Kenya, Africa

KEN06a - Moriah School of Discipleship: Partnership Reports



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Report Date: February 2, 2014

Report from BHW Field Director

 

Recent Events

Activities

The first course, a pilot course, has been completed and in general has proved to be a success. The real test of the success will be the ongoing change that happens in the lives of the participants after a few years have passed. 

The participants completed the course on the 19th July 2013 and then went off to various placements for three months before graduating at the end of October. They all graduated. 

New Profiles
Some profiles of those involved in leading the programme:

Loves the quietIsaiah Ochien is involved in farm work and IT for the programme. He grew up in Mathare and is 22 years old. After finishing O levels in 2010 he did a discipleship course with another organisation in 2011 and sees the real benefit of doing this. He wants to study IT and loves being out in the quiet of the countryside. 

He has learned a lot about decision making and the many different types of characters within the group. He feels he has grown a lot and learned to be self motivated. He has grown as a leader and made a lot of new friends. The feedback from people has challenged his life and caused him to move closer to God. 

Dean of students



Philista Ayango Miluka is the Dean of students. She is 29 years old and has studied project management. There are nine children in her family and she is pleased to be able to leave home and come to this rural, quiet place. She comes from Kariobangi where MCO has a hostel.


 

Loves being aloneRose Athiambo Anyano is overseeing the curriculum. She is 22 years old and loves being alone. For much of her youth she had no friends but now has some who are born again. She is an introvert. There are four children in her family and some cousins as well in the house. She wants to be a social worker and work in Mathare Valley. 

She has noticed how different people are while involved in the leadership of the course. She sees them operating as a large group but realises that everyone has specific, unique needs. She says that it is very hard to get to know people from the Valley. They have learned to cope by not telling people things so it is hard to break in below the surface quickly. 

She feels she has learned different leadership skills while on the programme and having the younger children around has taught her other things. She feels that having the younger children has facilitated the breakdown of barriers. They have shown up her lack of growth and how little she knows about the Christian faith. The mentor groups have been a time of real growth for her. 

She has learned new and different spiritual disciplines which has given her new tools to use. It is her first time in leadership and she used to be shy but is now courageous and contributes in decision making.

Future nurseSally Achien Omondi is in charge of the dormitories and health. She is 22 and wants to study in Maseno to become a nurse and work in community health. She would love to stay involved with the programme, in fact all of them said this. She is from a family of six children, her father died in 2004 and the family has been brought up by her mother. 

All of them have been through discipleship courses in 2008 and 2011 run by another ministry on which this programme is based.  

Leader



Paul Mwangi is the leader of the programme and restated that the plan is to bring young people from this discipleship programme into leadership of the programme over time. The overall purpose of the programme is to raise a generation of well equipped, self-sustaining young people. 





Programmes
Paul wants to develop the curriculum further from the experiences they have had and learned from so they can be more effective. This place in a rural area is conducive for the young people to grow. The Mathare Valley is a very difficult place.

The facility is under pressure with the two programmes running at the same time however that will change over the coming years. 

They have had a lack of resources for training and teaching - white boards, books, DVD's etc. 

Those on the programme were recruited from the MCO sponsorship programme, they get first preference. They are then interviewed. 12 of those in the first year were from the sponsorship programme. The second group came from young people Paul knew from his work as a social worker in the Valley. A number of parents asked for their children to be included in this programme and already many others want their children to be part of it after observing the changes in those on the first course. 

 

Changes and Challenges

The influences for these young people in the Mathare Valley are very negative. Here they are learning grace and forgiveness. When they went back to Mathare for a visit, many of them had no friends, they had either disappeared or didn't have anything in common with the ones they knew. 

As the leaders come from the same place as those on the programme and as they know them all, it has at times been difficult to challenge and rebuke them so they have had to learn new skills. 

Most of the participants came with anger, unforgiveness and bitterness. There were many violent reactions. Now they are much more open, they will share and allow others to speak into their lives. Before they would reject any correction or comments. 

They learned to be responsible with property and their own lives. All are in the process of change. 

Paul commented that there were three distinct groups within the group. One group are people who have changed dramatically, others are changing slowly, while in some others there has been little change. I guess that woud be a typical response. 

 

Ideas for the Future

The plan for the future is based around how successful the programme has been in regards to bringing lasting change to those involved. The programme will therefore be run for two more years, 2014 and 2015, and in 2015 a survey will be done of the participants of the programme. On the basis of that information BHW will decide if this is a programme of value and worth repeating.  


Current Issues and Challenges

Running two programmes in the same facility has created some issues. It took some time for the older children to get used to having the younger ones around. It also took time for them to learn respect for others. However, there were great changes in this area. In a sense, these people all knew each other too well from their previous lives and it was easy to bring that up again.

The staff from FAME Children's Home (KEN06) took a long time to get used to having older street smart kids in their facility. They were very different to the younger rural children they were used to working with.