Saturday, 31 March 2012

Sporting stars

Star of the Week awards at Kidz Club this week  went to four promising soccer players.
Rose Chai, Evans Chengo, Samson Francis and Mariam Safari have all been chosen for the district level games .
They were all successful in the best football player section for scoring goals at zonal level. 
We are so proud of them.

Friday, 30 March 2012

Packed and ready to go!

Many thanks to Nicola Feay, Rob Marsh and seven-year-old Jamie for offering to  fill a suitcase with things we need to get out to the Happy House from the UK.
They are in Mariam's sponsor family and just can't wait to meet her. Jamie is jumping up and down with excitement at the prospect of playing with out kids.
The family, who live near Chorley, Lancashire, visited Watamu for the first time last year but didn't get a chance to visit the Happy House, but after seeing our publicity board in the Turtle Bay Hotel contacted Sue when they returned home and started sponsoring Mariam.
They have also helped to raise funds with a charity fun day at Nicola's mum's pub, the Oak Tree, Brinscall, raising £235.
We wish Nicola, Rob and Jamie a wonderful holiday ... our family is looking forward to seeing you!

Thursday, 29 March 2012

Graduation day for Sir

Seeing how hard work and commitment brings a good job and a cause for celebration really gives our kids something to aspire too.
Some of the older ones enjoyed an outing to the graduation ceremony and fete for Happy House teacher Mr Athman.
Uncle Billy says: ". It was a very successful trip which was a practical example for the kids on the need to work hard in pursuit of academic excellence."
Congratulations, Mr Athman.

Wednesday, 28 March 2012

Back again!

Our very good friends from Northern Ireland, Dawn Heather White and Judith Carson are back at the Happy House to help out for a month.
Dawn Heather, who sponsors Katana, and Judith (wearing floral top), who is in little Fred's sponsor family, do so much to help us all year round and its is a pleasure to welcome them back.
They also brought with them lots of goods for the children, as they have done on previous visits, and when not at the Happy House, Dawn Heather, from Bangor, works so hard raising funds.

Tuesday, 27 March 2012

Surprise for Samson

There was great excitement for Samson when two members of his sponsor family,Helen and Tony Hall,came to visit him at the Happy House.
Helen and Tony, on holiday from Darlington, County Durham, were thrilled to see Samson and his home for themselves and specially when he showed them his memory box containing all the keepsake letters and photos they have sent him.
Helen and Tony (pictured with Uncle Billy, Auntie Rose and Samson)  kindly brought along gifts of essentials for our family and a cash donation from friends.
Sponsoring a Happy House child brings so much pleasure to everyone concerned, plus it provides the vital income that is our underpinning. To find out more please email

Easter eggs-travaganza in Milan

Our friends in Italy Piera Lauria and her friend Elena are holding an Easter bazaar today at the kindgergarten in Milan attended by Piera's son Mattia.
They have been busy making pretty bags filled with Easter eggs and lollipops and are also encouraging children to draw their own Easter pictures - we look forward to seeing some photographs soon.
Good luck with your fundraiser, and thank you for caring about our family in the way that you do.


Monday, 26 March 2012

Campus capers at UCLAN

Social work student Jessika Poplawski is looking forward to volunteering at the Happy House this summer and is raising funds and awareness for our family at University of Central Lancashire, Preston.
Jessika, from Blackpool, gave a talk about the way Mama Sue and her Happy House are transforming children's lives to other students on her course.
And as Jessika's friends are keen to help her raise money some joined her, dressed in their eyecatching "onesies" as they toured the campus asking for donations in exchange for cakes and sweets.
Jessika (in black and white) and friends raised £232.82.
They have more fundraising in the pipeline for this week.
Well done girls, that's a fantastic result. Thank you.


Sunday, 25 March 2012


Our children in the Happy House school are getting a headstart in learning languages.
Multilingualism is common in Kenya, and by the time they are five most kids are speaking their own tribal language, plus swahili, and English which is used as the common language in Kenyan schools.
So there was an immediate  "oui" to adding French to the curriculum in the Happy House school from staff and pupils and even the youngest pupils are getting to grips with their first French words.
Thanks to a very generous donor, Mama Sue, whilst in the UK, was been able to buy French language teaching aids to give them a head start.

Saturday, 24 March 2012

New arrival

A new arrival at the Happy House is student Christina.
Christina, our first volunteer from Greece, has settled down in no time, impressed by the very high standard of childcare we are giving our kids, and is helping out in school.

Friday, 23 March 2012

Costume call

No need to go on safari to see a giraffe, they're right here at the Happy House.
Our kids are busy getting ready for a showtime based on animal stories and songs and each child will have their own animal to play.
This little trio are going to make just the cutest  giraffes in these costumes, all they need now is their masks... and they're on the way.

Thursday, 22 March 2012

Thank you for the music ...

Talented students at Lytham St Annes Technology and Performing Arts College put on a fantastic show and raised £1,210.83 for our Happy House family.
Thank you to Nathan Spacey, their Director of Music who, with students, has volunteered at the Happy House, and to everyone who took part for raising such a fantastic amount for our children.

Veggies galore

Beans, tomatoes, peppers, pumpkins .. veggies galore and straight from the garden to the kitchen!
So many of you have sent seeds and they are producing great results ensuring that our kids have plenty of fresh vegetables and fruit in their daily diet.
Fuelled with nourishing food the children who, in the past, have lived  every day with the ache of an empty stomach, are now healthy and energetic with strong bones and teeth, and glowing skin.
Seeds will always be needed if we are to achieve our aim of being self-sufficient so if you could send a few packets  every now and again we would be truly grateful.
The address is Sue Hayward's Happy House, PO Box 796, Watamu, Kenya, East Africa.


Wednesday, 21 March 2012

Thanks to you

Our Happy House birthday party and charity night on Friday raised an amazing £9,081 - all thanks to you.
Without your help and support such an amazing total would have been impossible.
To everyone who helped in any way at all, by collecting or donating prizes, by bringing along cheque donations (which have been included in the total), to those who helped in the run up to the evening and on the night and, of course, special thanks to Dr Steve Cushing and Sheila Davies for the moving audio visual presentation and to Adam Plummer of A.D.S Entertainments, Fleetwood, who volunteered his services as DJ for the evening.
Everyone agreed, Adam, that you were simply the best!
For Sue and Dave, who had come so far to be with us, the evening was all we hoped. A wonderful party with the bonus of raising such a huge amount of money, with a matched donation of £3,000 still to come. 
We have to keep our bank balance growing, so that our family and the Happy House can grow too. It costs so much to provide an excellence of childcare and education, but second best is not an option. We will give our children, who have suffered so much, the best so that they, too, can be the best that they can be.
Without you - your love ,support and money over so many years- where would the 58 children who have joined our family in the last two years have been now?
The answer is too dreadful to contemplate. 
Thank you from the bottom of our hearts.
You know every penny raised will be carefully spent.
*More pictures from Friday will be on our Happy House page on Facebook today,  Please send me ( your best pictures (small files please) so that we can share those too,
You will now find our photo album at  please feel free yo add to our album!

Tuesday, 20 March 2012

Inspiration, friend and Mama

First, and above all, Sue Hayward is Mama to her family of 58 Happy House kids.
To the rest of us she our friend and our inspiration.
It was fitting that the second birthday celebration at the Hotel Sheraton, Blackpool, should also provide an opportunity for Ruth Lloyd-Williams founder of Network She, a network of business women from the north of England and Wales, to present Sue with their Fundraiser of the Year Award, sponsored by CostCo.
Sue was unable to be at the awards ceremony in November but was absolutely delighted to hear that she had been chosen, and doubly delighted that Ruth came to our event to present it to her.
The sparkling glass trophy will join Sue's other cherished awards in her Happy House office.
As we know, life is not about awards or rewards for Sue. She is driven by the vulnerable, destitute, children she is helping. They are and will remain her focus.
Dr Steve Cushing, her former GP and a good friend and fundraiser, was able to capture, on camera, the essence of Sue's motivation and to draw a picture of the her work, whilst he and his wife Cherith were visiting the Happy House earlier this year.
Helped by Sheila Davies, a fellow member of Poulton-le-Fylde Photographic Society, they  have produced an emotional and telling audio visual presentation, Making a Difference: The Happy House and Esther's Story, which was shown for the first time on Friday.
You can watch it for yourself by following this link
Please shwo it to your friends and if you, or they, should you want to know more about how you can help please email me, in the UK,
*Sue is pictured with Ruth Lloyd-Williams, and also with Dr Steve Cushing and Sheila Davies.

Monday, 19 March 2012

Well on the way

Today's blog is returning to the Happy House (there are still more charity night pictures for tomorrow) because Mama Sue wants you to see how the primary school is progressing.
It is thanks to all those who support us that we have come so far in the two years since Mama achieved her dream of opening her Happy House doors to her very first children.
The primary school, being built as a self-contained unit on the roof space always earmarked for development, is growing apace as these pictures illustrate.

Sunday, 18 March 2012

Cheque-ing in!

Fantastic fundraisers added to the coffers of our charity night.
Furniture for Education, a Burnley based charity that has done so much to help equip and furnish the Happy House and school, brought along a cheque for £500.
Talented young vocalist Melissa "Missa" Miles presented Sue with £426 from the sales of her debut EP, and added to it by selling more copies , after impressing guests with her fantastic voice.
Lesley Pidcock added another £550, raised by asking for donations instead of gifts on her 50th birthday plus a candle party proceeds, and along presented £100 from her students at Doncaster College.
Another £235 was handed over by Nicola Feay raised at a fun day at her mum's pub, the Oak Tree, Brinscall.
Sue was absolutely thrilled to be able to say thank you personally to them and to everyone else who makes a difference to our children's lives by supporting her work

Saturday, 17 March 2012

Oh what a party

A wonderful night with so many friends made our second birthday celebration a huge success last night.
It is two years today since Sue opened her Happy House and in that time our family has grown to 58 children - 58 young lives saved from fear, hunger and poverty. 
Thanks to their Mama Sue they now have a chance in life, and opportunity to make a difference, just like she is doing every day of her life.
Our charity night at the Hotel Sheraton , Blackpool, was about more than raising money. It was also about bringing together, and thanking, everyone who supports the work we are doing.
We will have a final total later, but it looks like we will have raised well over £7,000, plus a £3,000 matched donation.
It was a long night, so today's blog contains just a few pictures. But we will post more over the next couple of days.
If you have any pictures you would like to share you can post them on our Happy House, Watamu, Facebook page or email to me - as small files please.
Thank you to everyone who came along or supported us in any way, and to the Hotel Sheraton for making us so welcome.

Friday, 16 March 2012

The party's here!

Ready to party.  Balloons, birthday banners, sparkles and prizes galore ... we are all ready for a fun night out at the Happy House Charity Night and 2nd Birthday Party.
It's going to be a wonderful night, raising lots of money for our wonderful kids.
A huge thank you to everyone who has helped or supported is in any way.

Class act at Devonshire School

Sue and Elizabeth continued their Happy House double act when they were guests of the school council at Devonshire School, Blackpool.
The council members, all children, wanted to know all about what's happening at the Happy House and the progress being made by two year old Brian, who they have been sponsoring since he joined our family as a newborn, abandoned in hospital.
It was a really lovely interlude in a busy day. The youngsters had so many questions for us to answer and were fascinated by stories of the Happy House and our kids. 
The expression on their faces,  as they listened to us speak, illustrated the depth of their feeling. As children themselves they can put themselves in the shoes of our children and try, as much as they can, to identify with the tragic circumstances they have come from.
We so value the love and support of Devonshire School. They have a colourful display all about the Happy House and a file for parents and visitors to look at.
They are a wonderful extended family for Brian (Sue is pictured with headboy Jake and a picture of Brian).
Thank you to everyone for making us so welcome!
Today is the day
All set to party? We certainly hope so. Tonight  at 7pm the Happy House Charity Night and 2nd Birthday Party gets underway at the Hotel Sheraton, Blackpool, and we are aiming to raise a mega amount of money for our amazing family.
We have wonderful prizes to win, great auction lots, plus lots of fun, games and food (including cake!).
So put on your party shoes and get ready to have fun, fun, fun!
If you want a ticket we have just a few left so ring Elizabeth on 07905 130 589.They are £15 each.

Thursday, 15 March 2012


I have received a few last minute cancellations on tickets which had been pre-booked but not paid  for tomorrow's charity night and birthday party at Blackpool's Hotel Sheraton. £15 inc buffet. It's going to be fab night with wonderful prizes, so please let me know IN ADVANCE if you would like me to save any of these tickets for you - email or phone 07905 130 589 We'd love to see you. It is ticket only. 

Rotary visit

Hospitality, friendship and community service, the hallmarks of Rotary clubs the world over, were on display at Fleetwood last night.
Sue and Elizabeth,  enjoying a rare chance to speak about the Happy House as a double act, told members Sue's story and the road that led her to build her wonderful children's home.
Sue and Elizabeth also mentioned how well they work together, despite the 4000 miles between them, and how often they will, coincidentally, be emailing each other, at the same time, about the same issue.
And as if to prove the point when Elizabeth was asked to draw the raffle, Sue picked up her ticket and joked "It's 409 you want!".
And guess what? That's just what she got!
Thank you to Carole and everyone in Fleetwood Rotary for being a lovely audience and such friendly hosts.
Charity night
Only one day left to our second birthday party and charity night at Blackpool's Hotel Sheraton - there's a bumper bundle of prizes up for grabs for the raffle, tombola and bottlebola. Plus we have some pay-to-enter games to bump up our takings and to make the evening fun.
Most things will be £1 so make sure bring along plenty of £1 coins (although Moneybags Mavis will be manning a coin exchange).
We will also have a £5 raffle (limited to two tickets per person) to win  two weeks accommodation only in a bungalow at Savannah Restaurant in Watamu - just a short tuktuk ride from the Happy House.
This prize has been kindly donated by restaurant owners  Mike and Jackie.
And in a mini auction there will be two top priced tickets for Barry Manilow at the Manchester Arena  (inc access of the VIP lounge, champagne on arrival and VIP parking); four top priced tickets to Coronation Street the Musical at the Manchester Arena and a beautiful screen print of a Flamingo by Robin Ross.
It's going to be a fun night, Happy house style, but as well as having fun we have to raise as much money as we can to support our wonderful Happy House family and to give our kids there the future they deserve.
Look forward to seeing up!
*It is a ticket-only event and I have just two tickets left, £15 each including buffet. If you would like one call me on 07905 130 589 or email

Wednesday, 14 March 2012

Sue on air

It was a pleasure to meet up with Paul Breeze and Lucy London of Paul&Lucy's Best kept Secrets  who interviewed Sue for their show on Preston FM on Friday evening.
They chatted to her, and Elizabeth, about the work of the Happy House and the way it has grown in the two years since it opened.
Sue spoke with great love and affection for the family she has created and the interview will make fascinating listening when it is aired on 103.2 Preston FM on Friday evening at 7pm (listen live worldwide via the internet at and after broadcast it will be posted on so you can listen again on demand.
Paul and Lucy, who will be at our charity night on Friday,very kindly brought along a selection of prizes to help us with our fundraiser. Many thanks to them both.

Tuesday, 13 March 2012

Warm welcome

After the soaring temperatures of Kenya, Mama Sue might be finding Blackpool in March a bit chilly, but it was more than offset by the warm welcome she received at the resort's Grange Park Open Door Project.
The generous community group kindly sponsors eight-year-old Rose, with members each paying a weekly contribution.
Sue has visited the group on a number of occasions to speak about her children and her charity, and was sad to hear that this time would be her the last time there with the Rev Judith Wray, who will be moving to Leicester in the summer.
But Judith, who has been a great support, will stay in contact with Sue and the charity as will the Open Door Project.
Sue says:"I always love going to Open Door. It has such a warm and friendly atmosphere
"I know they will miss Judith and wish her every happiness - I know we will stay in touch."
Sue, accompanied by  Elizabeth Gomm, talked about Rose, the family, and the school.
It was a lovely morning. Thank you everyone at Open Door.
Seeds wanted 
Sue has added to her wish list for anyone wanting to bring something along to the charity night on Friday for our family.
As you know we are trying to become self-sufficient in fruit and veg, and that means we need lots of seeds.
Cabbage, pumpkins, green beans, sweet melons, tomatoes, cucumbers etc are among the crops we have already tried with success.

Monday, 12 March 2012

Family thanks Jon Gomm

A big thank you to musician Jon Gomm for sharing his talent with our family.
Jon is generously giving a percentage of the money from his pay-what-you-want download singles Passionflower and Message in a Bottle to the Happy House.
And to date that amounts to a fantastic £512.17 for our family
And his mum, Elizabeth, a trustee and voluntary UK coordinator of the charity and her good friend and fellow volunteer Lynn McCluskey presented Jon with a thank-you certificate from Mama Sue and our 58 kids when he was playing his final free-entry pub gig, to a rammed Prince Arthur, Lord Street, Fleetwood.
His Passionflower has zoomed past 1.5million views on Youtube - thanks to the likes of serial-tweeter Stephen Fry and sharing website Reddit. With repostings it has reached well over two million!
After 10 years on the road, gigging with his beautiful but battered Lowden guitar, Wilma, and achieving cult status among his thousands of fans, Jon is achieving the acclaim he deserves with offers flooding in from around the world.
He starts a tour of  Belgium and Holland this week,followed by tours of Australia, Germany, Poland and Portugal and a national UK Guitar Masters tours  with fellow guitar legends Andy McKee and Preston Reed in the autumn.
Find out more at
Mama's in town
It's lovely to have Mama in town.  Today she's visiting Grange Park Open Door Project, Blackpool, who are so looking forward to seeing her and catching up on all the Happy House news. 
And, yes kids, we ARE looking after her and your Mama sends you all a great big hug!
We'll be following her week right here on the blog.

Sunday, 11 March 2012

Birthday gifts

This week's Happy House birthdays celebrated with a  birthday song and gifts at Kidz Club put Hassan  and Pendo Francis in the spotlight ?
Happy birthday kids.
Welcome back!
Mama Sue and Papa Dave are safely back in the UK and have a busy week ahead culminating with the Charity Night and Birthday Party on Friday at the Hotel Sheraton, Blackpool.
We will look after them kids, we know they miss you, and they'll be back home with you in no time at all.
*Three tickets have become available for the charity night. They are £15 each.If you would like to snap up one or all of them please email or call me on 07905 130 589. 

Saturday, 10 March 2012

Mama don't go ...

There was an emotional farewell from the kids for their much-loved Mama Sue when she left the Happy House to head for a nine day break in the UK and our charity night and second birthday party in Blackpool.
Children and staff gathered in the reception to surprising Mama with her favourite songs... especially Running Over.
They had made her wonderful card wishing her a safe journey and wishing her a speedy return. They so miss her and Papa Dave when they are away, even if only for a day or two!
Rose said: "It was so upsetting when the kids came running into the office singing Running Over ... they made me cry too!"
For the next few days their loss is our gain. It will be wonderful to have Sue and Dave here again and so many of our friends are looking forward to seeing them again or meeting them for the first time.
Welcome home Mama and Papa.