Innocent impressions: A 6 year old's perspective

Written by Matthew Hardie, son of Jennifer Hardie

(Click to download

Matthew’s school presentation entitled

“Matthew’s trip to Kenya: Why I learned that we don’t need everything on earth”)

I’m Matthew Hardie, I’m from London and I’m six years old but I live in Dubai. My family has been sponsoring a little boy called Muli for the past two years. Muli and I have been writing each other letters for two years and I was really excited to meet my brother Muli.

Before we came to visit, my mum and I decided to do some fund-raising for the children. I decided to make 200 cupcakes and cookies and sell them during my school holidays in my mum’s office tower and we raised 2,940 UAE dirhams, which is 60,000 Kenyan shillings or $800 USD! Everyone in my class at school also collected things for the kids – pencils, crayons, reading books, note books, painting things and stickers. My mum’s company also raised money for the kids, in total we gave Hanne & Ted $4,400.

At first I thought that the slum where the children lived was going to be really dirty, not safe and that the children would have no beds and there would be no buildings around it and that all the children would be sad because they had no mums and dads and that made me feel bad. When I arrived I was extremely surprised because they were very happy, the children who live at HHF have a really nice room with beds and they have schools. And as soon as we arrived I was astonished. And also extremely excited, and as soon as I hopped out of the car I ran to go and find Muli but he was right in front of my car door!

Muli showed me his bedroom and he only had one toy. His toy was a big dolly with two pony tails, that he sleeps with. The next thing we did was we went out to play. I was pulling a rope and the other children were trying to catch it. And I sat in a wheelbarrow and they pushed me around! Afterwards a bell got rung and me and Muli stood in front of the whole HHF and they all sang for us for about one hour. And I handed out two footballs, one to Muli and another to Alice. And then we went to go have some lunch and I had a hamburger and Muli had half a chicken and Esther and Stephen had half a chicken. And Hanne was like: “can you eat all this?” and they said “sure!” and they ate everything on their plate but I left half of my hamburger and some chips and they asked if they could take it home and Hanne said yes so they wrapped it up and took it back to HHF and Muli shared it with his friend Little Brian. Brian looks like he is only 8 years old but he is actually 12.

At HHF we saw 125 children. Some had no mums and dads and Hanne found them and she helped them and she made a project for them to live in, and she got some helpers to help her and then it just appeared like that and they got some beds. Some of the kids have no mums and dads because they died. In the hostel they sleep all together and their beds are all in one row and they are all friends together and they never argue. In the day time when the kids wake up in the morning they play. Then they go to school, only for one or two hours. Then they come back to Hanne Howard Fund and they play because they always play. Then they have lunch and then they play again then they have dinner then they play again then they jump in the water to have a bath then they go to bed.

The next day I went back to HHF and I heard a dog howling on the way and then we got there and we arrived at HHF and we got out of the car and the same thing happened – Muli was in front of my car door! Me and Muli went to go play. And then when I guessed play was nearly over I went to go ask Hanne if I could ring the bell and she said yes. When the scouts came out I rang the bell and somebody wouldn’t stop playing so I rang the bell in their ear and said, “can you hear that play is over?” then they all came and they sang a very long song for us. And then the scouts came on stage on the red dirt and I helped them put up the stage. They did a dance and they asked me and mum and Alexandra and Sebastian to do a dance with them, and we did. And when it finished the scouts were all in a line and they asked me, Alexandra, Sebastian, my mum, Ted and Hanne if we could inspect the scouts. And we inspected them.

When we went to Hanne Howard Fund I felt quite happy because it looks like that and they seem very happy. They seemed to have forgotten about their mums and dads. It changed my life because they told me that you don’t need anything. Things like games and chocolate, you don’t need them. They are only for treats. Because they barely had anything.

I would LOVE to go back.

Bye children!


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