Wednesday, 3 August 2011

Laughter and smiles...everywhere

Paul Foulkes, from Fleetwood, Lancashire, visted the Happy House with is mum Sandra and dad Derek.
Sandra, who retired last year as headteacher of Singleton CE School, sponsors twins Sauma and Pendo and has helped so much with fundraising both whilst at Singleton and also at Fleetwood Rotary Club.
"Mum and dad visited the Happy House last year and were blown away by the project and just how well everything looked and we  booked a trip to Kenya for this year with the second week in Watamu at Sue and Dave's "local" Turtle Bay Beach Club.
Sue had been so keen for mum to visit as now a retired teacher she could meet with the teachers to offer as much support and advice as she could.
I had never been to the Happy House before, I'd heard all the stories, kept up to date on progress and enjoyed the charity night at the Sheraton.
But I had no idea really what to expect or how much had been achieved.
A tour of the Happy House shows just how much is involved in looking after a family of 50+ children on a daily basis - plus the teaching, social care, and horticulture (Dave!).
Classrooms, bedrooms, everything there is excellent, Sue has thought of everything that could possibly be needed now and in the future .
What struck me most after spending time with the children is not only how well they were looked after but how polite, kind and happy they were, the older children looking after the younger ones, like one big family.
When I looked round all I saw were smiles and all I heard was laughter, you could see the children are delighted to call the Happy House their home.
I am sure there are tears now and again but you can honestly see their joy. Personally for me, after hearing the stories and attending fundraising nights, it was an overwhelming feeling to visit and experience first hand just what has been achieved for the kids.
Once you have met them you realise that all the hard work by everyone involved is helping change lives.
Sue and Dave are a wonderful couple , making us feel more than welcome and could not do enough for us.  You cannot  put into words just how special they are but after meeting them you  understand just how they have achieved what they have - the Happy House is an extension of themselves warm, welcoming and determined.
They deserve all the credit they get in my book and I miss our visit immensely, it has certainly shown me that if you want something enough you can achieve anything.
If you ever doubt that, just visit the Happy House........
Paul's pictures show his mum Sandra with Sue  with Hope, Lily and Evans and the Rotary Club penant; his dad with our Harry looking over his shoulder; Paul playing with kids; Shakila, Rukia and Sifa modelling their beadwork done with Sandra and visiting Lytham students.