Church in Kenya rises to meet practical needs

About this time last year, we learned about a local church in Kenya that chose to go against the flow of society by reaching out to the outcast: people living with HIV/AIDS. You can read that uplifting story here.

Today, I want to tell you about another church in Kenya that has led its community in providing education for its children.

Parkishon is a rural community in Northern Kenya where long droughts and famine are too familiar. Previously, families would migrate to find water during the dry season, making a regular school schedule for children almost impossible.

Over the past nine years, FH has partnered with the churches, leaders and families in Parkishon to bring clean water, increase people's overall physical health, strengthen the local schools, and equip the church to meet the needs of the community.

Education has been a major focus since a lack of value placed on education only helps poverty persist generation after generation.

The transformation that has taken place over the last nine years can be seen in the lives of two boys who were given the chance to grow and learn, thanks to sacrifices made by their church community. The boys performed well in their high-school entrance exams, but their parents simply couldn't afford the fees to continue sending them to school.

Even in the midst of drought and an extreme lack of resources, the church community saw the value of investing in these boys. Working with another local ministry, they collected a whopping $625 for the boys' school fees.

In Parkishon, the typical monthly income for an entire household is $50. This sum of money is the monthly earnings of almost 13 households — a huge sacrifice.

“God is indeed transforming the mindset of this community,” our field colleagues report.

This isn't the only example of a changed mindset toward a greater value on education. Before this, the community raised $700 to help two young men in their first year of college. While this sum didn't cover all their expenses, it gave them a start and enabled them to access grants through the school.

True transformation and long-term solutions to extreme poverty take time, and Parkishon is an example of this. Parkishon's children, thanks to support from their own community, are receiving the chance to learn and grow as God intended.