Peacemakers: e-link Bulletin No.15 May 2018

A  Volunteer In Kenya!

Three years on and a return visit to Peacemakers Kenya …. wow what a difference!
It was truly amazing to see all that had happened and the huge progress that is making such an impact on the local community : the computer room in regular use,

the library stocked with a fantastic selection of books and resources, and the ever expanding “farm”, with livestock, an incubator for chicken production and the wonderful greenhouse producing yet more plants for selling on.

It was especially exciting to see how successful the impressive café is proving. Now up and running and supporting the community with superb hospitality and such impressive food that even the guests who had rented it for the day asked to take any spare food home with them !

What hadn’t changed of course was the warm welcome, the gratitude and friendliness of the Kenyan people, young and old, where the sun shone out from their very souls.

This time my visit was predominantly to support the local schools with “Purposeful Play”, inspired by Brenda`s daughter, Kim. I was lucky enough to visit three local settings where I was able to demonstrate the importance of play to support physical development, particularly with the youngest children in Nursery and Reception classes. Not only did the children have great fun but the adults definitely did as well ! These play resources can now be borrowed from the Peacemakers` Resource Centre whenever desired, and enjoyed for many years to come.

It is with huge thanks to friends and family who supported my fundraising that not only was I able to take out a fantastic range of resources but I was also able to give money to fund the construction of a more stable and secure driveway down onto the site. This means that they have now accessibility for all. This is especially important to the visitors who arriving by wheelchair, found the route down to the worship hall, resource area and café impossible. How amazing was it that within hours of handing over the money, lovely Zongo and team were preparing the driveway and within days it had been completed !!

Provision for all, including the more vulnerable allows Peacemakers to reach far into the community, to touch the lives of so many people. Visiting families with clothes, supporting with medical needs and all with the cheerful anticipation that the steadfast truck may just need a little hand now and then !

None of this would have been made possible without the support and dedication of Brenda, working tirelessly here in the UK. And of course, to lovely Chrissie and her wonderful “right hand man”, Isaac; it is with such heart-felt thanks that my love goes out to them and all the wonderful team out in Kenya. Thank you for your incredible hospitality and supporting everything I achieved.

Some how humour and God`s love gets them through each and every day and each and every challenge !

I have returned with such very special memories and feel truly honoured that I could spend just a short while with them.
Thank you again Peacemakers; thank you Kenya !
Liz Darlington x

e-link bulletin No.13 Jul 2017

All in all, the walk was a great success from the point of view of promoting our prayers for a Peaceful Election Year.  We visited the offices of six Governors.  We were also on national television giving our message.  We raised a total of just over £1,000 which has been used to support the urgent medical needs of several children within our community.  We are still ‘Open’ for donations.

As we travelled around Mt. Kenya, many people were curious and supportive.  We were also truly blessed by the encouragement of many to keep going.  We are indebted to 75 year old Isaac Gacugo, for being inspired to do the walk. Also to his young companion; Isaac Richard who was his escort and monitor.
Thank you everybody for your support and prayers. Christine.

Malaika Tribute Award

As part of Links International's development, with whom we are partners, they are becoming a Charitable Incorporated Organisation (CIO) – Registered Charity No: 1168872.

This means that all our friends and supporters who are giving regularly through Standing Order or intermittent gifts, are kindly asked to fill in a new Gift Aid Declaration form under this new Charity Number. Please click on this link to print off a form. Everything else continues the same!

As we grow and take steps of faith into the future, we would ask you to consider whether this may also be an opportunity to increase your giving, or just give a regular small amount for the maintenance and upkeep of the Resource Centre. Donation forms are here! Thank you so much for your investment into Peacemakers; we really appreciate your faithful support as we confront poverty and create potential. Donation form link for printing.

Tom Beak is wanting to return to Kenya later on this year and Liz Darlington is wanting to be involved in the starting of a pre-school class. Again later on this year, maybe you would like to join them on the trip! We have always encouraged young & old people to come to Kenya, and give of themselves and serve the local community. To Students and anybody that has been to Kenya in the past and taken training sessions, we invite you to come and see the Resource Centre and help us in the transition period and also in the future. In a sense, to become voluntary guardians to the project.
Students usually have to pay charities large amounts of money to volunteer in Africa, but with us its free! You only have to pay your own expenses to have a ‘hands on‘ experience from day one which will be life changing!

We are so thankful to all our friends and supporters, who’ve helped us to achieve wonderful results in financially difficult times. Helping the Kenyans to work their way out of poverty with these great facilities for their health and education, not to mention fostering a great community spirit! Let’s thank God for his blessings and allowing us to continue being part of the answer to people’s needs.
Brenda, Chrissie & the team.

e-link bulletin No.10 Sept 2016

We are moving towards the Grand Opening of the Resource Centre and have settled on a date of 25th February 2017, which is usually a dry season!  At present I'm unable to travel to Kenya because I have a couple of leaky heart valves and so cannot cope with the high altitude, remember Nairobi is 6000ft above sea level and the Peacemakers site is on the edge of the lowlands of Mt. Kenya. Consequently, I'm trying to find a person(s) of some standing in the communities to ‘cut the ribbon’.  I’m in touch with my MP Sir Oliver Heald, to help us in establishing a working relationship with the MP responsible for Kenya. It was Nick Hurd MP but since “Brexit” there’s been a reshuffle and it's now James Wharton MP, so I will extend an invitation to him.

So far, we’ve had a few responses from the 34 companies we wrote to in Kenya for future sponsorships. They've sent forms for us to fill-in, which we will return a.s.a.p. We have also recently written to the British Embassy in Nairobi and other Christian organisations.

craft-fundraiser-7  
craft-fundraiser-9
We recently had a couple of fund raising events in August.  Saturday 6th was on our Resource Centre in Kathageri, Kenya, and raised an incredible 142,000 Ksh (£1,150). This shows the support there is with the locals who are benefitting enormously from all the projects initiated through Peacemakers.  Then on the Monday the 8th we held a Craft and Tea Event at Clare and Phil Stokes’ house and raised a further £500.00    

Thank you to all for attending – you now know

what that money is going towards.

Jackie in Kenya, read on below!

You saw in our last Bulletin No..9 that Jackie North, the mother of Sophie was visiting Kenya for the second time.  She was not disappointed and has come back inspired and wants to help with some of the organising leading up to the ‘Opening’.  The main part of her involvement is to keep people in the UK informed of the ‘Walk’ from Mombasa to the Resource Centre arriving 25th February.  An elderly Kenyan, Isaac Gacugo, has volunteered to walk 570 km for Peacemakers, to make it known to all the districts he’ll be walking through, just what Peacemakers have done and brought to his people for free. it will take him 3 weeks; He cannot thank God enough.  So that’s Isaac’s part, Jackie will send out a special bulletin shortly to explain her ideas of how we can all be involved.

The 2 young students, Alice and Hannah have now returned from their visit to Kenya and were involved in the Fund Raiser Day.  They couriered lots of items for us to have a stall on the day, and have returned excited and wanting to help further with the very needy in the area.  More news later.

Update on the progress of the Resource Centre:  We have moved on with the kitchen and restaurant (see pictures below) and now doing grills for security, but we need funds.  The plan is to get to Hygiene level, register for tax and business, train for certificate and inspection, all by October!

It’s now getting very exciting and may I extend an early invitation to you to join all the other Peacemakers to the ‘Opening’ Celebration!

Access to the restaurant!

 
 
 

Above are a couple of pictures showing a new addition to the resource centre! A young heifer, donated by Sammy to supply milk for use at the centre. She's been named 'Mpwenda' in Swahili and when she's old enough she'll be sired, the resultant calves will be placed with schools or groups in the area to supply milk for the needy. She was lonely and pining when she arrived on site, so the handler brought his own calf along to keep her company, ahh! It's also great to see the "Pickup", paid for by a generous friend of Peacemakers, still working hard after all these years!

An update-bulletin will follow shortly.
Every blessing for now,
Brenda.

Thanks for coming to the craft fundraiser!

A great big thank you to everyone who took part in the Craft & Afternoon Tea fundraiser at the end of July. 

Craft Fundraiser

Everyone seem to have a lovely time at Brenda’s home, making decoupage boxes stones and tins. Afternoon tea was pretty scrummy too! The final count is now in and we raised £655 for the Kenyan projects. A huge thank you to everyone who helped & supported us.

Craft Fundraiser

To see more photos from the day, click here to look at the gallery.

e-link bulletin No.7 June 2015

The Dennis Marshall Foundation (DMF) is an inspiration to all, not least the local Kenyan community. They have responded well to become deeply involved in building and developing the final phases of this project under the guidance of our site director Chrissie Gibbard, but we need more expertise and additional funding. Those who visit are overwhelmed by the impact of the project and easily become immersed in the works and activities that take place. The reports below give you a flavour and a list of projects or items that need funding.

How can I help ? We urgently need your help to complete this exciting project, CAN YOU :
    .Organise an event at home or work etc. to raise funds
    .Visit the centre in Kenya for an enthralling time with Chrissie and the team
    .Donate towards projects or general funds

Reading lessons 2Liz Darlington’s visit; Liz and her daughter Emma picked up the vision at a Peacemakers event and raised their own funds before travelling to Kenya. They had a wonderful Kenyan welcome and an exhilarating experience working with the community and helping with the reading programme for the young school children. They also met the HIV ladies who get together to knit and were delighted with balls of wool that were brought over. They met the team working in the nursery growing trees and plants which are sold to raise funds and they enjoyed working alongside the building team who are completing the work on the restaurant, cyber café and craft room. They treasured the experience and were blessed to be in such an inspiring and beautiful place.
Read more details and see the photos from Liz’s recent visit

Liz’s Story:

Read here  ——  Photos here

Chrissie’s Building Progress Report: Kaka Boniface, who is the foreman on site, and his team have made excellent progress with the roof of the main community building and the internal brickwork and plastering. A Study Room, Library, Disabled shower/toilet and Reception area will be incorporated within the building and as a joiner Kaka will then complete the furniture. The Craft Room is in use already but needs shelving and storage. The room for the Ouji Mill (it makes a kind of porridge from a cereal crop) is ready for windows and door and we need to add a sink etc. The Community Café has begun but needs the roof completing and floor concreted. Kaka will build and fit the kitchen but all the equipment and chairs will need to be acquired.

Activities at the CentreCraft room: The Craft Room is now operational but Chrissie would welcome more materials to develop the activities there. Wool for the HIV knitting group is always useful especially green for local school uniform jumpers and if anyone had a knitting machine no longer required this could be refurbished by TWAM (see below) and sent out. There is also a Women’s Coop Group who meet to support the poor, a Prayer Group and the bi-monthly Minister’s meeting. Local groups often meet outside under the Mango tree except when it rains and this can be really heavy. The rain water needs to be collected and more piping and tanks are required to save this valuable resource.

jiggersCommunity Support: There is much being done to support the local community including the poor, the widows and the disabled. Small items of clothing, shoes, blankets and medical items are provided but funds are limited. Children suffer with ‘jiggers’ a worm that enters the feet can be very debilitating but can be cured if treated early. We are also supporting a boy who needs a cornea implant and another who needs an operation to remove a growth on his head. There are many disabled who need guidance with the paperwork to get help including one young student whose father was murdered last year and whose mother struggles with arthritis and scrapes a living selling avocados and bananas. There is also good news about some of our UK sponsored students who have graduated and are now making their own way. We are hosting a National disability forum in June to bring forward many local issues.

Animals and Plants: In the grounds we have pigs, sheep, rabbits, goats, ducks, chickens and beehives all helping to provide food or funds for the Centre. In addition we have a tree nursery which has become a popular place to buy seedlings. One of the disabled boys helps to graft passion fruit trees, tomatoes and avocados. A greenhouse is needed for more delicate plants and to extend the range of vegetables.

Cyber Café: We are asking the local mobile phone provider, Safaricom, to sponsor our Cyber Café but will need computers for it. We are looking for anyone with IT skills for help set up on site or advice on how to equip it.

Reading lessonsReading lessons 3

 

 

 

Reading Project: This is Chrissie’s priority following the French Embassy’s sponsorship last year. This is for the young school children and 10 youths have been trained to help the poorest readers. We have a small collection of graded books but need more. Can you help?

 

 

 

 

TWAM: UK based – Tools with a Mission, refurbish tools and machines free which are then transported in a container paid for by Peacemakers. This is a great help and if funds allowed it would be good to continue.

CAN YOU HELP IN ANY WAY ?
Please contact Brenda by e-mail Brenda.marshall@ntlworld.com

Volunteers in Kenya!

The following is an article By Liz Darlington , who along with her daughter Emma, spent two special weeks volunteering in Kenya at The Dennis Marshall Foundation, Peacemakers International during Easter 2015. If you can cover the costs of your airfare and would like to volunteer with us, please contact Brenda for a chat. It’s an opportunity you won’t regret.

When a random conversation with Brenda`s daughter Kim, last year, leads to an offer from Brenda to visit The Peacemakers International charity project in Kenya it was too good an offer to turn down! At Christmas my daughter Emma, and I met Chrissie and straight away we knew that this trip was meant to be and we had already started planning our “projects” on the journey home!

So with weeks to go we got more and more excited in anticipation of what lay ahead…and we certainly weren`t disappointed! Firstly the welcome we received was truly amazing, Chrissie is just the perfect host, so generous and so caring and such a special person. The Kenyan people share her gratitude and warmth and we were greeted everywhere we went with smiles, waves and shouts of welcome! It was humbling to see just what is being achieved out here at The Dennis Marshall Foundation, supporting the local community providing jobs, support and fellowship to the young, old, disabled and needy.FuntimeThe buildings were in constant use and everyday there was somebody new to meet. Among the people we met were the HIV ladies who were so delighted with arrival of more balls of wool, the craft ladies who insisted we learnt how to make beaded bags, the Nursery team who are growing the most amazing plants , the cheerful cooking  team and of course all the lovely builders so busy working on the buildings, the internet café, the craft room and the restaurant and with these in the process of being finished even more exciting times lie ahead.New Friends

So then to our project, this was to support Chrissie as she introduces a reading programme to children from the local school. Forty six enthusiastic and very well behaved children came along to the centre over two days and twenty six of these we heard read as part of a reading assessment. During this time Emma also played drama games and encouraged the children to participate in a drama production of “Wangari`s Seeds of Peace “. We also hosted two Saturday training days whereupon we showed local teachers and older youth how to support young children in their early reading skills. This is an ongoing project and we hope to keep in touch with how it is progressing and maybe even return to Peacemakers one day to see its impact.ReadingOur stay certainly proved to be as exciting as we`d hoped it would. It`s an experience that we will always treasure and we feel truly blessed that we were able to witness such a special and inspiring place and meet such welcoming people in such a lovely country.

A huge thank you goes to all that we met but especially to wonderful Chrissie, Brenda and of course to Kim, for having that initial conversation with me!!

Please Click Here to view the gallery of great photos Liz & Emma took.

Easter Fundraising Thank you

Due to ill health the Peacemakers team are a little behind with admin. tasks but the show goes on! A very big thank you to the Staff and Parents of Ardeley Village School who got together at an Easter Egg Fundraiser and have made a fantastic donation of £291.95. You can see some of the egg cosies that were made and sold below. A special thanks to Sue Jones for organising and making the event such a success.

Easter Sale

Christmas Letter 2014

Pamoja Restaurantholly

hollyTo all at Christmas time and throughout 2015

“We bring you good tidings of great joy”

This has been a good year where money has been donated to start the construction of a restaurant project as photo’d above. We are about 2/3 of the way into its completion and it will house a clinic, a craft activity training room and a porridge mill under the makuti roof. This work has currently stopped as money has run out and while Christine comes home for a Christmas break.

Then came a different miracle – we had applied for French embassy funding and was successful. It will help us to develop existing structures to enhance lifelong and accessible learning opportunities. Full details in our next e-bulletin. We will be supported to restore and extend (more toilets) Kisimani house, which was damaged by fire in 2013. The building comprises; a study room, community library and reception room. In addition it will have an office and a Cybercafé.

We are so excited about this new development in our programme. As you know the communities in Kenya are already benefiting from our many existing facilities. These include training courses, education, employment and micro enterprise opportunities, all of which have been funded through your loyal and generous support over past years. Let’s thank God for his blessings and allowing us to be part of the answer to many people’s needs. 

Happy Christmas and a prosperous new year to you all.
holly  Brenda & the team holly

e-link bulletin No.5 Sept. 2014

Restaurant construction

Restaurant construction

Restaurant Construction is well under way with the completion of the foundations including the supporting retaining wall. The pillars, walls and ceiling have been cast and plastered plus the setting of bases for the wooden posts which have been soaked and treated prior to wrapping in tin sheet for protection. The Drainage and plumbing has begun. Chicken sheds have been made. In addition there has been work to excavate material for the tree nursery and banana plantation planned for the lower field with steps constructed for access.

Sammy & Chrissie at the Resource Centre

Sammy & Chrissie at the Resource Centre

Funding needs in many areas continues including for a sty to house the several pigs currently on site. Chrissie would prefer them not to be in with her!! In addition we need funding for the restaurant roof (£3000) and to complete the drainage.
Meanwhile, Brenda’s son in Australia is currently producing and selling ‘Home Brew’ (don’t tell Fosters!) to raise £1200 for a porridge mill. The porridge or Uji is a traditional drink made from grains and enjoyed by many at all stages of its fermentation. It can be bitter and the ultimate Kenyan smoothie. With a mill it can be mass produced and marketed to schools etc. or sold on site in the proposed café.
We already hire the facilities currently available but our aim is to complete these outstanding buildings and other works which will bring us closer to making the project self-supporting and to advertise it more widely.

A Funding Event by the UK team is planned for Saturday 25th October. This will be a ‘Race Night’ held at St Peter’s Church Hall, Broadwater Crescent, Stevenage, with a fish & chip supper included in the ticket price of £10. There will be a raffle and the opportunity to buy tickets for any of the eight horses in each of eight races with the takings divided up amongst the winners. Please bring your own drinks + glasses. A tick order slip can be printed from here. Please reply ASAP so we have an idea of the numbers for organisation and catering purposes. The funds raised will be used to kit out the kitchen in the restaurant.

Windsor Half Marathon

Windsor Half Marathon 2013

Another Sponsored Half Marathon Run by Jess Walker will take place on 28 September at Windsor to raise funds for a building to house the Porridge Mill machine. If you wish to support this please confirm to Brenda how much per mile (total 13 miles) or a one-off donation if the course is completed. Sponsor Forms are here!

College sponsorship for Moses has been provided by Matt, a post graduate from Australia who visited the site earlier this year. This will enable Moses to study for his first year on a Biomedical course which will enable him to make a difference in the health and well-being of his community.

Sponsor Disabled Children

Sponsor Disabled Children

Eight disabled students are currently being supported through their schooling by sponsors from the UK who have discovered their needs during visits to the Runyenjes area. They are either physically or mentally disabled and many are making good progress with some able to write touching thank you letters. There is great need for this kind of support but it can be a long term commitment and is not to be entered into lightly.

The Annual Report to Links International has recently been completed by the UK committee to confirm our funding to Kenya and our proposals for the future development of the site at Runyenjes. Links International acts as our partners and administers and processes the gift aid on funds raised. Details of the report are available on request.

News from the site! Chrissie is reporting great progress and a renewed enthusiasm on site and things are really beginning to run more smoothly after a number of problems last year. The Peacemakers Kenya Team is also fund raising at the Resource Centre on 18th October. The needs are great but the Centre is offering wonderful support and a definite community spirit is building. Abram, brother of Isaac who died in 2012, has become Chrissie’s right hand man and is a valuable asset around the site. He is organising a traditional ceremony to resolve his ‘dowry’ from his future wife’s family, which who knows might be anything from cash to cows!

** DON’T FORGET TO BOOK YOUR TICKETS FOR THE RACE NIGHT: Saturday 25th October at 7.00pm. Ticket Slips Can Be Printed From Here!

** THE RACE NIGHT ADVERTISING POSTER Peacemakers Race Night Poster

** DON’T FORGET TO SPONSOR THE NEXT HALF MARATHON – Please contact Brenda, Sponsor Forms can be printed from Here!

 

Please help us to fundraise:

Please help us to faise funds for Peacemakers work in Kenya by obtaining sponsors for Jess Walker, who’s going to complete another Sponsored half marathon run on Sunday28th September in Windsor. It’s looks like a fantastic venue for the event, see for yourselves by clicking here. Jess Walker is running for Peacemakers and will be wearing the t-shirt shown below, so that people will recognise him amongst the other competitors.

Jess for action t-shirt front 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

A Sponsorship Form is available to download from here. Please try and help Jess raise as much money as possible for the Kenyan Porridge Mill Building Fund. A facility which will be open to use by the local cummunity in Runyenjes, Kenya, and one which will help the resource centre become self sustaining.