Voices from 8th Grade – Class of 2021

Recently our 8th graders finished their exams, meaning that they are done with 8th grade and will move onto high school in January. We are spotlighting these students, who are the highest performing class we’ve had yet!

In Kenya, even public high school has a tuition. The better high schools tend to have higher tuitions, and students are placed in a high school by their exam scores. These students are bright and promising. Read about them below. High school classes are the most in need of sponsorship because their education is more expensive. If you’d like to sponsor their class during their high school years visit the Sponsor Students page. 

 

Sime Willyster Akoth

I have been at LightHouse Academy for six years. I like being a student at LightHouse Academy because of the good performance. I like playing football [soccer] and singing. When I reach college, I would like the course of a nurse. When I grow up I would like to help our community by building more schools and helping the orphans.

-Sime Willyster Akoth, 14 years old

 

 

Teddy Joshua Alando

I have been at LightHouse Academy for two years…and by God’s grace – wishing it to be the last year. [Because he will graduate.] As a student at LightHouse, I really like much about my school: my good friends, our beloved “Mums” here for us, our studies, our teachers, only to mention a few. My hobbies are reading magazines, drumming and playing music. About courses, I would like to take “journalism”, if possible! For my community, I would first find a way on how to help them live a deep life in a way of not spending a lot of money on buying things that “we can make ourselves”. For example, the planting of trees as a result of using them in building up schools; we must create an awareness on the importance of replacing a traditional way of making charcoal by not cutting or bringing down the trees. By all these, this will leave my community not having to live a life of losing just to have.

-Teddy Joshua Alando, 17 years old

 

Opere James Oahiambo

I have been at LightHouse Academy for four years. I liked becoming a student at LightHouse because the performance was good and students were disciplined. My hobby is playing soccer. I would like the course of piloting in college. I am planning to help the community by building schools for the orphans and starting some projects which could help the community to grow economically.

-Opere James Oahiambo, 14 years old

 

Scholar Achieng

 

I have been in LightHouse Academy for four years. Being a student at LightHouse has made me benefit much in my primary education and it has made me and other pupils to have good performance. I like swimming in the river during my free time. I would like to take of journalism in my college level. I am about to start a Youth Group in the community that can help them to earn their living standard.

-Scholar Achieng, 16 years old

 

Effie Adhiambo

 

 

I like being a student at LightHouse because of the good meals they provide, the good performance they have and the quality teachers they have. I like swimming as my hobby and I would like to take journalism courses in college. After completing college, I would build hospitals and start some projects that would help my community.

– Effie Adhiambo, 15 years old

 

 

 

Tonny Austine

I have been at LightHouse Academy for four years. I like being a student at LightHouse Academy for the better and good teachers who are employed. I am a boy talented in football [soccer] and dancing. I plan to have a course of becoming a doctor when I grow up. I plan to help the community after my education by building more schools for the orphans and health services for those who are sick.

-Tonny Austine, 14 years old

 

 

Linda Akoth

I have been at LightHouse for ten years. In LightHouse, what I like is how we are being aught and how we do play during physical education. My hobby is playing in football [soccer] matches. I like it very much. When I finish my secondary education, I would like to be a doctor in the future. If I finish college, I would like to help my community by building a hospital for them to have better treatment.

-Odera Linda Akoth, 13 years old

 

 

Siwo Abigael Aluoch

I like dancing and reading storybooks. I’ve been at LightHouse Academy for four years. I like being at LightHouse Academy because of the good performance in the school. I would like to train in nursing in college. When I grow up, I would like to help my community by planting trees and building hospitals.

-Siwo Abigael Aluoch, age 15

 

 

Anna Adhiambo

I have been at LightHouse Academy for 8 years; I like being at LightHouse because of good performance and proper hygiene. My hobby is reading storybooks, dancing and playing volleyball. If I finish college, I want to be a lawyer in the future. After finishing all that, I would like to help my community by building schools for orphans and needy people.

 

– Anna Adhiambo, 13 years old

 

 

Lovintronner Akoth

 

I have been at LightHouse for 6 years. I like better teaching and good performance at LightHouse. I like playing soccer and I would like to be a pilot in the future. I would like to build schools for the orphans and provide basic needs for the widows in my community.

 

-Lovintronner Akoth, 14 years old

 

 

 

Mary Patience Akinyi

I have been in LightHouse for 9 years. What I like in LightHouse is proper hygiene, proper teaching, and a balanced diet. My hobby is listening to music and reading storybooks. I would like to be an actress. I would like to help the community by distributing basic needs to the needy and the poor, and organizing an orphanage school and children’s home.

-Mary Patience Akinyi, age 14

 

 

Ann Ogutu

 

I am Ogutu Ann Akinyi. I am a Kenyan aged 17 years old. I have been at lighthouse for 6 years. I like the good performance of Lighthouse and how the cooks are humble to me. During my leisure time, I like visiting the needy and playing football [soccer]. When I grow up, I would like to be a teacher. I plan to help my community by building schools for them.

-Ann Ogutu, 17 years old

 

Kevin Onyango

I have been at LightHouse for 7 years. I like my teachers and pupils. Ialso like our cooks and workers for they are obedient and gave me advice when I got onto a wrong path. My hobby is playing soccer and reading storybooks. I would like to do the course of piloting in college. I am planning to help the community by respecting my elders and therefore showing a good example.

-Kevin Onyango, age 14

 

James Onyango

 

I have been at LightHouse for four years. I like our teachers, our school, our breakfast, our lunch, the school manager, our performance and all the subjects that we’re being taught. My hobby is playing football [soccer]. I would like to do a doctor course in college. I plan to help the community by respecting the elders and doing things that may lead to development in my community.

-James Onyango, age 14

 

Collins Odukah

 

 

I’ve been at LightHouse for 10 years.I like the performance of students of LightHouse and the teaching of their teachers. I like playing football [soccer] as my hobby and I would like to do a course for a game warden. When I finish my course I will build an orphanage at my community and some project that could help the community to grow economically.

-Collins Odukah, age 17

 

Jacklyne Akinyi

 

 

I have been at LightHouse Academy for four years. I like how they teach, also how they cook. We always eat a balanced diet at school daily. My hobby is playing football [soccer] and reading novels. I always spend my leisure time playing football [soccer] and reading storybooks. If I finish my school, I will help the community by helping the needy, contributing food to the orphans and building the nation. I would like to be a pilot. I will go to Aviation College.

-Jacklyne Akinyi, age 15

 

 

Esther Akoth

I have been at LightHouse for 6 years. What I like about being a student at LightHouse, is how the teachers are teaching and the pupils are performing. My hobby is playing football [soccer] and farming. The course I would like in college is nursing. I plan to help the community by building a school for orphans and helping the needy.

-Esther Akoth, age 17

 

 

Irine Opudo

I have been in LightHouse for 9 years. I like being a student at LightHouse Academy because of the good performance in the school. I like reading novels. I would like to be a banker in the future. I am planning to help my community by building a school and a hospital in the community.

-Irene Opudo, age 14

 

 

 

Mercy Achieng

 

 

I have been at LightHouse Academy for 4 years and I like the teaching and good performance of LightHouse. I like singing as my hobby. I would like to do nursing as my course and I am planning to help the community by building water projects for the people to have clean water for drinking

-Mercy Achieng, age 17

Investing in Leadership Through Water

Kenya is in a historic drought. Many continue to lose crops and animals due to the poor rainfall. In Alendu, some families pay 50 shillings for 10 gallons of water. People with motorbikes ride to a water source, retrieve water, and bring it back to sell door to door. The water they sell for such a high rate is brown and muddy, but people rely on it.

To Americans, it might seem a simple thing to say, “Then we must drill them a well for clean water!” And that well is currently being prepared. But this decision was far from simple, and it continues to face challenges.

One challenge surfaced in the first community meeting held to explain the plan and pricing for water access:

Community buy-in is critical because without it, the well will not succeed, despite the need for clean water.

Often in the community, people have misconceptions that as a non-profit, Rafiki Africa should be giving the community water for free. In these community meetings, Dorothy and Roger re-affirm Rafiki’s place as a community supporter, not a charity for the village to become dependent upon. Instead, Rafiki Africa will issue membership cards for the water supply.

Drilling for the well

The well will have six water access points: four will be accessible by community members who use membership cards to purchase water for about two to five shillings per ten gallons. This water is chlorinated and filtered, and the shillings will go to maintaining the well and water system.

Still, a two hour meeting became a five hour discussion.

But, when Dorothy recounts the challenges of the community meetings, she also talks about the students’ involvement. In their involvement, she can see the future of the village becoming stronger.

A few students attended the meetings to learn how their community were talking about this major issue. Then, they brought the conversation back to the school for their classmates to discuss. Drought is a big problem in their little community, and they want to figure out how they – the students -can let the world know what is happening in their village.

Community leaders and teachers also encourage students to bring the conversation to their homes. We already see evidence of this happening: a principal from another school came to talk to Dorothy about it. He heard about the program through his cousin’s son – a student at LightHouse Academy. This principal’s school cannot hold classes in the afternoon as students need to travel to a water source and retrieve cooking water for the next day.

This conversation, this discussion about community problems as a school group, is one of the greatest byproducts of building a well.

The LightHouse Academy and Rafiki Africa’s mission is rooted in investing in the students, including teaching them how to think about, discuss, and make decisions about challenges that face their communities. They are the community’s future. They will make these kinds of decisions for their community in the future.

Water Mission International anticipates it will take two months for the community to understand the sustainable water and well model. We pray that it won’t take as long. We also pray that we can raise the final $16,000 that is still needed for the well.

If you are interested in investing in this clean water and community project, please visit our water page.

UPDATE: The well is funded, however do feel free to donate toward clean water in Alendu. Maintenance and  training locals are still program costs.