Saturday, 31 October 2020

Soccer catch-up for kids

Morphin and his friends at Happy House were thrilled to be able to catch-up on watching one of last weekend's matches -Leeds United vs Aston Villa. The match was too late for the kids to watch live but they were glued to the television for the catch-up all wanting to know the scores. Some of them support Leeds just like their Papa Dave, so it was a good outcome for them with Leeds winning 3-0!

Friday, 30 October 2020

Parcel brings delight

A parcel full of lovely goodies for our children has arrived from our wonderful friends in Essex, Betty Hatch and her son Paul. Betty, known affectionately as "Bargain Betty" because of her amazing shopping skills, buys up whatever sales bargains she can knowing that whatever she buys will fit someone in her family. They also sent seeds for our young gardeners to plant in their plots and more would always be welcomed! Paul, who enjoys following the blog, is a football fan like the rest of our family and he very kindly added some posters to be handed out to kids who follow a particular club player. He even popped in a Leeds poster for Papa Dave, the club's keenest fan in Kenya! Our love and thanks to Betty and to Paul for their love, kindness and generosity. Where would we be without friends like you?

Thursday, 29 October 2020

Life lesson from John

John had a tough life and very little schooling before he joined our Happy House family. Now, a few years on, he's a responsible and helpful young man who has worked hard in school and to catch up on missed time. He has learnt a lot from Mama Sue about self-discipline, taking initiative, good manners and being a role model. With humour, he addressed the the confidence building workshop aimed to help students from Years 4 and 8 settle back at school after the seven month pandemic-enforced break.

Wednesday, 28 October 2020

No need to be afraid

Rukia was another of our Happy House kids asked to help youngsters returning to school. And here she passes on some very good advice about not being afraid to ask a question. Tomorrow in the last of the videos from the building self-confidence workshop, it will be John's turn to talk to the students back in school after a seven-month break.

Tuesday, 27 October 2020

Advice from Oscar

Oscar is a bright and intelligent by who has been a member of our family since the Happy House opened in 2010. He arrived with his sister Janet and brother Evans. Janet is now working as an assistant in our school and Evans is in his final year of secondary education. All three have grown up with Mama Sue guidance and example. They are confident and capable and well able to think for themselves. Here Oscar, who led the exercises, passes on some advice to the other children in school to help them settle back after a seven-month enforced absence because of the pandemic.

Monday, 26 October 2020

Building back-to-school confidence

After a seven-month enforced break, two year groups have returned to school in Kenya. Classes 4 and 8 are back, and while the kids living in our care at Happy House have been receiving home-schooling throughout the pandemic-prompted closure, the children coming into our school from community have not. So knowing it would be a strange time for some, Mama Sue suggested a workshop aimed at building their self-confidence would be a good idea. It began with exercises, for teachers and students! We will bring you more about the workshop tomorrow.

Sunday, 25 October 2020

James is toddling like a trooper!

One last month and James, the youngest member of our Happy House family, is already on his feet and toddling like a trooper! James, a foundling who came into our care when he was 15 days old, certainly makes his presence felt as he runs around shouting at Kidz Club, with all his "brothers" and "sisters" cheering him on. Evans tells us: "He is an active member of the family and we really love him. He is joined by his elder "brother" Victor who makes sure the team is complete." They will be queueing up for school uniforms next!

Saturday, 24 October 2020

Happy House changed my life

When Nasri Juma came to Happy House as one of our Dr Danwata scholars in 2014 he was shy and lacking in self-belief. There had been huge gaps in his schooling because there was no money to pay. He was living in poverty with his grandmother, his mother had left him a long ago. But despite not being in school, Nasri hadn't lost his thirst for knowledge, school was the one place he wanted to be. He knew that with an education he would be able to break free of the poverty that had dominated his life and will help him to make a better life for his grandmother too. Nasri was one of our first Class 8 Primary kids to take the Kenya Certificate of Primary Education. They all passed with flying colours. He was also one of thefirst to complete his secondary education - again with excellent marks in his KCSE, He is now working at Happy House, assisting with computer lessons in school, whilst studying for higher education by distance learning. Please watch the video as Nasri talks about Happy House and what it means to him and ask yourself if you could afford £20 a month to sponsor a child and to give them a chance please email

Friday, 23 October 2020

Soccer casualty charity

Charity went crashing during a game of football and ended up at hospital! All the kids, girls and boys, at Happy House love a game of soccer and Charity, who used to be so quiet, was in her element when she went toppling. 

She was taken to Malindi, where an x-ray revealed a broken arm. 

It is now in a cast and she returned to hospital the following day to check all was well.

Evans tells us: " She is a brave girl and at the hospital the doctors congratulated her for being very brave.

" It was not easy but, with girl power, she managed it.

"Mama Sue decided that Charity and all the family should have a treat to cheer up the brave little girl."

Thursday, 22 October 2020

Fun in the sun 2

Our children from Happy House had a great time on their trip to the beach. It was one of their treats for Mama Sue's birthday and they had such fun. Mama says by the time they got home they were all tired out!

Wednesday, 21 October 2020

Fun in the sun 1

Children from the Happy House had great fun playing on the sand and splashing in the sea as one of the treats for Mama Sue's birthday.

 A beach outing, before the sun gets too hot, is one of their favourite treats but with 60 children takes some organising and supervising.

The older ones are wonderful big brothers and sisters and happy to look after and keep the little ones safe.

Tuesday, 20 October 2020

A letter of love for Mama

You can't have too much of a good thing - but after celebrating Mama Sue's birthday over two weeks, everyone was feeling just a bit tired by Saturday afternoon! A early morning trip to beach, with lots of running about and swimming, was probably the real reason the kids were flagging at Kidz Club. It was one of the treats Mama had organised for the family and early mornings ensure they are there and back before the sun gets to it hottest. Here Mama tells us more about her two-week birthday!

Monday, 19 October 2020

Mama's two week birthday

You can't have too much of a good thing - but after celebrating Mama Sue's birthday over two weeks, everyone was feeling just a bit tired by Saturday afternoon! A early morning trip to beach, with lots of running about and swimming, was probably the real reason the kids were flagging at Kidz Club. It was one of the treats Mama had organised for the family and early mornings ensure they are there and back before the sun gets to it hottest. Here Mama tells us more about her two-week birthday!

Sunday, 18 October 2020

The corn is as high as ... our Happy House kids!

Our young gardeners at Happy House are doing so well the maize they have planted has grown taller than they are! In this video John is in the garden with Erick, one of the younger children who come to the garden every day, after school, to ensure their plants have all they need to be strong and healthy.

Saturday, 17 October 2020

Birthday love and lollipops

It was Mama Sue's birthday yesterday and , not keeping the treats to herself, there were lollipops all round for for the children. They held a special Kidz Club so the family wish their much loved Mama a very happy day and to sing Happy Birthday. There will be another treat for everyone tomorrow. Here Mama tells us about that and says thank you to everyone who has sent her gifts and greetings.

Friday, 16 October 2020

Happy birthday, Mama Sue

Today, we wish our wonderful and inspirational Mama Sue a very happy birthday.
This, our 10th anniversary year, has been a challenging year and for Mama, with 60 children in her care at Happy House, even more so than for most.
Not only has she kept our family safe and well, she has also used home school to experiment with and develop new ways of teaching and and learning.
Mama Sue has never been afraid of change, embracing it as a challenge. She was born with sharp mind and a caring heart - and at Happy House our children flourish thanks to her.
Thank you Mama for all you do.
We hope you have a wonderful day.

Thursday, 15 October 2020

My elearning lesson, by John

Happy House kid John who has found elearning a huge boost to his progress talked of his experience to youngsters from the community returning to our school. An internet enhanced system of delivering lessons, is being introduced into our classrooms. Class Eight are the first to be back in school after a seven month, pandemic enforced, break, gathered for an assembly. The elearning, introduced whilst home schooling of Happy House family, was explained to them and John was asked to tell how it helped him, resulting in greater understanding of his subjects and improved exam results. He assured them that the teacher and he and the other Happy House family kids were all there to assist their friends as they settled back to school and into the new way of learning.

Wednesday, 14 October 2020

Welcome back to school

Children and parents were welcomed back to Happy House school when we reopened to Class 8 pupils on Monday.
School has been closed since March because of Kenya's response to the Coronavirus pandemic. The Government has changed the academic year accordingly, making this (traditionally the third and final term of a year) the second term. School will close on Christmas Eve. The third term will now mean that young people, from Primary and Secondary who were due to take their national exams next month, will sit their exams in March. During the time school has been close we have discovered and developed new ways of teaching, harnessing the internet to maximum capacity, and by the using the video communications app, Zoom. The children living in our care at Happy house have educationally flourished during this time to the delight and astonishment of our teachers. So successful has this been that Mama Sue has decided bring what we have developed at home into school. On the opening day, parents and their children, who come in from the local community, had the system explained to them.

Tuesday, 13 October 2020

Guidance for young gardeners

There's a whole army of keen young gardeners at Happy House all wanting to dig in and do their bit. Like all children growing up in Kenya , they understand the importance of growing your own crops to feed your family. Even the poorest families will find a little bit of spare land where they can plant maize ready for the rainy season. Our youngsters, who have their own garden plots, gathered in Mama's office to get some advice from Mama and Papa.

Monday, 12 October 2020

School's back in - for some

Two year groups return to school in Kenya this week.

The Government announcement that Primary Class Eight and Secondary Year 4 would returning today to schools, which have been closed since March, has thrown some of guard.

 But with Mama Sue at the helm, Happy House School is ready and looking forward to seeing pupils back in school. 

It's good news for the youngsters in thee year groups as they are due to take their national examinations before the end of the year. Mama Sue tells us more in his video

Sunday, 11 October 2020

Butterly song for Sunday

​Four little flutterbys bring us a lovely performance of Butterfly, Butterfly.

It was their special performance for their Mama Sue at her early birthday party. 

The children were happy and confident to present the song to an audience of family and guests. 

They had been practicing for weeks getting ready for the special day.

Saturday, 10 October 2020

Birthday show for Mama

Children at the Happy House put on a birthday show for Mama Sue who will be celebrating her birthday on October 16. It was an early party, held at Mama and Papa's house in Turtle Bay, and coincided with the arrival of friends from the UK, Angela Lewis and David Paris. There were games, fashion show, food, songs and more and everyone had a brilliant time. In this video Morphin, wearing a coat of many colours, takes on the role of Joseph for a performance of "Any Dream Will Do"

Friday, 9 October 2020

Our girl is doing well

It's now more than a month since Janet, the oldest of our Happy House family, flew the nest. Janet, who had lived in our care since we opened in 2010, is the first of our children to leave home to live independently. She has a job at the Happy House and is living in a little studio apartment a short walk away - furnished with the help of Mama Sue and the the Happy House. She was also able to use some of her nest egg, money donated over the years to her child saving account by her sponsors. Here Janet and Mama Sue give us an update

Thursday, 8 October 2020

Nature's cures come free

Finding the most natural way of dealing with any simple ailments is part of the way our family lives, and thrives, at Happy House. 
The latest addition to our list of remedies are neem leaves. 
Neem, also known as "the tree of forty cures", were planted across Kenya by the Government to make the leaves freely available to its people. Papa heard about it when on a shopping trip he called into the pharmacy to ask for something to help with the spots some of ur teenagers were troubled by. 
 The pharmacist mentioned glycerine and neem, so Papa decided to make them a cream combining the two - with excellent results as we hear on this video.

Wednesday, 7 October 2020

Happy House welcome for visitors from the UK

Welcoming visitors is very special in the tough times when few people are traveling to Kenya for holidays.

But our good friends Angela Lewis and David Paris didn't let coronavirus restrictions and safety compliance put them off. They arrived safely and without disappointment.

They are feeling safe and happy and are impressed with the measures in place to stop the spread of the virus.

Angela from Somerset and David, who lives in Kent, are enjoying catching up with the Mama Sue, Papa Dave and all the Happy House family and spending time with their sponsor children, Esther, David, James , Neema and Abdul.

Mama and Papa were able to show them how our e-learning is working and to see our Zoom relayed lessons in action.

Thank you Angela and David for all you do to support us, enjoy your holiday.

Tuesday, 6 October 2020

Evans in the driving seat

There was a landmark day for Evans when his provisional driving licence arrived. Evans, one of the first children to join our family in 2010, is in his final year at school. He is a huge asset to our family, helping where he can and would, one day, like to manage the Happy House. Learning to drive will be an asset to him in the future and when he had his birthday Mama and Papa promised that Papa would teach him. He's already had some lessons in our compound but now he has a licence he'll be able to learn on the road. Exciting times.

Monday, 5 October 2020

Celebrating World Milk Day

Happy House was delighted to celebrate Worlld School Milk Day by welcoming a guest from the Kenya Dairy Board.

Joyce had traveled from Nairobi to promote the benefits of the school milk programme in the area and Happy House was chosen as one of the places she should visit.

She had sent milk  in advance so all the children could enjoy it while she was there.

Thank you Joyce and the Kenya Dairy Board.

Sunday, 4 October 2020

Song for Sunday

He's got the whole world in His hands is the song chosen by the group of Happy House children singing for you today. This wonderful, uplifting, song of praise is always a favourite. We hope you will enjoy.

Saturday, 3 October 2020

Growing space

Rising prices are one of the effects of the pandemic, and the cost of food has risen in Kenya. This makes feeding our family of 60 children at the Happy House even more expensive for our charity. Mama and Papa have decided that extending the growing space we have in our garden so that we can produce even more of our own food than we already do. As the land is based on coral we first have to dig some out and then import top soil to ensure we have enough depth for crops. Papa Dave tells us more.

Friday, 2 October 2020

Adding up to success

There are all kinds of ways we make learning interesting at Happy House. Using elearning as a major part of delivering home schooling to the children living at Happy House has, as you know, been incredibly successful during the pandemic. But there is still a place for tests to help our children brush up on their knowledge. And to get ready for this week's exams, some of the kids who didn't do so well in their previous examination have been doing both quizzes and tests to help with their progress.

Thursday, 1 October 2020

Teachers get results

One good lesson in life is that you never stop learning! So when our teachers at Happy House received results of their recent examination on the video-conferencing app, Zoom, and the way it works, Mama Sue announced them at a family gathering with all our children present. To their credit, all the teachers performed well!