210 hours and counting!
As you know, schools have been closed in Kenya since mid-March. That is 7 months to date! With schools closed, it only provided closer proximity to those dangers we all worked so hard to keep the girls from in the very first place.
COVID-19 certainly challenged the community and all of the organizations within. At first, we had to find creative ways to remain connected to the girls and distribute food care bags, and we we did! We created specific reporting times, one every hour, to come pick up using a table to slide the bag across. We even worked with others to get it delivered to the door step of the girls while walking by (not stopping, but a quick "here, take this bag" and keep walking). As time continued to unfold to mid-May and June, we engaged the allowances of the KE MOH's small, masked, spaced allowance of no more than a few by providing tutoring. Our Shining Brighter University Scholar and our College Intern provided the tutoring on their best performed subjects each. While it does not replace school by any means, it lets the High School girls keep learning, it keeps them connected to Angaza and it gives them a safe and different space to be in at least for an hour or so a day. There were so many of these groups popping up throughout Kibera informally with school teachers or volunteers, even between buildings or in any space that could be found. As other communities across the nation were able to engage in online learning (which requires a computer, internet access, ability to have data, and.... electricity), it left our girls (and all kids) behind in Kibera.
Here we are in October, and still going! One set leaves and everything, including the chairs, is jik'd (bleached). The second set leaves, same process, it is a lot of work! On sunny days like today, we use our cement patio area which is always nice! To date, our Shining Brighter Scholar and the College Intern have been able to provide 210 hours of tutoring! While not every girl received the full 210 hours due to few at a time, The Angaza Project has provided 210 total to date and we are still going! We are committed to this until their return to school, which is expected in January. (There are some schools returning already now).
Do you want to know something else that makes our Shining Brighter Scholar so amazing? Some Colleges and Universities were still in session throughout COVID and just moved everything online. Our Scholar already had a computer issued to her as part of her Scholarship with us and the University was happy to give her the data so she was continuing her very own studies in our place before/after/in between tutoring these girls! Talk about commitment to learning and helping others to do the same! She NEVER gave up on her community! Did you know it gets even better? She was working on her final examinations for her Certificate level studies, passed, and GRADUATED her University Certificate for Social and Community Development in the midst of all of this! With that, her credit rolled into the Diploma so she is already in the next level! Stay tuned for our next blog post about her journey to date..... and the title is: "9.9 miles to graduation"- don't miss it!
Today, we felt like we got a bit lucky! As tutoring group one was exiting, tutoring group two was hanging around out by the steps and we took the opportunity for a photo (October 7, 2020)!
The girls are determined, serious, and committed to their education.
So is our Shining Brighter Scholar and our College Intern!
Thank you for being involved!