Laura Vasconcellos, Founder and President of the organization, and Carolina Vasconcellos, the Project Manager, travelled to Kenya on March 20th, where they stayed for one month in order to visit the children of the Wanalea Children’s Home, and to continue the implementation of ADDHU’s development and humanitarian projects in this country, namely in the area of Kisii.

With the help and cooperation of our volunteers, supporters, and the students from the high schools of Amarante and Vila Franca de Xira, and with the support of Renova, we collected more than 2500 packs of sanitary pads to be distributed to the school girls and teenagers of the slums of Nairobi (kitui Ndogo), the IDP camps in Naivasha as well as the rural area of Kisii. The distribution was a success, having beneficiated more than 1000 women and young girls who, otherwise, wouldn’t have access to a proper hygiene and would miss around 2 weeks of classes per month because of this problem.

As usual, we visited the Kitui Ndogo slum where we also distributed sanitary pads and met the 6 children supported by ADDHU through the Wanalea Foster Parents Program. We were happy to see they are healthy, growing day by day, and their school results have been improving. We also met the families of the children who kindly thanked ADDHU and the Foster Parents for this precious support that allowed them to significantly improve their living conditions. It is indeed remarkable the difference we all have been making in these children’s lives! Unfortunately, in Kitui Ndogo, there are still over 60 children that need urgent support and assistance, many of who are HIV positive. You can help these children, as well as the children of our Children’s Home, who also need more support, by becoming a Foster Parent! For more information, please contact:

While we were in Kenya, we also travelled to the rural area of Kisii, where we collected some important information and data for our Water Project to provide the Kitutu community with a safe water supply system. The women and children of this community have to walk more than 6 km per day to have access to water, among many other problems caused by the lack of safe drinking water sources and basic sanitation systems, such as illnesses (typhoid and cholera). We distributed some sanitary pads to the teenage mothers of the community and to the students of the local primary and secondary school. We had a meeting with the teenage mothers in order to discuss the establishment of the Tumaini Centre, a small tailoring school and workshop for the young mothers to be trained and learn a skill, and have a source of income making school uniforms, a very successful business in Kenya.

Once again, we talked to the women of the Kitutu community about the Female Genital Mutilation. After three years of counseling and awareness campaigns, the first signs of the beginning of a positive change within the community are starting to appear: a committee was created to discuss the end of FGM in the community. ADDHU considers this first step a real victory in the fight for the eradication of FGM, specially in a region where the more than 95% of young girls are submitted to this cruel practice and serious violation of their basic rights.

Our trip to Kisii had a very special moment... We are happy to announce that we have rescued another little girl from poverty and hunger. Her name is Hilda, she is 4 years old and she comes from Kisii. She is an orphan, as her parents died from HIV related complications, and she was under the care of her grandmother who asked for our help and assistance. Hilda is now living in the Wanalea Children’s Home, under the care of ADDHU, safe and happy, and she will not be submitted to the FGM.

Hilda is the youngest sister of Dolivine, an 8-year-old girl who was rescued by ADDHU in August 2009. They were so happy to see each other and to be together again! It was a magical moment, full of emotions! And some tears... Hilda arrived to our Centre with very old, damaged and dirty clothes, with no shoes, and starving! She doesn’t speak English or Swahili yet, only the local dialect... She had never been to school, or slept in a bed... She had never eaten more than once per day, and she had never been to the doctor... Now, she is safe and very happy, she quickly blended in and made many friends in the Centre. She is a healthy, sweet girl full of energy! Welcome to the family Hilda!

A month ago, Damaris, another little girl from our Children’s Home, had to have an emergency surgery due to an acute appendicitis, a condition that can be life-threatening if not properly and quickly treated. Fortunately, the surgery was a success and Damaris has already fully recovered. Thanks to ADDHU and the unconditional support of the Foster Parents and Volunteers, Damaris received the medical treatment she needed in such a situation, which wouldn’t have been the case had she still be living in the streets of a slum...

During our daily visits to the Centre, we verified that all the children are healthy and doing very well. All of them got good results in their school exams. They received letters, photos and gifts from their Foster Parents, and we could once again witness how the children love and care for their Foster Parents, whom they have never met… And how the Foster Parents love and care for these children whom they have also never met or seen!

We received the visit of the Portuguese company Novabase, who donated 6 computers to the Centre. This generous gift will allow us to implement an IT training program for the children, significantly increasing their future professionalization chances and expectations. Thank you Novabase!

Thanks to the generosity and dedication of the volunteer Susana Barbas, we took the children to the Nairobi National Park, where they had the opportunity to interact and learn many fun facts about the wildlife in Kenya. We all had a great time!

We also took the children to see Tim Burton’s “Alice in Wonderland”. It was their first time at a movie theater. We were all very curious to see how they would react to the magic of the cinema. And a magical moment it was! The children were fascinated by the big screen and all the fantasy of the movie. And we were very proud of them as they behaved very well. And they loved the movie experience, which obviously included hot dogs, popcorn and sodas! The 4th of April, we celebrate Easter in the Centre by hiding chocolate eggs in the garden, a Portuguese Easter tradition. The joy and happiness of the children were truly contagious!

They are happy children, very happy! And this wouldn’t be possible without your support. With your help, we saved 25 children from the streets and from poverty... We gave them shelter, food, health, education, a home where they feel safe and protected, love and care... With your help, we gave 25 children a family!

We are counting on you to help us save many more!

Thank you! Asante Sana!
Carolina Vasconcellos
Project Manager

  • ADDHU in Kenya March - April 2010ADDHU in Kenya March - April 2010