St.Paul's Street HIV/AIDS OrphanageClick here for an introduction to St. Paul's and Margaret Mbote, the woman who founded and runs the program.
The majority of the children at St. Paul's were brought there from Rongai, the nearby town. In Rongai, there are no schools, healthcare is non-existent, food consists of the findings in garbage dumps, and parents are absent - either dead of AIDS, in jail or simply "moved on." The result of this neglect is a town filled with street children, either begging for scraps, sitting or standing vacantly in the side streets. St. Paul's looks after upwards of 60 of these children, but there are hundreds more for which there's currently just no room at the orphanage. We've begun an outreach and rescue program for these kids so they can survive until we can arrange for a better future for them, either at St. Paul's as its facilities expand or elsewhere.
To do this, we have a modest feeding and healthcare program that enters the community to deliver food and, where possible, healthcare. One of the board members of St. Paul's is a physician and, with donated medical supplies, he joins us in this outreach. Until we can expand St. Paul's, there is little more we can do to help with this heartbreaking situation. Your contributions to this effort increase the number of children we can reach with food and healthcare so that they can survive until they can be rescued and placed in a safe and supportive environment.
Our St. Paul's initiative has been very rewarding. At this point all school age children are attending local schools (which requires books, school uniforms and a diet sufficient to support them through a school day and study program) and receiving regular healthcare. There are numerous stories of children who have been rescued from Rongai and are now thriving: here are two:
When we visited St. Paul's in 2008, baby Samuel had just been delivered there the day before. He had been discarded at birth and thrown in a trash heap where the police found him and brought him to St. Paul's. When Ardith (a former critical care nurse) saw him she immediately recognized that he needed urgent medical attention and we brought him to the local clinic where an examination revealed he had been strangled at birth before he was discarded. Quick medical attention, paid for by Covenant Children, Inc., resulted in a complete recovery. We learned on our 2009 visit in March that he has since been adopted by a loving family and is thriving.
Baby Samuel, one day old:
Baby Sarah was found by the river by Maasai women in 2008, discarded at birth. When the women found her, she was covered in red ants and screaming. Margaret brought her back to health, but she has never been able to walk. (Click here to view a video of Sarah) When we visited this year, we were able to have this bright, adorable old girl (now 18 months old) diagnosed and treated and, at last report, she is beginning to walk and a complete recovery is promised.
Since the orphanage needs capital improvements (like expanded, permanent dormitories, a kitchen, some arable land for farming), any additional money will be channeled there. There are three other orphanages in the area near St. Paul's, each with its own special needs. It is our goal to acquire enough land to consolidate the three orphanages under the St. Paul's roof, which will allow for an onsite clinic and primary school, initially serving upwards of 350 children. Our present capital improvement goal for building permanent dormitories, expanding the number of children the orphanage can accommodate, acquiring needed land and fencing to protect the children and the property is estimated at $125,000. Click on the link below to donate."