Tuesday, 24 June 2014

Mama's dream ... or was it a vision?

Today, Mama Sue writes about a very personal experience:
When I was diagnosed with breast cancer in March 2012, it was devastating. We had gone to the UK for 10 days and had to stay for 18 months.
During that time I also needed two operations for a hip replacement.
My Dave was brilliant, he cuddled me when I cried, made me laugh and just loved me through it all.
When the hip replacement I had  done in Mombasa, in July 2010, collapsed the pain was horrendous.
I was in hospital for nine weeks waiting for the excellent orthopaedic team to decide what was the best way forward.
I missed my children so much, I ached inside to see them.
We used to Skype and email but nothing compares to a little hand slipping into yours, as you look down there is a lovely little person with their eyes full of love, or when I can rub a bumped knee better or say’ Where is Mama’s kiss today?’ Little arms go around my neck and a kiss is planted firmly on Mama’s cheek.
I used to sit in the chair next to my bed in the hospital and let my mind wander to the Happy House. Imagine myself walking around, especially at night when all the children were fast asleep. 
One afternoon, my thoughts wandered to Happy House but I was stood outside the gate to the acre of land we have bought with funds raised by Charlotte Poulter and Saskia Flower at Harrodian School in readiness for our Secondary School to be built.
As I stood at the junction of two lanes, behind me was the way I had walked, in front of me led to some houses owned by Italians, to my left were the gates into the land and on my right the lane led down to the Happy House, just five minutes walk away.
 I was aware of a man just behind me to my right, I knew he was shorter than me  and was wearing a black coat, but I never turned to look at him.
 As I looked down the lane to my right there was a lot of boys aged around 7 to 10 years all playing in the hedge bottoms. I asked the man who are these children, why are they here? He replied,’ They are waiting’ For what? I asked: ‘For you’ he said. 
I turned to my left and pushed the gate open and stepped in. There is a base that has been built in readiness for the new school, on the this base sat older boys, 14 -18 years old. They were playing draughts and talking to each other quietly in groups. I just looked at all these young people, I felt overwhelmed.
 I did not speak to the man again.
When Dave and I finally came home to our family I knew I had so much more to do with regard to educating children.
But what and how ? I knew it would come to me and it did. 
Our free scholarship scheme that I have named after my very caring oncologist Dr Danwata, was born.  At present we have 20 children on the scheme, great kids who appreciate this opportunity in life and are working so hard to make us proud of them, and we are.
 I desperately want to extend this scheme but as always it comes down to finances. 
As trouble has erupted in Kenya with increased threats of terrorism, tour operators have cancelled flights from the UK and visitors from UK, Australia, USA and France, have been put off coming to visit because of advice from their Governments. British tour operators say it will be the end of October at least before they consider resuming flights.
That time is so far away for people who have nothing, with no tourists many are out of work all across Kenya 
Our own situation is no visitors or volunteers to bring us so many of the much needed items, shoes, socks, knickers, Pampers, toothpaste, our list of consumables is endless with a family of 84. 
More children will be abandoned and neglected as desperate parents don’t know which way to turn. The Happy House will be needed more than ever, as a safe haven for little people. 
There is an abandoned baby boy now in Malindi Hospital ready for us to bring home as soon as he is well. He was found in some woodland. 
So it starts.
So much to do, SO MUCH.