Volunteering in African Orphanage

Belonging. Such a warm and cozy word. A word that has served as a very relevant theme in my life lately. I work for Airbnb, a company trying to create a world where you can belong anywhere. I found a church that believes that even if you don’t agree with us, you can still be with us. And even if you don’t believe, you can belong.


I have an amazing opportunity to take this theme with me and spread it to an amazing orphanage in Africa. The BELWOP Rescue Center , in Nyeri County, Kenya serves as a home for orphaned, neglected and abused children. Veronica Mumbi founded the organization with hopes to give the children in this county, a place to belong. Many of the children that come to BELWOP have no formal identification. No birth certificate. Sometimes, not even a recorded name. BELWOP believes that these children can still have an identity, a future, and a place to belong.

My church, Canvas SF, has partnered with BELWOP for over 6 years. Some of their previous trips included building the shelter the children sleep in, helping in the classroom, painting walls, creating games, cooking meals, anything that they need-- we go with ready and willing hands to help. The last trip Canvas was even able to buy new mattresses for all of the children.

My ask: join me in being a part of helping make these children’s home be a place they feel like they will always belong. Aside from the rescue center, they have independent projects that help these children grow up to be sustainable and successful on their own. Literally-- changing the future. If you have even just $5 to donate, I promise I will bring your giving heart with me and pour it into these kids, into Veronica and her staff, and into this place of belonging.

I am beyond excited, humbled, and passionate about this opportunity, and could use your help to see it come to fruition.

Thank you for taking the time to read this, I appreciate you.

❤️ Lydia

Watch the short documentary here:


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Lydia Marie Cruz 
San Francisco, CA
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