Tuesday, 6 December 2011
Our teachers split their holidays so that some are working and helping with organised activities, but most of the time the children have freedom of the grounds to roam, play and to embark on their own little voyages of discovery.
Friday's party was wonderful in every way, and a real testimony to team work, everyone had been involved in getting ready for it, including the children, and everyone enjoyed the fun. You may wonder why parties and treats are so important. It's because parties and special treats help our children to exorcise the ghosts of the past which could so easily haunt them. All have come from or been through traumatic situations and are psycologically fragile.
We are giving them a happy childhood, which includes occasional parties and treats,to enjoy now and which they will look back on and remember with equal happiness throughout their lives, not blotting out their past but easing the pain that it could cause.
Treats are also a reward for good behaviour.
Discipline in a family of 55 children is always a tough card to play. In Kenya, children are often punished with beatings but that is not our way, and never will be.
When a child is naughty, Uncle Billy or Mama Sue will reprimand them, explaining why their actions are not acceptable and how they may hurt or impact on their brothers and sisters. If a child continues to behave badly they are warned that they will be excluded from the next family outing or treat. It has happend on several occasions so has become a real deterrent.
Some of our boys missed the trip to the airport because they had failed to buck up their ideas and carried on being naughty. They didn't miss Friday's party, nor did any others.
They knew that if they behaved badly, and beyond what is just natural childish mischief, that they would miss out.
It is a postitive and effective way of putting across to the family their duty respect their home, their family and themselves.