Friday, 31 July 2020

Photography expedition

Mama and Papa are doing all they can to broaden the horizons of the children who have not been outside the Happy House grounds since lockdown began in March.
In the last week some have been going out jogging, staying on the quiet tracks close to home. 
She and Papa invited some of the Classes 1 and 2, plus the KG children, to visit them at home, transporting them to Turtle Bay.
The children took android tablets so they could take photographs in the garden, which is awash with flowers. They were also looking for butterflies and birds.
Papa cooked sausages and bought juice as a treat for them.
Mama said:"They loved their photography outing. Back at Happy House we showed their pictures on the big screen TV. They were all very happy."
The pictures here were taken by the children and, in our video, Esther tells us about their trip.

Thursday, 30 July 2020

Sharing knowledge

Christone, Mr Chris to our Happy House students, has been teaching some of our older children and teachers how to use video communications app Zoom. Evans who made the video is one of the young people to benefit from widening his knowledge of this form of holding everything from family gathering to Parliamentary sittings on the web during the Covid19 Pandemic. He said: "Mr Chris is a good help to the family in terms of technology. He is always ready to help whenever he is needed. He deals with the computers and he led a lesson with the teachers and the kids on Zoom. "He has taught a few and the a few will teach other few until the the whole Happy House family will know how to use it. "We are a caring and a loving family so what one knows he /she should teach the rest of the family. That is our Happy House way."

Wednesday, 29 July 2020

Teaching and learning

 Yesterday, our blog was about Nasri and how Happy House has changed his life.
Today we hear from Michael who is also achieving in life because Happy House gave him a chance. Now, because of the pandemic, his final year at secondary school is likely to be extended as schools in Kenya remain closed. So Mama Sue has given him the opportunity to help our youngsters with their home learning, whilst also being able to revise and keep up with his own studies.

Tuesday, 28 July 2020

A life transformed

Former scholarship student, Nasri, is assisting with home schooling during lockdown.
He was one the first students on our scholarship scheme launched in 2014.
Then he was living with his grandmother in her home.They had very little.
He was shy and lacking in self-belief.and had huge gaps in his schooling because there was no money to pay. He had been forced to have long periods out of class - the one place he wanted to be.
He was one of our first Class 8 Primary kids to take the Kenya Certificate of Primary Education which he passed with flying colours and has since completed his secondary schooling and is studying at university.
Since  lockdown started he has been working with our children at Happy House who are learning at home.
He is grateful for all the support and opportunity that Happy House has, and is, giving him.

Monday, 27 July 2020

School stays out

With schools in Kenya likely to remain closed for the rest of the year, children in our family at Happy House will continue with a full programme of home learning. They being taught by Skype, using the internet the best way we can and Zoom also coming into play. Lessons also harness as many teaching resources as we can find on the internet making learning much more interesting than just using text books. Mama Sue wants to continue this when the children eventually go back to class when our school can reopen. She has received some donations which will help towards each classroom in school having a Smart TV and that one she has been able to buy is now in use in class a home - but will move to school when it reopens.

Sunday, 26 July 2020

Keeping safe

Happy House has installed new equipment to make it easier for children, staff and essential visitors to wash their hands. As countries around the world emerge from lockdowns, enforced following the outbreak of the Coronavirus Covid19 pandemic, they are adjusting to a new kind of normal.
But the threat of the virus still looms large over lives, and the need to stay safe and to maintain social distancing and hand-washing is still vital. As Rukia tells us, at Happy House they are taking no chances.

Saturday, 25 July 2020

Broadening horizons

After months in lockdown some of our children are venturing out of the Happy House to go jogging. We are in a very quiet and safe area so they a staying safe and not in any danger of contracting Covid19. Mama Sue thought it would now be safe for them to broaden their horizons after weeks of being confined to our grounds - and she loves them too much to put them at any risk. Our video features three youngsters - Mwende, Florence and Brian.

Friday, 24 July 2020

Video stars

Meet our four young video stars Abdul, Lesley, Daudi and Edward. these Happy House kids are talking about different types of plants growing our garden that help keep them happy and healthy. Abdul talks about moringa which they take as a tea every day and is full of health benefits. Lesley's subject is banana , sweet and nutritious, while Edward's choice is lemons - so sour but great for use in cooking. Lastly, Daudi tells us about casava which is again used in cooking - both the root and the leaves.

Thursday, 23 July 2020

Pumpkin patch Lucky

Our Happy House kids are great little gardeners and take a great interest in the plants they grow. And they know that all the vegetables and fruit that are grown are the garden will go straight in to our kitchen and on to their plates! Here we join Lucky on the pumpkin patch.

Wednesday, 22 July 2020

Teaching and learning too

Yesterday, our blog was about Nasri and how Happy House has changed his life.
Today we hear from Michael who is also achieving in life because Happy House gave him a chance.
Now, because of the pandemic, his final year at secondary school is likely to be extended as schools in Kenya remain closed.
So Mama Sue has given him the opportunity to help our youngsters with their home learning, whilst also being able to revise and keep up with his own studies.

Victory is Papa's

There's a tree in the Happy House grounds with a sign attached - it reads : Reserved: Leeds United Supporter. It's for Papa Dave only! The proud Yorkshire man has been supporting Leeds since he was mere but a boy, and has stuck with them through the highs and lows. In Watamu, where everyone supports a team in the UK Premier League, Papa has always stayed true to Leeds as they battled on in the Championship League. . At Happy House he has his own little Leeds Army that Marches on Together. So imagine Papa's elation as, after 16 years, Leeds has been promoted to the Premier League and has won the Championship. He and his army are rightly victorious!

Tuesday, 21 July 2020

Treat for our family

A good friend of our charity, David Wickins, has also joined our sponsor family.
David is sponsoring one of our older children, Rukia.And David sent Mama a donation to buy a treat for all our children.Kidz Club on Saturdays is the time for treats and Mama decided on the children's favourite fruit - apples.They are expensive to buy so they don't have them very often.In this video Mama says thank you to David and all those who sponsor our children, and Rukia and her brother Said say thank you for the treats before handing them out to their "brothers and sisters"

Monday, 20 July 2020

Ceiling success

A problem with birds getting in through the makuti roof at Happy House School led to the decision to install ceilings. It was a tough decision for Mama Sue but with the school closed because of the pandemic it was also a good opportunity to get the work done by our Happy House joiner and maintenance staff. Today we reveal the result!

Sunday, 19 July 2020

Laundry blowing in the wind

It's a first video from Vidzo. She is a little bit nervous as she tells us about how the poor weather had been making it difficult to dry the washing. But the sun had returned and the washing was out on the lines. And Happy House, with a family of 60 children, that's a very good reason to sigh with relief!

Saturday, 18 July 2020

Florence the sports commentator

Today, Florence turns sports commentator. She introduces us to action on the netball "court "at Happy House. The children had started the morning with a quiz, followed by a tasty snack, before enjoying watching and taking part in sporting activities. We join the orange and green teams competing in a netball match.

Friday, 17 July 2020

Making repairs

With a family of 60 children, there are always shoes in need of repairs at Happy House. And Oscar and some of our other older boys have been learning how to mend them. They are always eager to learn new skills and our members of staff are happy to share their knowledge, so the boys are now enjoying helping out.

Thursday, 16 July 2020

Sandwich special

Children living at the Happy House love sandwiches. They're not something local people eat but Mama Sue has introduced them to or kids. The youngsters also help to make the bread, which is cooked in a wood-fired oven, so it is fresh and delicious. Here Husna tells us more about it and our second video is of the family tucking in at lunchtime.

Wednesday, 15 July 2020

Weekend fun

In this video Happy House kid, Diana, tells us what the children get up to at weekends. Still in lockdown they are at home all the time but with a routine of schooling during the week so it's pretty much as normal. At weekends, they have lots of fun an some organised action too.

Tuesday, 14 July 2020

Braids of love

When life is normal, our girls are able to go out to have their hair braided. They go in small groups, the older ones taking the littles ones, to some of the many women who run their braiding "salons' from home. But in lockdown it has been very different. The older girls help the younger ones, carefully taking out braids, washing their hair and rebraiding it, as Diana explains as she works on the hair of her little "sister" Elizabeth. Then they help each other - as sisters do!

Monday, 13 July 2020

A letter for Diana

Letters, postcards and emails from members of their sponsor families means so much to children at Happy House. Knowing that there are people, beyond the Happy House, who care for them, who take an interest in their progress and want to share their own family news makes them feel special. We have recently been sending out short videos of our children to their sponsors and sponsors, we prefer to call them friends, have been writing in response. Here Diana reads out a letter from her friend, Elizabeth Cooper.
You can email your sponsor child via

Sunday, 12 July 2020

Bargain Betty's 80

One of our wonderful friends known to us all as "Bargain Betty' has just celebrated her 80th birthday and is still shopping! Betty Hatch, who lives in Essex, loves to shop and has made it her mission to send out as many children's clothes as she can for our children. And she has such a keen eye for a bargain she gets some wonderful items at knock-down prices. Lockdown has, of course, curbed her shopping this year but as soon as it is sage she will be back on the hunt for a bargain. Many of our children remember Betty from when she visited with her son, Paul, a few years ago but for those who don't Mama Sue handed round a photograph of Betty on her birthday for everyone to see. And she reminded them that it's Betty who keeps them all stocked up with knickers and underpants - items that we can never have enough of. Betty, who sponsors Stephano, not only sends parcels, she also makes a donation to cover the cost of any import duty on the goods she sends - which is a massive help. Betty we love you, and thank you for all your kindness all our children.

Saturday, 11 July 2020

`Our special brother

Evans is the young man behind the production of our  recent videos.
He's a talented and caring young man who has been living in our family since he was just a little boy so he knows what it's like to grow up as a par of our Happy House family.
Today the video features David taking part in the quiz day,
Evans writes: "This special member of the family was brought to the family as a very little kid by Mama and he was given the love that a child should get. 
"He has some difficulties with his learning but ,as a family, we assist him so that  he can continue with his learning. He is loved by the family.
"So during this quiz day, I must say as a big brother to David  I was really impressed with him because he could answer a question without any problem. 
"What a difference this new method of learning it has brought to this special brother, we thank Mama for this new method truly, it has really changed everyone at home."

Friday, 10 July 2020

Surprise certificate

Nobody ever gets left out at Happy House where everyone grows up learning to care and share. At the end of the revision quiz, after a prayer of thanks, Mama presented one final certificate to one little boy who, despite being only 20 months old, likes to join in with everything and always tries his best! So much to everyone's delight, Victor, toddled up to receive his award!

Thursday, 9 July 2020

Making revision fun

Home school continues to fire the enthusiasm of our children at Happy House as they adapt to new ways of doing things during in lockdown Mama Sue thought a quiz would be a great way to revise what the children had been learning in class and each child was asked questions specific to their topics they'd been studying. Evans writes: "We had a quiz and it was a very special time for the whole family. The kids were just being asked questions that they have been learning in class, and as a family we were all glad to see how the kids were confident and could answer the questions. "So before we began, mama opened the session with some comments and also with a word of prayer."

Wednesday, 8 July 2020

An update from Mama Sue

With our Happy House family in lockdown since March, the family has got used to a new way of life and learning. Today Mama Sue brings you an update on all our news. And wherever Mama is, there will always be some children with her. Today she's joined by Edward, Lesley, AbdulMalik and Daudi.

Monday, 6 July 2020


Happy House children helped to sow the maize seeds just as the rainy season was approaching. Now a few months later, and after some of the heaviest downpours we have seen for some years, they are helping to harvest it. Nurtured by nature's warmth and rain and ripened by the sun, we've got a good crop which will help to feed the 60 hungry kids who live in our care. Like the maize they shoot up too!

Sunday, 5 July 2020

Action replay

Evans who has taken on the role of Happy House football coach is harnessing technology to show his own action replays. And by showing the kids videos of their moves on the soccer pitch he can talk them through where they are performing well or where they can brush up on their skills. Evans tells us that the kids find this a great way to learn.

Saturday, 4 July 2020

Love letters

Some of our older kids at Happy House have been busy sanding and painting wooden alphabet letters. Evans said: "The kids are growing quickly because they are surrounded by love which is very special. " So as they grow, they take on more responsibilities which is very nice. "Brian and the other big boys are helping in painting of some alphabet letters that will be used by their younger brothers and sisters. "They are happy to take these different responsibilities."

Friday, 3 July 2020

Ceiling costs

It's been one expense after another at Happy House as the heavy rains have found every little flaw in our building - at home and at school. And add to that the problem of birds! While our school has been closed the birds have found their way through the makuti roof to make nests in our four upstairs primary classrooms. And Mama has decided to install ceilings after making sure the roof is completely secure. We already put ceilings in some of the classrooms but these four remained open when the money ran out. Now our joiners, assisted by our general staff, are working on putting in ceilings in all four rooms at a cost of more than £1,000.

Thursday, 2 July 2020

Pick a pepper

Some of our children have been in our greenhouses helping to pick pepper. The heat and the rain and brought us a good crop of green peppers which the children picked and took to the kitchen where they will be use in making soups and stews. Vegetables do not get fresher than this. Our video is presented by Mwende.

Wednesday, 1 July 2020

Our special boy David

Our junior David Hayward is a remarkable story of success.. Named after our own Papa Dave, he is a champion child who has overcome one obstacle after another since he was abandoned in hospital by his mother when he was only a few days old. Ten years on, David is flourishing and reaching new landmarks with each day that passes. Not all of you will know his his story. Mama Sue and Happy House were alerted to his plight when he was left at hospital and we supported him until he was well enough to come home to join our family. Concerned that he was not progressing as a baby should, Mama Sue took him to one doctor after another and when he was 11 months she took him to a specialist centre in Kilifi where she was told he would not amount to anything and to "take him home and love him". We did much more than give him love, sought expert advice, put a programme of three -times daily exercises into practice, and our whole family, kids and adults, encourage him to take part in everything we do. We ensure David has any additional help he needs in school and at home and time and time again he rewards our efforts with his courage and his smiles and his results. Her Mama, along with David and his best friend Abdul Malik, tells us more about his progress. Please share this video with your friends and family, we need more friends for our family and we always need more funds to out the best in every child who comes into our care. Without you our work would be impossible.