Sunday, December 19, 2010

two of the older babies and the difference milk can make

Here are two of the older babies who have lived at the orphanage since they were born.  They are now 9 months old or so.  They came right around the time when I was able to start bringing formula up to the orphanage and do some much needed trainings about feeding the babies full strength formula, how much, and how often.  This is sweet Chantal.  She is doing so well! (And loves the bumbo that a friend recently brought out).

This is Benjamin.  He is the 10th child of a local pastor.  His mother died giving birth to him.  I have met his father many times when he has visited his son.  He always is so grateful for the milk that has kept his son alive.  Thank you to all of you who have donated milk and money to buy formula.  It has made a difference in this little boy's life!  He is doing so well, and is a big boy.  (Thanks to my sister-in-law Shauna for this Bumbo!)

When I came to the orphanage 9 months ago, this little boy was the same age as these kiddos are right now.  He was one of 35 kids, most of them not able to walk.  Most days there were 2 mamas to take care of all those kids.  He was getting porridge watered down in water through a bottle three times a day and had been since he was 6 months old.  Before that he was getting watered down formula three times a day.  He was held when he was fed, three times a day.  He rarely cried when I met him.  He couldn't sit, roll, or hold his head up.  I never saw him held the first times I visited.  Since then, we have four new mamas to hold the babies and enough formula for all the children that are malnourished and all those under age one.  Now he is rarely in his crib, except to sleep.  What you give makes a difference!  
Here he is now!  I love this little boy!

More good things to come!

Friday, December 17, 2010

Giving update

I found out today that OFA will no longer accept donations for the work I am doing at the Kaziba orphanage.  Until Tumaini gets started, I don't have a way for anyone to give donations through an organization that can give you a receipt for tax purposes.  If anyone still would like to contribute to the work I am doing at the orphanage, please contact me privately at


The seven (!) newest arrivals and a brief update

It's been awhile!  I have so much on my mind, so many things I would love to write about, both joyful and painful; some of which I can write about, some, I cannot.  But first, I wanted to start with the six newest babies (and one big boy) that have come to Kaziba in the last three months.  I don't have a photo of the very newest little boy who just came, Moses (he is 4 months old), but I have some photos of the other six.  Here they are...

Well,  managed to post some pictures!

Jacob-3 months old.  He came at a small 4 lbs and is doing great!

Nyota ("star" in swahili)-3 months old.  She is a chubby, smiley little girl.

Amani and Isaiah-twin 2 month old boys.  They came at 4 lbs each.  They are hanging in there, but are very vulnerable and small.

Rachel (7 months) and her big brother (2+)-Happy sweet kids who were starving at home after their mother died.

Moses (4 months old)-abandoned in a local hospital after his mother died (I haven't met him yet).

In practical, nitty gritty terms, what this means is that the orphanage is in desperate need for funds for formula.  It takes $80/month to provide EACH baby with formula.  That means they need $480/month in additional funding!  Right now there are 3 other babies up there that have been there since March.  That's 9 babies!  Plus, there are 2 older children (under 18 months old) still receiving formula because of their past levels of malnourishment.  11 babies receiving formula.  At 80$/child/month.  $880/month!  We are about to submit our application for our 501c3, Tumaini.  We hope we are up and running and ready to receive funds in a month.  We are hoping to create a sponsorship program for the children that live in the orphanage at $25/month, with more than one sponsor per child.  This will meet the monthly needs of:  formula, powdered milk for the older children, and the additional staff we have hired.  We are then hoping to raise funds for the school fees of the older children, the remainder of the wall, and other one-time projects.  That's where we are at, it's pretty exciting to look at what could happen!  The reality is right now, though, that I have received no funds this month for the orphanage.  We have enough formula from last months donations to make it through the end of the month.  But that is all I have, and that is the reality for today.