Term 2, 2020
Warm greetings from Joska center! Here are the second term center updates. The term started on 4th January, 2021 which was very unusual for our Kenyan academic calendar which has been changed following the Covid-19 pandemic. We are, however, happy that we had a successful school term and that all activities took place as planned. This was a great relief because we had great fears of interruptions due to the pandemic. We also rejoice because the Lord protected us from the pandemic. While we did not have any case reported in school, the pandemic has had both direct and indirect effects on our families. We know you have been praying for us and we thank you for your prayers and support.
Center Manager, Joska
Total Enrolled: 1081 students
Total Unsponsored: 330 students
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Hope Transforms: A Success Story
Zarah is one of the brightest students we have at Missions of Hope International (MOHI) Joska center. She is currently in grade seven and a boarder at our school. Zarah lives with her mother in Nairobi’s Baba Dogo area and also with her brother and sister.
Last year, after the Covid-19 pandemic was announced, the government required schools to close and every child to return home. Zarah went home and unfortunately became pregnant during that long out-of-school break. The mother knew that she was pregnant and due to her harsh words and aggressiveness, Zarah ran away from home. She joined a clique of girls in Mathare slums who introduced her to a gang of men from Mathare. She started cohabiting with one of them and they relocated to Joska where her mother couldn’t trace her.
This issue of teenage pregnancy is one of the challenges MOHI seeks to overcome but when it does happen, we reach out to keep the girl in school. As MOHI we believe that nothing should hinder the young mother’s access to quality education. So when schools reopened in January 2021 and Zarah was nowhere to be found, we started looking for her.
We finally had a breakthrough after she was spotted by one of our learners. After we found Zarah, we asked her to stop cohabiting and instead stay with one of our female staff members and she agreed. We continued to counsel her and after a week, she agreed to come back to school.
Zarah was well received by staff and her fellow learners. We organized for her to receive all the support she needed and we thank God that she is now reconciled with her mother. Zarah has gone through a tremendous transformation, she has accepted her state and wants to come back to school after having her baby and we have told her she is welcomed back to school after nursing her baby. We pray that she will keep her promise and resume her studies.
In our 2021 student council nominations, Zarah was nominated as the dining hall captain by the outgoing student council. This was a clear indication of the confidence her fellow students have in her. Zarah will be considered for leadership in the next session once she comes back to school.
Please join us as we pray that Zarah will have a safe delivery and that she will come back to school. We also pray for God’s continued provision and grace for her mother who will remain with the child to enable Zarah to go back to school.
- The school carried out assessments arranged by the national examining body. These took place in two shifts; grade eight and four and finally the other grades in primary school. After analysis, it was very clear that academic performance had dropped country-wide. However, as a center we are grateful because:
- Our school maintained a steady performance because of the online teaching that was put in place during the Covid break.
- Grade 12 learners have been having regular testing. We had different external examiners come to school and guide the learners on how to tackle the national exams, which were completed in April.
- We are happy that during the term, all our learners were able to write letters to their sponsors. It was very exciting for them to connect with their sponsors and show their love and appreciation for all they do.
- The school had a successful board of management meeting on February 11th and resolutions were passed that will benefit all learners. Key among these is the setting up of a parents welfare fund to support a student who loses their parent(s).
- We held a grade eight parents sensitization meeting to prepare the parents as their children get ready to transition to grade 9. All Covid protocols were observed.
- MOHI’s mentorship team organized a teacher/mentee training that was held on January 15th. This was to offer support to our learners who may be in need of counseling. Plans to have weekly training, career talks and life skill sessions were put into place.
- We also put frameworks to boost our center’s spiritual programs with support from, not just the Spiritual Discipleship Officers (SDO), but also the teachers and social workers.
- On January 10th, we had a visit from members of Summit Christian Church. They attended the Sunday service with the learners and afterward a tour of the school was conducted.
- A member from Agristewards spent time with our learners from February 27th to March 6th. He watched a Christian movie with them on the evening of February 27th and it was an educational as well as a fun experience. He spent time training the farmhands and 4K club patrons on farming God’s way and they planted spinach and watermelon. He also extended his visit to the Outreach Hope Church where he reached out to the community to share the word of God with them.
- Prayers for all MOHI learners, both primary and high school, as they each transition to the next level of education.
- Prayers for completion of the ongoing construction of tuition blocks and dormitories. It will be great to have more space to accommodate the overwhelming needy cases that need our intervention.
- Pray for our associates and partners; for God’s divine protection and provision. They have been a great support in restoring hope to disadvantaged communities.
- We pray that Covid-19 will come to an end.
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