By Tom Bode, President
Gidraf and Paul in their new school uniforms.
On January 29, two boys started their first year at Loreto Nakuru Secondary School in Nakuru, Kenya on scholarships provided by World Scholarship Initiative. The scholarships, funded by donations, pay for the boys’ tuition and boarding for four years at the Catholic school. We are excited to watch them learn and mature as they take advantage of this life changing opportunity.
Despite challenging circumstances, Gidraf did very well in primary school. Before moving to boarding school, he lived with his mom and six younger siblings, his father being married to someone else. His mother worked as house help, a common job for poor women in Kenya. Money was tight and Gidraf occasionally took side jobs to earn money for the family. He also worked for at his primary school (such as weeding the school farm) to earn lunch money. As his teacher, I remember him as the type of student who sat in the back, but paid close attention and frequently had the correct answer when no one else did. His favorite and best subject was Science. Being a boy in Kenya, he loves soccer and is a big fan of the British Premier League.
Paul also overcame challenges to succeed in primary school. Before starting secondary school, he lived with his father and three older siblings, as his mother died when Paul was very young. His father does unskilled work, such as delivering water on a bicycle (many homes do not have running water and have jugs of water delivered by bike) or working as a night security guard. I also taught Paul, and remember that he was always very polite and friendly, and although a bit shy around adults, he had many friends among the other students. His favorite subject is math and he also loves British Premier League soccer.
We selected Gidraf and Paul to receive these scholarships because of their high performance in primary school and their financial need. Three girls from the same primary school were awarded scholarships last year.
I knew both of these students and I am extremely pleased that we are able to award them these scholarships. I am sure they will do well. Thank you everyone for your support in making this amazing thing happen!