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Louisa (34) Project manager at KCH January 2011-2013
“Through volunteering and serving those less fortunate, and meeting some of the most amazing people in the world, my time in Kenya transformed my life and I am grateful for the opportunity.”
Louisa, 34, has invaluable and insightful experience and memories to share from her 2 years working with KCH as project manager from January 2011.
“My mum had been involved with the charity and was extremely passionate about the projects in Kenya. When she died in 2008 I wanted to honour her memory by raising money and awareness of the projects. When the opportunity was then given to me to work in Kenya, it was the perfect way for me to see how the money I had raised would be spent and to further help the charity and pay homage to my mum’s memory.”
Louisa’s extended time with KCH in Kenya gave her particular insight into how KCH is establishing its role in the wider community through raised awareness and becoming a respected institution via the small business model. She saw the full positive impact of the house structure on the children’s development.
“I think the house unit structure, with consistent house mothers and aunts is great for the children as it gives them the closest thing to a real family structure and consistent parent figures present in their lives.”
“ KCH in Kenya, along with SOS Children’s Villages, have really changed the orphanage model with the house unit structure and I think this has made orphanages in Kenya generally higher quality places for children.
I think the small business model which KCH has with Kelvinloaf, Kelvincraft, the café and other businesses also allows it to be a respected and protected place in the community and this also raises awareness of the organization, which both draws in more funding, and ensures that people know where to bring abandoned/orphaned children.”
“I also think JGA is great for the children as the school is very supportive of their unique needs as orphaned or abandoned children, and able to liaise closely with KCH management, house mothers and social work to ensure each child has a personal educational and development plan developed for them.”
“I treasure all my memories from my time at KCH but in particular, taking the children to record a song for Ann’s birthday at recording studios in Nairobi was very special, as the kids were so excited to be there and hear themselves recorded at the end of it.
I also took the kids to a Christmas party and day of fun at a private bowling club in Karen. The club had pulled out all the stops to give the kids a Christmas party with food, Santa, presents, games and music and the kids absolutely loved it so this was also a special day.”
"My time working at Balcraig in Kenya absolutely transformed my life and my whole career path, from working as a journalist to moving into this field full time, it's a decision I will never regret"
I saw in Balcraig an organization which is truly changing lives for the better and it inspired me to want to do more to help the vulnerable in the world. I moved to Kenya not too long after the death of my mother and my time there 100 percent allowed me time to heal from that loss also, so on a personal level, the value of volunteering was transformative and quite invaluable to my life.”
“Do it. It will change your life.”