of students from Ireland to Kenya to visit all three Nyumbani programs, helping out wherever needed. Her yearly trips started out with her kids and their friends and have now grown into an amazing high school service program. Each student fundraises to pay the trip’s expenses and collects a great amount of donated goods to bring to Nyumbani’s children.
The first Nyumbani program the group visited was Lea Toto. They spent a day learning about the program, visiting families, shadowing a social worker and painting two rooms and gates in each of 3 Lea Toto center locations.
In subsequent days, the group spent time at Nyumbani Children’s Home, helping with projects and entertaining children. They hosted a “fun day” for the children with waterslides, trampolines, clowns and a magician. The Irish group also took children from the Home on fieldtrips to nearby attractions like the David Sheldrick Elephant Orphanage.
The final Nyumbani program that the students visited was Nyumbani Village, 2 hours east of Nairobi. They participated in many activities, helping the Village projects wherever needed. This included milking goats in the livestock unit, potting honey and sifting moringa leaves in the sustainability department, and helping varnish desks in the Village polytechnic.
They even learned how to weave baskets from the susus! The group also sorted and distributed donations like clothes and shoes to the 1000 Village children, many of the donations being brought over by the students themselves. The volunteer trip ended with the group returning to Nairobi for one last day at the Children’s Home before flying home to Ireland. The trip was an amazing experience for all involved.
“This trip was an absolutely incredible journey meeting people that I will not forget.”
– volunteer Anneliese F.
Nyumbani is ever deeply grateful for the service and support from our increasing number of donors and volunteers who, like this Irish school group, contribute so much to the Kenyan programs.
Thank you to the Irish volunteers for sharing their experience and photos. The amazing photos in this post were taken by trip member Jack Creagh (Check him out at http://jackcreaghphotography.com)