Wednesday, 30 April 2014

School report: Teachers get ahead

The new term starts next week, so it is a busy time for our teachers as Madam Rose reports:
As it is the last week of the holidays, teachers are busy preparing the records of work for each class.
These records include schemes of work showing a detailed plan of lessons to be taught and dividing the topics to be covered to ensure that the syllabus is completed in the required time.
The teachers also have time in the computer room to hone their computer skills and to learn new applications. 
This is so important as PC Roms we have covering maths, English and science require teachers to know how to use a computer properly, so Mr Omoi, our computer teacher, is giving us lessons.
 Pictures: above, Madam Rose at work with Mr Omoi giving assistance in the background..
Above right:Class 1 teacher Madam Maggy,  Class 2 teacher Madam Tanui, Class 3 teacher Madam Russel, Class 7 teacher Mr Isaac and Class 6 teacher Madam Milka.

Tuesday, 29 April 2014

Mama honours her inspirational doctor

Our first Dr Danwata Scholars with Mama and Papa
 Mama is honouring the specialist who treated her by giving his name our  Happy House scholarship scheme to educate impoverished young people.
Nigerian-born oncologist, Dr Falalu Danwata gave Mama hope and focus during 18 months breast cancer treatment in Blackpool,  which meant prolonged separations from the home and family she loves
“Dr Danwata was so kind, positive and supportive of me during my treatment. He told me to focus forward, that I was an individual and every person was different. I took his advice, acknowledged the fact I would be away from my children for 18 months, and generally accepted my life as it was at that time.
“Due to his support and advice neither Papa nor I ever doubted that I would be well again.
“I can never thank him enough, or those people who educated him and made him into the person he is,  a highly qualified, caring, special man.’
Dr Danwata
A plaque to dedicate the scholarship scheme to Dr Danwata now hangs alongside his photograph in our school.
Since making a full recovery and returning to the Happy House, Mama has taken her Happy House forward and her family has grown to 82.
She had a strong feeling there was something more she had to do, by helping more children who desperately needed the ‘gift’ of an education.
She heard about some children who are very bright but unable to access any education due to poverty.  Education is supposed to be free in Government schools that have 70-80 children per class but parents must pay for uniform, shoes, and books and is often beyond their means and their kids can’t go to school.
It was decided to take the 20 in most need into primary classes six and seven on free scholarships.  This includes uniforms and shoes, as many were barefoot, PE kit, exercise and text books, plus a main meal and snacks every day. 
“We are confident that through our website and daily blog we will secure sponsors for the education of these children who, otherwise, had no chance of achieving their dreams of being doctors, engineers or teachers.”
Sue is honouring her doctor, who came from humble circumstances himself, by calling the scheme, the Dr Danwata Scholarship.
He once told Sue that education is the most precious gift to any child, something that nobody could ever take away from them. 
Mama and Papa with Derrick, whose ambition is to be a
 lawyer and Diana who longs to be a doctor.
Dr Danwata grew up in a Nigerian village. His family their friends and relations realized he was a very bright child. They all made financial contributions towards his education in a local primary school before attending a Government boarding school.
“He once told me education was the most precious gift to any child, something that nobody could ever take away.  We know that he will be an inspiration to all our students and to all our family,” she said.
Dr Danwata grew in a Nigerian village. His family, their friends and relatives realised he was a bright child and all made financial contributions to his education in a local primary school before attending a Government boarding school.
He graduated in medicine and science from Ahmadu Bello University, followed by pre-registration junior medical practice at the University’s teaching hospital. He came to the UK on a World Health Organisation Scholarship for further training   at the Christie Hospital, Manchester in 1996, where he spent four years.
He has been at Rosemere Cancer Trust, Preston since 2000 and Associate Specialist in Clinical Oncology at the Centre since 2008 and works at Blackpool Victoria Hospital as the peripheral clinic. His specialist areas of interest and work are in Breast Cancer, Colorectal Cancer and Genitourinary cancers.
 He is delighted to be giving his name to the Happy House School’s Dr Danwata Scholarship Scheme
“I treated Sue at the Blackpool Victoria Hospital and the Rosemere Cancer Centre. She is an inspiring and remarkably generous charity worker.
“Following completion of her treatment, I was surprised to hear that Sue and her charity have decided to honour me with naming a scholarship scheme for disadvantaged children in Kenya after me. “It is an honour and privilege for me and I have  gladly accepted.  I'm quite happy to associate myself to this noble cause which will hopefully enable many children to achieve their full potential.”
If you would like to help by sponsoring the education of a Dr Danwata Scholar it costs £25 each month or £300 annually. Please email for more details.

Monday, 28 April 2014

Bike ride to romance

Organising an epic charity bike ride for the Happy House has put Chris O’Hare on the road to romance.
Chris was out training for Wheelers for Watamu Coast to Coast Cycle Ride, when he was stopped in his tracks by cycling enthusiast, Gabriella Gratrix.
“We had both gone to meet up with a lot of others to go for a long ride, got talking about the Coast to Coast and it started from there. We have been seeing each other ever since,” said Chris.
 They are such an item that Gabriella has signed up for the one-day  150 mile marathon cycle ride from Whitby to Blackpool , along with 30 members and friends of Poulton Wheelers, on June 14.
Gabriella will  also joining Chris and his son Jacob,14, when they go out to the Happy House to volunteer this summer.
Chris, said: “When I started planning the Coast to Coast, I was feeling a bit down my luck and thought it would give me the strength I need to get my life back on track, as well as helping other people much less fortunate than me. I never imagined I’d meet such a wonderful woman and be having so much fun!
 “Now we are out training together in all weathers.  Coast to coast in a day is a real challenge as you have to cycle through the Pennines so we are doing lots of hill training.”
 Dancer and costume maker, Gabriella, said: “Chris and I get on so well, and are both passionate about cycling. Now everyone is asking when we are getting a tandem!”
 They are hoping the Coast to Coast ride will raise saddlebags full of money for the Happy House and are being supported by Kirkham Grammar School where Jacob is a pupil, and by Vin Hamer, landlord of the Thatched House, Poulton, who is a member of Poulton Wheelers. The Orchid Group, owners of the Thatched, has made a donation of £250.
You can support Wheelers for Watamu challenge by making a donation online at
Pictures; top,Chris O’Hare and Fiona.
above: Fiona, Vin Hamer (landlord of the Thatched House), Chris and Jacob O’Hare.

Sunday, 27 April 2014

The exams - by Mercy

Our children might be on holiday from school, but the recent exams are Mercy's subject for today's blog:
"Our blogger today is Mercy and I want to talk about the end term exams. 
We revised so hard so that we can do better in the exams also our teachers helped us in any questions we don’t know so that when a question like that came in the exam you will not miss because you have revised and  asked some questions beforehand.

We  did the exams for only two days on Wednesday and Thursday, on Wednesday we started with maths, English, iand composition and on Thursday we started  with science, Kiswahili and social studies. In my turn a saw Kiswahili so easy and my best subject is science, l like science .
I hope I will do the best."

Saturday, 26 April 2014

A visit from Grandpa

 There was a special visitor for Mama when Grandpa Yaa came to call.
It was Grandpa who so generously gifted a 99-year lease on the land on which the Happy House is built to Mama and her charity way back in 2008 and he is always very welcome to call in to see Mama, Papa and the children.
He and Mama enjoyed some time together catching up on family news.

Friday, 25 April 2014

Pitching in together

Our Happy House boys lined up against kids from Kijiwetanga  for a friendly game of football hosted at home.
Mama has always intended that kids from other schools and children's homes should be able to benefit from the excellent facilities that we have and yesterday was a school holidays opportunity to enjoy some friendly rivalry and to improve their soccer skills with coaching from  our coach Mr Steve and other Happy House teachers.

Thursday, 24 April 2014

Glasses for glasses!

One of our very first volunteers, Hailey Aspinall Ellis is a true friend to Stevie.
A member of his sponsor family, Hailey has known him since he first arrived at the Happy House and went with Uncle Billy on visits to the hospital (pictured) when he was suffering problems with his ears. 
As Stevie wears glasses (and so does Hailey) she has set up a fundraising effort called Glasses for Glasses - thanks to her dad, Trevor Aspinall.
Trevor has an off-licence and convenience store in Torsway Avenue, Blackpool, and is occasionally given promotional gifts by suppliers. 
 He is now offering them to visitors to his shop  the shop in exchange for donations,  with every penny coming to the Happy House.
Hailey, helps out part-time, said:

 "My dad and stepmum, Trevor and Christine  are offering glasses, cups, mugs and anything else they can get for free for a donation of just 50p at their shop.
"My sponsor child, Stevie, wears glasses (like me!) and this money will go a long way to ensuring both his and all the other children's health and wellbeing are well looked after."
 They have raised more than £300 so far and are hoping to reach their target of £500. Thank you to Trevor, Christine and Hailey for their support and to all the customers who have donated. Hailey also has a JustGiving page so friends can donate. The link is
Stevie is pictured with his older brothers Katana,Baraka and Fikiri 

Wednesday, 23 April 2014

School Report: Holiday club action

School manager, Madam Rose brings this week's School Report:
 Now the Easter bank holiday is over, our Happy House Holiday Club is back in full flow and our pupils are enjoying the activities we have on our programme.
In the mornings,  we look back over the last term and do some serious revision brushing up on any weaknesses and building on strengths. 
Then the rest of the day is taken up with fun activities including indoor games, computers, reading, and time telling games for primary pupils while the nursery children enjoy story telling, games, watching a dvd and computers. On Fridays, everyone goes swimming
Pictured are some of the nursery children watching a dvd about the Macarena song with the volunteer Aunty Mckenzie and  (top) Fikiri, Samson and Charo and (right) Rosemary enjoy a relaxing read..      

Tuesday, 22 April 2014

Kids just gotta' have fun

Holidays are about chilling out and having fun.
Be it playing on a swing,  skipping, kicking a ball  or just having a chinwag over the fence everyone makes their own entertainment.
Our Happy House kids are enjoying their break from school and with plenty of space to explore and playmates a plenty, you never hear anyone complain of being bored!
How very special it is for Mama, who created this amazing family, Papa and all those who believe in her Happy House and support all she is doing, to see these kids, free of their fears and worries, just being kids.

Monday, 21 April 2014

A gift from GetFIT

 A  £1000 to towards the cost of an additional inverter to power our solar energy system  has been raised by GetFIT, a Milan-based chain of fitness clubs.
Susanna Gregorgio, whose husband Livio Leardi is CEO and owner  of GetFIT, brought the donation to Mama Sue on her most recent visit to Watamu.
Susanna and Livio are guardians to Levian, a little boy they have took into their hearts after meeting him in a local children's home some years ago.  After seeing the wonderful work being done at the Happy House, and wanting the very best for Levian, they arranged with Mama for Levian to be part of our family, while they meet all the costs of his living expenses and education.
Susanna said: "We are proud to join together with the entire family of Happy House to help Mama Sue to create ambitious projects. Sport is a healthy lifestyle that fully combines the healthy aims of Happy House."
Thank you to Susanna (pictured with Levian and also with Papa wearing the t-shirt she brought him) and Livio and to all the members of GetFIT for their continued support.

Sunday, 20 April 2014

A happy family day for Papa - by Margaret

Today's junior blogger is Margaret, who looks back at a very happy day.
I hope you are fine. I am  happy and fine. I want to talk about Papa Dave's  party. We are organized a party for Papa Dave .We were celebrating Papa's birthday.
We had entertainment ,the cake and lunch, and  then we had the free dance.
The master of ceremony was Musyoka. The DJ was Evans and the dancers were Samson, Margaret, Rukia, Shakila and many others. We enjoyed it together.
Margaret is pictured far(right) carrying out the cake with Daniella( left) and Maria.

Saturday, 19 April 2014

Just a reminder!

Don't forget Sunday is when one of our Happy house kids takes over the blogspot, Tomorrow our junior blogger is Margaret who will be telling us  her news about a very happy family day.

Welcome McKenzie

Welcome to our new volunteer McKenzie Meservey  from the USA.
McKenzie is a student at St Lawrence University and will be with our family for a month.
McKenzie is helping out wherever she is needed and is pictured here  with cook Uncle Baya in the kitchen making bread for breakfast.
Welcome McKenzie wish you a life-enriching and happy time.

Friday, 18 April 2014

Another day brings another birthday ..

There was another birthday celebration yesterday when one of our day pupils, Rosemary, celebrated her special day with all the family.
Out of school for the Easter break, the children are attending fun activities at Holiday Club so they are all still together.
Rosemary brought her cake, hats and treats to share and chose her friends Joy and Rukia to sit alongside her, and to daub her face with icing for good luck!
Many happy returns Rosemary, thanks you for caring and for sharing.

Thursday, 17 April 2014

Easter birthdays

There are two Easter week birthdays to celebrate at the Happy House.
Jane will be 12 on Easter Sunday and received her birthday gift at Kidz Club when Papa Dave did the honours by handing over the goodies!
Little Ndoro, who was three yesterday, was presented with his birthday present by Mama Sue.
Everyone sang happy birthday to Jane and Ndoro.
Lots of love and greetings to both of you.

Wednesday, 16 April 2014

School report Term ends on a high note

 The school term came to and end with a closing day ceremony attended by parents, guardians and friends,
The children entertained the audience with poems, songs and short plays, including one about the parable of the prodigal son performed by Evans Khamisi and day pupil Faida Petersen. 
The children were well rehearsed for the programme they presented after giving a final rehearsal to Mama and uncle Billy who ensured that their items were polished to perfection.
During the morning Mama Sue addressed the assembly and told them of her delight introducing a scholarship scheme to enable some of the most needy in the community to attend our school.
They were also told that the school had now received its registration and as part of the requirements had been renamed Hayward Happy House School.
Manager Madam Rose, Head teacher Madam Joy, Deputy Head teacher Madam Milka concerning the general progress of the school.
Results were announced and the top three pupils in each class were awarded certificates.
They are:
 Standard 1:  1 Djamila Musa, 2 Benedict Waita, 3 Fatma Muhamed
Std 2:  1 Oscar Chengo, 2 Sid Francis, 3 Salama Baya
Std 3: John Kalume; 2 Selina Kithole; 3 Koki Ngumbao
Std 4: 1 Vaness Mgomba; 2 Tonia Vinna; 3 Rukia Esha
Std 5: 1 Amanda Thawabu; 2 Jacob Iha; 3 Everline Neema
Std 6: 1 Grace Iha; 2 Sharack Nduria; 3 Evans Khamisi
Std 7: Mercy Rehema; 2 Diana Meybu; 3 Kennedy Ajuly
Playgroup:1 Jonathan Shilingi, 2 James Kazungu, 3 Hope Kinya
Baby Class:1 Pretty Wali, 2 Abu Bakari, 3 Saul Karisa
KG1: 1 Mercy Changawa; 2 Dula Alex, 3 Sudi Bakari
KG2: 1 Neema Moschen, 2 Terry Edward, 3 Jordan Baya
KG3: 1 Ushindi Baya, 2 Fatuma Nguma, 3 Favour Thumbi
 Pictured: Top: KG3 perform; Mama presents Oscar with his certificate and Uncle Billy with Sudi. 
Right: Evans and Faida in their play and the audience watching.

Tuesday, 15 April 2014

Iconic shirts reward role models

A lifelong Manchester United fan and a friend of our good friends  Sandra and Derrik Foulkes has donated shirts from his collection of the the iconic club's strip to our Happy House family.
He heard Papa talking about how the kids are football crazy and  sent them our our boys, plus some match programmes and carrier bag.
 It was decided they should go to those who are the most outstanding role models
They are Sifa 15,Evans 14,Fikiri 13 ; Baraka 13 who were  hailed for their obedience,hardwork and respect for everyone in the family.
Many congratulations to the boys pictured above with their Papa, from left: Evans, Sifa, Fikiri and Baraka, and a very big thank you to the generous man who sent them.

Monday, 14 April 2014

Three little ones go home to mums

Ricky, Dulla and Rehema
Ready to board the our bus to go home after school are brother and sister, Rehema and Dulla and little Ricky.
The three children are now back living with their mums after being in our care for several months.
Both mums are on medication for terminal illness, but in the time their children have been looked after at the Happy House they have had a chance to get their medication on track, build themselves up and to get work.
Entirely unrelated, the mums have regularly visited their children who they missed greatly.
Rehema and Dulla’s mum has a job as a house help and Ricky’s mum is making an income from beadwork.
After ensuring  their mums can provide for them, and that everything was in place for the children to be in a safe and loving environments,  Mama and Uncle Billy agreed it was in the children’s best interests to be with their mothers.
Meanwhile, they continue to attend school and holiday club at the Happy House where we will provide free education, transport, uniform, books, meals and healthcare.
By continuing to come to Happy House for school and remaining a part of our family, we will see them every day and can monitor their situation very carefully to ensure it is working for the children, whose interests come above everything else, and always will.
All we do puts the children first and should the situation not work out then we can step in immediately.
Rehema and Dulla, like Ricky,  are now familiar with our family and should the time come that they need to live with our family, permanently or on a temporary basis, we will be here for them.
For now, we truly believe it is in their interests to be with the mums they love whilst remaining close to their Happy House brothers and sisters.
We are delighted the friends in their sponsor families will continue to support them. They will remain much loved members of  our family and  will keep their memory boxes in the office along with those of all their Happy House brothers and sisters so they can stay in touch just as you always have.

Sunday, 13 April 2014

Our beautiful bedrooms - by Jane

Jane is our junior blogger today and she's talking about  the children's bedrooms!
In Happy House we have nine bedrooms only, Upstairs there are three, for boys and girls. The girls have two rooms and the boys have one.
Each room upstairs has six people only and they have a room leader. And the room  leader  of room one is Margaret and the room leader of room two is Janet.
And the leader of the boys’ is Evance.
And downstairs there are six rooms. Three for girls and two for boys and we have one room for babies and there are leaders.
In the first room is Jane, Selina and Jedida and in the second room we have Janet and the third room is Mercy, Maria and Mariam.
And the boys side leader of room one is Evance, Hassan, David and Oscar and the second room is Sifa, Musyoka and Samson. And the baby room is Fikiri.
I like our rooms very much because they are so nice and painted.
Pictured front: Jane, Maria and Mercy. Back row: Janet, Mariam and Lucinda.

Saturday, 12 April 2014

Party for Papa

There has to be a reason to celebrate, but when there are two it is even better!
And Papa's birthday and the start of the school holiday were a  just the opportunities our family needed to plan a party.
The children, busy with exams last week, chose yesterday as party day and they organised all the fun and games to make it very special indeed for their beloved Papa.
They bobbed for apples, danced and tucked into delicious birthday cake once they had all joined in singing Happy Birthday to Papa Dave.
A highlight of the celebration was a tug of war between the male and female staff.
Everyone cheered their loudest as the competition took place. It was a hard fought battle, but the final outcome was that the women triumphed.

Friday, 11 April 2014

Just the ticket!

Our good friend Manuela who works at a  hotel in Watamu,  Villiaggi Bravo, brought three visiting travel agents to look around the  Happy House.
Nadia Belini, LauraTerenzio and Francesca Belloni loved what they saw and had a lovely time meeting Mama Sue and her family.
They all said they would encourage their Italian clients to come and see us too while they are on holiday and we can promise they will receive a very warm welcome.
Thank you Manuela , Nadia, Laura and Francesca.

Thursday, 10 April 2014

Mama's little helper

David has always been a little star, but the more he grows the brighter he shines!
He's overcome so many hurdles in his first three years, never giving in and always smiling.
David, who was diagnosed with Down's Syndrome when he was 11 months old is such a happy little chap, and so helpful too.
After school every day, David and his Happy House brothers and sisters go back home and into their bedrooms to get changed out of their uniform ready to go and play.
David, keen to help and following the example of his older brothers and sisters, gathers up the dirty uniforms and toddles off to take them the laundry
He makes several journeys back and forwards until every last sock is in the wash.
And he is such a big help to all our Aunties, that Mama's given him a Star of the Week award as a special thank you from all the family.
Well done David.

Peak performance!

Conquering Britain’s three highest peaks in 24 hours is the tall order Chloe Groves and Kate Beer women have set themselves.
Chloe and Kate  are taking part in the Three Peaks Challenge on May 10 in a bid to raise money for our Happy House.
Chloe,25, who works for the County Sports Partnership - Sport Across Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent as a Satellite Club Links Officer and Kate, 29, a sports development officer for Stafford Borough Council, are in training for their toughest challenge which will see them trekking up the three highest mountains in Scotland, England and Wales in 24 hours in May.
Chloe said: “The total distance walked is estimated at 42/43 kilometres (26/27 miles) with a total ascent of 9,800 feet. The highest of the three mountains is Ben Nevis in Scotland with an elevation of 1344m above sea level. Second in the challenge is Scafell Pike in the Lake District at 978m - the lowest summit of the three. Finally, we will reach Snowdon in Wales, with an elevation of 1085m.”
Chloe, who is in Said's sponsor family,  and Kate are spurred on by  our family. “The Happy House is a Charity close to our hearts,” said Chloe.“I have been involved with fundraising for a long time along with my family and recently started to sponsor Said.
 “I was lucky enough to go out there last month and to get to know him a little bit.
 "I am looking to motivate others to get involved and to raise some money, and I know that every penny will go directly where it is intended to helping the children."
You can support Chloe and Kate’s challenge by making a donation online at  

Wednesday, 9 April 2014

School report: Scholarship student puts books first

Nassir Juma
In this week's  School  Report, Madam Russell writes:
We are now approaching school closing.
It has been a very long term of 14 weeks leading up to a great deal of preparation and  revision for the end term examination.
Our nursery section commenced their district examinations first, whilst the  primary section started a couple of days later. 
Kg exams
Primary section examinations were held over for two days as scheduled by the District Examination Board in Malindi. 
We expect good results from our pupils. 
Our star of the week is one of our new scholarship students, Nassir Juma .
Nassir is in class 7 and he was  the boy flew our flag during the District ball games  in Malindi when he was also our ambassador.
Over the two day camp held in Gede, Nassir carried his books with him all the time whilstother participants from  other schools who carried their sports kit. 
Primary exams
Our head teacher Madam Joy received several calls from Gede ball games officials congratulating  Nassir for revising his work. 
He is so  thirsty for  knowledge and at the Happy House, has, at  last,  found a place ready and willing to quench his thirst .
Hurray for Nassir Juma.
We are all so thankful for the scholarship scheme.  It is changing young lives.

Primary exams

Tuesday, 8 April 2014

A cup of kindness

Tea, the cup that cheers, is certainly bringing smiles to our Happy House family.
The lovely ladies of Ribblesdale Inner Wheel held an afternoon tea to raise money for our family as its annual overseas event.
Around 90 people attended the tea and after watching our video, A Very Special Job, Val Sharp gave a report updating the many developments that have taken place in our family, including the arrival of many more children, and the opening of the primary school.
The afternoon also featured  a raffle, bring and buy stall and the Goldilocks range of handbags, scarves and costume jewellery.
The tea was a huge success and has raised more than £720 for the Happy House.
Many thanks to everyone who organised or attended the tea. You have been so generous and your donation will help Mama Sue and our charity to take the Happy House forward.