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The Favorite Book Project

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The Favorite Book Project

In August 2008, I was privileged to move to the United States for college.  Obviously, God made it possible via Greg Gidman (former college soccer coach) who facilitated my studying in the US on a soccer scholarship.  Since God is never short of blessings, I joined Graduate School and will graduate in 6 months with an MBA in Management. 

Education is a gift that keeps on giving, and I want to honor that.  However, I can only do so much by myself. Great and wonderful things happen when people team up.  Additionally, success earned by a team is more joyous than an individual one.  I have a new challenge for you and me. 

The Need:

In December 2012, I visited home (Kenya) to see family and friends.  My compassionate Aunt introduced me to a Children Care Center in our neighborhood.  She suggested I do something for them if I could.  Most of these boys and girls lost their parents and relatives in 2007 post-election tribal clashes in Kenya.   

After the 2007 general election results were announced, some people were displeased and riots erupted.  The entire country was tense, especially in the outskirts of the capital city.  I recall praying every night before bed, and ensuring that I had a weapon underneath my bed just in case an intruder showed up.  Allegedly, more than 1000 lives were lost around the country and more than 100,000 people displaced from their homes.  That’s how most of the kids at the care center lost their loved ones. 

Ann King’ori, a very compassionate woman took the kids in and continues to nurture them the best she can. With the help of a few local donors, she provides food, clothing and shelter for them.  She also pays utility bills and provides them with school stationery.  It becomes extremely tough for Ann, when the kids fall ill and she doesn’t have health insurance for each one of them, so she uses her savings to cater for their health needs.  Despite her amazing selflessness, it’s a taxing ordeal to nurture these kids and her biological ones too. 

By the way, she doesn’t like calling them orphans.  She finds the term degrading and makes them feel less appreciated.  She is their parent, so they are not orphans!

During my visit at the care center, I gave away items that a few generous friends and I had collected in the US. We donated 60 shirts, socks and soccer balls (pre-owed but in good condition).  The children embraced our generosity and could not hide their joy. See the pictures on ‘The Favorite Book’ Facebook Page.    

Education is the most valuable asset you can give to anyone, especially a child who clings onto slim hope daily.  These kids need to successfully learn, and redefine their future.  However, the education system in Kenya is quite demanding and schools have inadequate learning resources. 

I attended primary and high school (Elementary-Middle school) in Kenya, and I know the struggles endured.  Sometimes dropping out seems inevitable. Frustration from lack of fees and inadequate textbooks caused some of my friends to drop out of school hence struggled to make it through hardships in life. 

On a recent phone call with Ann, the care center has added 10 more kids hence 70 in total. She has 39 boys and 31 girls.  51 kids are in primary school, 18 in secondary school and 1 in university. She is working diligently to promote their learning, but falling short in some areas. 

Currently exercise books (books for taking notes) are the main challenge.  Most schools do not have computers, so students write until their notebooks, pens, erasers and pencils run out of space or dry.  Some of the kids’ uniforms are tattered and teachers won’t allow them back to school without new ones, so Ann has to buy them new uniforms for 2015 school year. 

It’s great that Ann feeds and clothes them, but promoting their education is the best thing she does for them.  If they successfully learn and achieve their ambitions, they will be able to give back to their home (care center).  Looking after home is the way of life in Kenya (Africa)!


I know with our generous hearts we can provide textbooks, notebooks, new uniforms, pens, pencils, erasers, fees and many more, but let’s start by promoting their PASSION and gradually do more later. 

Each kid has a FAVORITE subject, and it would be appropriate to promote what they enjoy learning at school.  Their favorite subjects are based on their future ambitions and we should invigorate their passion hence solidify their foundation for achieving their future goals.  

I am sure we can raise more than $1000, but with just that amount, it would be enough to buy each kid a textbook for his or her favorite subject, and also more other stationery. 

US Dollar vs Kenya Shilling

$1= KSHS 89 (Kenyan Currency; Exchange rate on 10.26.2014) *Subject to fluctuation. 

70 Textbooks (1 per kid) x $6.7 each =$469.00
420 Notebooks (6 per kid) $0.56 each =$235.20 
210 Pens (3 per kid) $0.22 each = $46.20
210 Pencils (3 per kid) $0.11 =$23.10
140 Erasers (2 per kid) 0.05 = $7.00
Others (Ann to decide) $219.50

Total funds=$1,000

Super Moms-Kenyan Connection

1.      My Dear Mother, my only nuclear family.  She is grateful that I am educated and acknowledges that if someone was not generous to us; my future would not be as promising. 

2.      Ann, the Care center’s Mother.  She wants the best for her 70 kids and willing to work with anyone who wants to help redefine their future. 

What’s in it for the donor?

1.      A Customized Thank You Note “Education Philanthropist.”
2.      The Joy of Giving-“More blessing to those who give than receive.”
3.      Updates on every major step
4.      Pictures and videos of every major step; Posted on ‘The Favorite Book’ Facebook page

 “We can do all things through Christ who gives us strength.”  Philippians 4:13



Hesbon Hezzy
Arlington Heights, IL

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