2016 Shining Stars: From education to graduation and beyond

2016 Shining Stars: From education to graduation and beyond

Written by Ted Horton, HHF founder

2016 has been another wildly successful year! We’d love to share some of this year’s educational achievements and milestones with you.

Before I begin, I’d like to share an inspiring story.  Today, I stopped in to say ‘hello’ to Mike Bundi, one of our HHFL kids at the I&M Bank branch where he works at Wilson airport. Mike came into our lives in 2006 as an HIV AIDS orphan in primary school. Mike is now in his 3rd year with I&M Bank and has been promoted twice. He happily told me that he plans to go back to the Kenyan Institute of Monetary Studies next year to upgrade his diploma in banking and finance to a full degree. It will take him another 2 years to get it done but he is determined to enhance his qualifications and career prospects. Way to go – we are so proud of you, Mike! You can read a bit more about Mike on our blog  - check him out here.

2016 EDUCATION SNAPSHOT

Since 2006, 140 desperately poor children have passed or are still passing through HHF’s doors. We have graduated 70 primary school children and 51 high school children.

We are currently supporting 46 primary school kids, 24 high school kids and 13 full-time college / university / vocational students. Nine high school graduates are presently employed. They are saving and waiting for funding so they also can pursue their dream of a post secondary education.

We are so excited to share that 26 HHFL children have become self-reliant due to HHF’s full support. They have also become donors by committing 5% of their salaries every month to HHFL primary school education. The first HHFL Scholarship is expected to be awarded in September 2017!

Three alumni have been chosen to sit on HHFL’s Board of Directors –  Mercy Achieng, John Mutahi and Mike Bundi. They have been taking responsibility for the every day running of the project.

2016 PRIMARY SCHOOL ACHIEVEMENTS:

All the HHFL kids attending St. Nicholas primary school make us proud.  However, we are very happy to announce that this year, the “Academic Award for Excellence” has been awarded to three HHFL kids – Michelle Adhiambo, Grade 7 (repeat winner); Snorine Lihavi, Grade 8 and Alfred Onyancha, Grade 3. This is a school-wide honour.

Snorine was voted 2016 School President by the entire student body! Congratulations!

2016 HIGH SCHOOL STUDENT ACHIEVEMENTS: 

Mary Wairimu, Grade 12 (age 17) has received the “Academic Excellence Award” for the past 3 years in her high school.  She also has been continuously nominated as a school prefect.  She excels in all fields but particularly loves sciences, math and computers.

Samuel Mumo, Grade 12 (age 18) excels in music and sang as a tenor in the school choir.   In the national high school choir competition, they placed first, which led to a televised singing performance for the President.

OTHER 2016 ACHIEVEMENTS 

Akirachix is an IT training organization for young women and they run yearly ICT Boot Camps to engage more women in technology in Kenya. They have been sponsoring HHFL girls for the past 4 years, a privilege earned by our kids due to their energetic involvement, interest and high level of participation during the week long seminar in Nairobi.  Every year between 5 to 10 kids are invited to participate.  This year, they extended the invitation to young men and we sent four eighth graders – Elizabeth Letoto, Virginia Njeri, Rosemary Njeri and Nico Mdunda. They won first prize for their creation of an automatic walking stick!  Nicodemus delivered the presentation to a panel of judges comprised of high profile businessmen and women.

John Mutahi was crowned one of 2016′s winners of the Mobile Arts School in Kenya’s art prize in the category of Visual Arts. John has submitted work over the past 2 years but this was the first year he won. John is studying Art and Design at Polytechnic University and has started a small art and design business with his classmate called Morphed.  John is also on HHFL’s Board of Directors.

2016 POST SECONDARY GRADUATIONS

Samuel Waweru and Gabriel Lando just completed their 3-year diploma course in aircraft maintenance at the Nairobi Aviation College. They are both living a dream neither thought was possible 7 years ago when they joined HHFL at the start of high school. HHFL fully supported these you men to reach this milestone and embark on the career of choice that they both love. In January, they return to Tropic Air in Nanyuki (one of the top maintenance shops in Kenya). They each did 2×3 month attachments at Tropic while they completed their studies. The folks at Tropic are happy to have them back. HHFL will finance the first six months of this internship (total cost $1,700) and then hopefully they will be able to find other outside financial support to complete the two -year pre-licensing qualification period. Samuel and Gabriel, all of the best to you both.

Mercy Achieng completed a 4-year Bachelor of Commerce degree at Strathmore University with special thanks to The First Group. Upon completing, she was offered a full time job as a Faculty assistant at Strathmore’s business school.  She has started a small jewelry business called Kitenge Bracelets by Kangsy. Mercy is also on HHFL’s Board of Directors and leads the WAO initiative.

Priscah Mulei graduated from the Kenya School of Accounting where she pursued a 1 1/2 year long ICT diploma which she impressively paid for on her own.

Samson Makau graduated from Amboseli College in Food Production and has his sights set on becoming a chef.

Magdaline Nzisa graduated from Don Bosco, a technical training college where she pursued a year long secretarial course.

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