Thursday, 31 January 2019

Exam ready!

Our Class 8 primary students at Happy House School will be taking their Kenya Certificate of Primary Education Examination in November.
And although it is 10 months away, the administrative preparations have to be in place now.
The national exams are hugely important  because without them youngsters cannot go on to secondary school.
While the kids have spent eight years in readiness for the exams, and whose focus in the terms ahead, will be on those big exams, staff have to ensure every pupil sitting the KCPE exams are registered now.
Head teacher Mr Isaac, and IT man Mr Omoi have been the people ensuring this is done.

Wednesday, 30 January 2019

A matter of convenience

As our school population grows at Happy House School so must our facilities.
And that includes those serving our most natural needs, which is why we expanded our toilet block and the cess pits needed.
Digging out the additional cess pit provided the coral which was used to face the mew computer suite giving it the finishing touch.
The work was done over the long school holiday while builders were also on site constructing the new computer suite so it made sense to get both jobs done in tandem.
The result is that we have more toilets for both girls and boys  and staff which should make it much quicker and comfortable for both teachers and staff.
Mama Sue and our school principal and headteacher have  reminded the students of the importance to look after their surroundings and to use the toilets with respect.
Cleanliness is so important and the toilets are checked and cleaned at regular intervals throughout the school day.

Tuesday, 29 January 2019

Visiting the Happy House

Mama Sue was delighted to welcome two visitors from the UK, Angela Lewis and David Paris.
They were keen to see our Happy House children's home and school and were impressed by the standard of care and education we give to our children.
They very kindly donated £100 which they and Mama agreed will be used to buy text books for school.
Angela and David are also looking forward to sponsoring two of our children which is lovely and we are delighted to welcome them to our family of sponsors.
David and Angela very kindly agreed to make a short video about their visit.

Monday, 28 January 2019

Happy House in bloom

Our secondary students at Happy House School have been enhancing the school grounds by planting flowers in the newly created raised borders outside the computer suite.
 The young people who take a great pride in being at our school were tasked with putting in the plants to spell out Happy House.
Once matured it will look very nice indeed.

Sunday, 27 January 2019

An act of kindness by Janet

Janet has been a member of our Happy house family since we opened the Happy House children's home almost nine years ago. She arrived with her younger brothers Evans and Oscar and they can still recall those early days when we were waiting for a container load of furniture and other essentials to arrive from the UK. She has a family of sponsors who have truly enhanced her life and she is grateful to them. We have recorded a number of children and staff talking about Acts of Kindness and we will publish them on the blog every now and again. They are a reminder of how kindness comes in many forms and of how it should never be taken for granted.

Saturday, 26 January 2019

Chicken troubles

Our flock of chickens at Happy House has been almost wiped out by a virus infection.
We have just two birds remaining after a serious disease, affecting flocks in our area, reached our chicken run.
It such a setback as we were growing or flock well and the kids loved helping to look after the birds which were producing eggs to be used in our kitchen- our picture of Brian feeding the chickens is from a few months ago.
Here  a very sad Papa Dave explains more.

Friday, 25 January 2019

Projector installed

An overhead projector gives the finishish touch to the new computer suite at Happy House school.
In this video, Mr Omoi talks about how the projector will help in delivering lessons and as there is a computer lesson in progress, Mr Kelvin, the computer teacher gives an insight into what the children are learning.
The purpose built suite, completed this month, is a huge asset to our school.

Thursday, 24 January 2019

Inter-house soccer

 Games lessons are always popular with our athletic kids at Happy House School.
And they are even better when they involve a game of football!
All the youngsters love soccer.  
Our teacher organised inter-house matches.between the houses in their 
The first match t match was between the red and blue house 
which ended with a 2-0 scoreline. the second game was between yellow end with green winning 1-0.  
The final blew on the final between red and green houses it was 0-0 draw.

Wednesday, 23 January 2019

Computer lesson

Our new computer suite is making teaching and learning so much more enjoyable.
With each student as his or her own workstation in the spacious classroom everyone is more comfortable because they are no longer crammed in.
Mr Kelvin, our computer teacher, is taking a lesson with primary students in today's video.

Tuesday, 22 January 2019

Start the week

The Monday morning assembly is when our students at Happy House School are focussed on the week ahead.
Uncle Ronald, our social worker, reinforced the message of last week when they were told to organise themselves so that any work they were given to do out of school was completed on time.
Mr Isaac, head teacher, reminded the young people about the importance of personal cleanliness and issued a warning to those who insist on playing around the toilet block.
Assembly began with the scouts raising the national flags of Kenya and the UK.

Monday, 21 January 2019

Crunch question

Can you say biscuits? That was the crunch question Mama Sue asked her kids at the weekly family gathering at Happy House .
It's a word our children find it hard to get their tongues around with many saying 'bisquits" instead.
So ask she was giving out the treats she asked each child to say biscuits much to their amusement.
At Kidz Club two birthdays were also celebrated, those for Hussein and Neema John.  The kids received their gifts and greetings Hussein is pictured with Papa and Neema with Mama.
There was lots of singing and laughter too.   

Sunday, 20 January 2019

Helping in the kitchen

One of our older boys. John. is today's guest blogger.
He's talking for our outside kitchen where he enjoys helping out in food preparation and cooking.
With so many mouths to feed, our cooks are delighted to have willing helpers.
And learning to cook is a valuable life skill which will help John as he goes through life.

Saturday, 19 January 2019

Mama's smiling again

It's Saturday and we have one very happy Mama.
All the kids are home from school and she can spent time having fun with them.
And the kids are happy too, to have Mama and Papa to chat to, sing to and to laugh with. 
There's always laughter at Happy House...

Friday, 18 January 2019

Forest visit

Students from Happy House school's upper primary school were invited by the Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS) to visit the Arabuko-Sokoke forest. 
The main aim was to educate the children on the indigenous trees, birds and animals found in the forest and why is it important to conserve them.
The kids visited the Arabuko-Sokoke forest station and they watched some educational videos about the forest, there was also a PowerPoint presentation on the what the Kenya Wildlife Service and other partners do in relation to wildlife.
There was  a guided tour in the forest to see the different trees, birds and animals found there. 
The kids learnt a lot of things of which later they were requested to write or draw what they saw in the forest.
All the papers were collected and stored as there will be more schools visiting and do the same.
Back at school, the pupils are required to write an essay about their experience of the trip. 
The essay papers will be collected and handed over to the KWS. All schools invited will be doing the same. It is a competition to find the the best writer about wildlife. The winner will be announced later 

Thursday, 17 January 2019

Mama's Empty nest

Poor Mama has been feeling down in the dumps - despite all the excitement and joy of our landmark computer suite.
Why? Because her Happy House nest is empty.
Since the kids went back to school last week,  there are no children at home  and for Mama it is just too, too, quiet!
During the long holiday she has got used to having lots of little people about, popping in and out of her office, plonking themselves down on her settee and telling her what they've been up to.
Now it's all adults, and unless she goes down to school she doesn''t see her kids until they come home.
Mama doesn't like it one bit!

Wednesday, 16 January 2019

Celebration continues

 Mama Sue was absolutely over the moon when she spoke to students and staff of Happy House School who were gathered in the new computer suite to celebrate its completion and opening.
She was in tears as she thanked all who had helped to make it possible.
She urged youngsters to work hard and to follow their dreams.
She was emotional too, because the day also marked what would have been her late father's 96th birthday.
Mama said how she owed her organisational skills to her father who had taught her so much.
The school sang Happy Birthday in memory of her dad, Harold.
They were also addressed by computer teacher Mr Kelvin, primary head teacher Mr Issac and principal Md Caroline.
And final year student, Nasri, whose scholarship has changed his life spoke about how the lives of students were enhanced by computer knowledge and how much they appreciated the "golden chance' given to them by an education in our school.

Tuesday, 15 January 2019

Ribbon is cut!

 Mama Sue cut the ribbon to declare the Happy House School Computer Suite officially open.
And ,for the first time, the suite was on view to all the children who will be using it and whose education will be enhanced by it.
And with gladness and gratefulness they sang one of their favourite songs: Magic Penny.
It's all sharing the love you have in your heart, something we know all about at Happy House.
If it wasn't for the love and generosity of those who support us, who believe in Mama Sue and her work with disadvantaged children, we would not exist. Nor would we have wonderful facilities like this new purpose-built suite.
So here are a few of the words from the song:
Love is something if you give it away,
Give it away, give it away.
Love is something if you give it away,
You end up having more.
It's just like a magic penny,
Hold it tight and you won't have any. 
Lend it, spend it, and you'll have so many
They'll roll all over the floor.
After the song,  form 4 secondary student, Franco, made a speech  and presentation to thank Mama, Papa, our donors and all those who helped to make the suite possible .

Monday, 14 January 2019

Flags fly for opening day!

Our computer suite is officially open!
The flags were flying, the kids were singing and Mama and Papa were thrilled to bits to be showing students the wonderful new facility constructed since they broke up for the long holiday in October.
And as you couldn't be with us we are bringing the opening ceremony to you.
The suite, gifted by Mark and Amanda Barron, is a huge landmark in the development of the Happy House and will help drive forward the education that is, to our children, the road out of poverty.
This is one of a series of videos featuring the opening day which we will show over consecutive days on our blog.
We hope you will enjoy being a part of our joyful day.

Sunday, 13 January 2019

A gift for Brian

There was a special delivery for Happy House kid Brian Isiaho when Maddy Davies arrived with a gift from his friends at a London Prep school.
Brian is sponsored by Mrs Catherine Davies' Form 6D at The Hall School.
The youngsters at the school follow Brian's progress and wanted to buy him a special gift at Christmas. They chose a Manchester City  kit - the football team that both Brian and Mama Sue support!
Maddy is Mrs Davies' niece and as she was travelling to Watamu to spend time with her parents (her dad Damian is general manager at Turtle Bay Beach Club Hotel) she was only too happy to bring a parcel for Brian.
He was thrilled with his gift as were all our children who received gifts from their sponsors.
We are grateful to you for thinking of them and including them in your present buying. Thank you.

Saturday, 12 January 2019

New starters

Our Pre-primary section at Happy House School is welcoming school starters this week.
And the little ones, getting their first taste of school, are all settling well enjoying the happy, organised and caring ethos of our school.
Md Neema, one of our teachers, introduces you to her section in this video.

Friday, 11 January 2019

It's finished!

Today, in an emotional Mama Sue talks to us from the new computer suite at Happy House School.
As we come to the end of the first week of the new academic year,  the purpose built suite is ready to a take in its first classes of children.
The computers have been installed, the internet connected, and the 30 workstations set up.
Only the chairs are missing, our joiner Charo and his assistant are well on the way with those, but for the time being we'll make do with some old ones which are well past their best.
The suite has been gifted by Mark and Amanda Barron who are such good friends to our family and we will never be able to thank them enough.
Mama is excited as she is emotional as she describes the life-changing power of this wonderful facility.  It will educate our children in 21st century technology - a huge plus when they enter the workplace.
In a second video, Mama is in the suite with our builder Carlos who was responsible for constructing the suite, to Mama's specifications (click on link for video:
Work started when school broke up in October and his team has worked hard to have it ready for the new term.

Thursday, 10 January 2019

Computer suite almost ready

The new computer suite at Happy House School is almost completed.
Work started on the purpose built suite in October.
The building, complete with workstations for 30 computers, is now right at the finishing stages as our social worker, Uncle Ronald, explains.

Wednesday, 9 January 2019

School opening day

This week sees the start of a new academic year in Kenya and our children from Happy House were eager to get back after their long holiday.
The opening assembly was led by our scouts who marched for the flag raising ceremony.
Mama Sue welcomed everyone and told them about all the work that had been done to improve their surroundings during the holidays.
The new computer suite is almost completed and additional toilets have been added.
Our school is run on a non-profit basis but takes some fee-paying students to help sustain the school and the high standard of education it offers.
Mama welcomed new starters and asked our kids to make them welcome and the show them the caring and sharing way we do things at Happy House.
Uncle Ronald, our social worker, and Mr Isaac, head teacher, also had some welcome words for the students.
Papa Dave, also known as Radio Watamu, kept them up to date with the weekend football scores!
Happy times, kids.

Tuesday, 8 January 2019

Back from home visits

 When Happy House school closed for the holidays in October, many of the children living in the care of our children's home were able to go to visit relatives.
Mama Sue and our social worker, Uncle Ronald, agreed that the long break was an opportunity to see how the kids adapted to life back in the community with relatives who are now in a position to give them a home.
And if, by the start of the new term. they were settled and wanting to stay back at home then we would do all we could to make it possible.
On Friday, some returned to our care whilst others have stayed with the relatives.   It's an emotional time for Mama who looks upon each one as her own, but who truly believes that, if possible,  a child should be with family members who love them.
Here Mama talks to you from Happy House with some of the children who have come back to us.


Monday, 7 January 2019

Booking in

When the new school year starts in today in Kenya, our children at Happy House will have all they need - thanks to you.
They will skip off to our school wearing uniform and shoes that fit and equipped with everything they need - pencils and exercise books for the tinies to more specialist equipment, like geometry sets, for the older children.
And, of course, they will also have the text books they require for each subject.
Without you, the people who believe in the work our charity doing and who give so generously, it would have been a different story for these kids who have experienced so much hardship before coming to Happy House Children's Home.
Now they can go back to school with wearing shoes that shine as brightly as their smiles.
Thank You.

Sunday, 6 January 2019

All set for school

Our kids at Happy House are all set for school to start tomorrow.
They have been spending the weekend making sure they have all they need for the start of a new academic year in Happy  House School when they all go up to a new form.
After being off school since October, they are more than ready to be back in class and are looking forward to seizing the opportunities on offer.

Saturday, 5 January 2019

Getting ready for school

With school starting on Monday, it's been a busy time for our aunties.
The children at Happy House have been on holiday since October and, in the way kids do, they been growing like weeds!
So since before Christmas, Auntie Millicent has been checking on who has outgrown their uniform and seeing what clothes that have been outgrown can be handed down to a smaller child.
She's been working alongside Auntie Constance who makes all the uniforms to ensure that anyone needing new will have it, and to see that any repairs are done.
She says thank you to everyone who responded to our appeal for new school socks - we can never have too many!
By Monday, every child will be kitted out from top to toe and ready to report to school looking super smart.

Friday, 4 January 2019

In fine voice

Our girls and boys formed groups to present songs at an impromptu concert at the Happy House New Year Party.
It was a joyful family time when all the kids sang their hearts out.
The younger boys did actions to their song and were led by our very confident David! Click on this link to watch them in action )
Adults too did their bit in the singing stakes as we mentioned on yesterday's blog.

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Thursday, 3 January 2019

Happy House welcomes 2019

 There was a special lunch to herald the start of 2019 at Happy House.
At the kids' request, they tucked into a delicious chicken pilau.
Afterwards Mama Sue thanked the cook for a lovely meal and also talk about the way the Happy House works as a family.
The duty indoor and outdoor staff who had also sat down with the kids and Mama and Papa for lunch, were thanked for the way they work together in the interests of the children.
Mama also spoke to the kids wishing them well as they get ready to start an new school year and welcoming back some of the older boys who have returned to Happy House having been repatriated for a time.
Later there was lots of fun and entertainment with staff taking turns in doing their own solo spots! (click on this link for video:
We are proud of our family and look forward to seeing what 2019 has in store.

Wednesday, 2 January 2019

Farewell to friends

There was a super end-off for our new friends as they set off for their home in Italy.
Dario Diomedi, his wife Sabrina and their daughters Flaminia and Greta enjoyed a morning with our family at Happy House, joining in singing, chatting with Mama, Papa and the the kids and watching impromptu performances the three little Pigs and The Three Billy Goats Gruff.
Dario and Sabrina brought with them lots of fresh fruit which was cut up and enjoyed by everyone (click on link see video:}
They also brought a gift for Joshua, their sponsor friend, who was thrilled to bits with his Kenya football strip (click on this link to see video: ).
Greta and Flaminia  had fun joining in games with the kids.
Everyone was sad to see them go, just as they were sad to be leaving.
We thank them for their love and their interest and for travelling all this way to visit.
We hope they will come back again soon.

Tuesday, 1 January 2019

New Year Greeting

Happy New Year.
As 2019 unfolds,  Happy House can look ahead to it's ninth birthday and back over the hundreds of kids its has helped since it took in its first child in February 2010.
And today, Mama Sue shares her feelings with you as she talks about the way our work has developed.

We had no idea in those early days that reuniting families would be possible, let alone become a key part of our work.But it has and we are proud that we are leading the way in restoring children into the community as well as ensuring that those for whom it will not be an option have a loving, caring and happy childhood in our Happy House family.Mama, sweltering in the Kenyan heat, has by her side Lucky and Emmanuel. Lucky listens intently whilst Emmanuel, full of lunch. is trying hard to stay awake.Wherever Mama goes at Happy House, there will always be a little person by her side.She's their Mama, after all!And without you, the lovely people who sponsor, fundraise and donate, there would be no Happy House for these kids and nowhere for Sue to be their Mama.
Thank you.
We wish you a happy, healthy and peaceful 2019.