Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Volunteering at Red Rose

Hi! My name is Clare. I am an American student from St. Lawrence University volunteering at Red Rose. I teach Class 2 with Ms. Rose, a compassionate young teacher who really cares about the students. She and the rest of the staff put so much effort into educating and supporting the kids. I’ve been here for four weeks and every day has been wonderful!Most mornings we begin by playing a few games of Tic Tac Toe, Go Fish, or Hangman--in English and Swahili--to get the kids ready to learn. Then we progress to some lessons in English, Math, or Social Studies. The kids especially like going up to the blackboard to answer individual problems. They're been great about teaching me new Swahili every day, and their enthusiasm has created great opportunities for us to talk about different cultures.Later in the morning we have uji--Kenyan porridge--and I usually read a couple of stories. The kids love Curious George and Dr. Seuss! I've been teaching a lot of art lately, because the children really enjoy expressing themselves through drawing and painting. Yesterday we painted watercolor pictures... and the children ended up painting each other! After art we usually go outside for some free time and play kickball, football, marbles, and jump rope. It's always hectic!

After lunch we have computer time. The kids love spending time in the computer lab; we've been playing games and practicing typing almost every day. I brought a "Mr. Bean" dvd in last week as a treat and it was a huge success! The kids also like dressing up and playing with my camera... one day I painted their faces and they put stickers everywhere and pretended to be Masai warriors. Afterwards, we had fun looking at the pictures in the computer lab.It's been such a pleasure to teach at Red Rose. I've been lucky to work with the staff and get to know such bright and enthusiastic kids... I will miss them all so much when I leave Kenya in December-- I can't wait to come back next year! Asante sana, marafiki!

Friday, December 5, 2008

Christmas Celebration Party at Red Rose

Today we had a very wonderful day in which we celebrated the first ever Christmas party at the Red Rose School. All the children who were able to attend this celebration that took place after a two-week summer vacation learning enrichment camp at the school had a lot of fun (yes, December is the summer time in Kenya). We did this party for the kids because to some of them this could be the only chance they have to enjoy themselves this December holiday season, with people paying great attention to make them feel special.

We had a lot of activities including singing, dancing, and games. Our kindergarten and grade one students performed a nativity play for the whole school. Food was in plenty, including candy, juice, beef pilau, kachumbari, and chapati. Megan McDonald, (our new Red Rose Ambassador currently at the University of Nairobi as a Rotary Club Fellow) was our Santa Claus for the day, giving the kids the presents that she and her friends came over with.

The wonderful day of celebration came to an end late in the afternoon, but the kids still did not want to go home. What a day we all had!! Asante sana to the Children of Kibera Foundation for the ideas and funding support that made possible the wonderful two-week learning enrichment camp and this special day for the kids here at Red Rose. More than 70 children participated in the camp.
Click on the pictures to the right to view the three different photo albums from the Christmas Party and the Learning Enrichment Camp.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Red Rose School Featured on Voice of America TV

Red Rose School Offers Hope to Kibera Slum Orphans
25 November 2008

In Nairobi, Kenya, thousands of orphaned children in the Kibera slums do not go to school. They simply cannot afford the fees and have little hope of a better life. But thanks to a small group of donors, including some in the United States, some children will realize their dream of an education. 

Eleven-year-old Brian Amurama lives with his grandmother, Elizabeth Aluda, in a single room in the Kibera slums of Nairobi. They share it with Brian's four-year-old sister Tulen, six-year-old brother Bradley and an adult relative. 

Brian starts his day by helping his younger siblings get ready for school. He serves them breakfast, usually just a cup of black tea, before they start the long walk to school.

It takes the children approximately 20 minutes to navigate the busy morning streets to get to school. 

Brian's hopes for a good education depend on a small private school established in 1998 by a retired Kenyan school teacher.

Protase Buluma is the deputy director at Red Rose Nursery and Children Center. He says the school is like a drop in the ocean, but it is giving hope to these kids.

"Specifically,” he says, “ we cater for the needs of the orphaned children in the slums, who have nobody to take care of them. So far we have 40 orphans out of a population of 89 kids."

Brian's parents died in 2004. That's when he and his little brother and sister went to live with their grandmother. Elizabeth Aluda is among hundreds of thousands of Kenyans who live in extreme poverty in Kibera, on the south side of the capital Nairobi. 

Despite their circumstances, the children have reason for hope. They are enthusiastic and eager to learn through the various teaching methods the teachers have developed at Red Rose School. 

A United Nations report says many orphans in Kibera end up on the streets with no formal education or family support system. With time they become part of the rising statistics of crime related deaths, sexual abuse and the widening cycle of poverty. For the few who go to the Red Rose school, they get more than reading and writing there. 

Red Rose School Deputy Director Protase Buluma says "Where they would have lacked education they now receive it here. Where they would have lacked nutrition, they get it here. Where they would have lacked love and hope, they are now getting it here."

Red Rose runs its programs with the support of a group of private donors. Ken Okoth is one of them. He grew up in poverty in the slums of Kibera, but now teaches at the Potomac School, a private institution in northern Virginia outside Washington. 

Okoth says his personal life experience motivates him to help the kids of Kibera: "I can't just sit back and think, `I made it, am successful, I will move on with life.' I know at every stage, somebody gave something to me and I can never pay them back for the help they gave me."

Okoth has enlisted the help of fellow teachers and students at his school in Virginia to raise funds for the children in Kenya. Some of the teachers and students visited Red Rose School late last year to deliver education materials, including lap-tops and books.

Red Rose school is a small oasis of hope in an expansive landscape of poverty and despair . Many residents of Kibera say they hope that Kenya's government will allocate more resources to ensure no child lacks education and opportunities to advance.

Okoth says this will change the future of the children: "Being poor is just a circumstance where you start in life, but it is not your destiny and it can change."

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Children of Kibera Foundation's New Video

The Red Rose School is a project of the Children of Kibera Foundation, a 501c3 tax exempt grassroots educational charity based in Washington DC. Watch the new video below to learn more about our story, our founder, the children we serve, and how you can join our vision for the future.

Click here to visit the website of the Children of Kibera Foundation for more information or to make an online donation.

Friday, October 24, 2008


Megan MacDonald is pursuing an MA in Development Studies at the University of Nairobi as a Rotary Scholar. Before she came to Kenya she was approached by Redhill Elementary School in Tustin Santa Ana, CA) to find a pen pal partnership school for their elementary classes (Grade 2 and 4). She was happy to hear that she could be able to get that at Red Rose, and the students and teachers here can not wait to keep in touch with the newfound friends in the USA. Megan brought with her 49 letters which the Red Rose students will be responding to. I wish to welcome the Redhill Elementary school to our growing community of friends and also welcome other schools to join us. ASANTE SANA!! Megan looking forward to working with you.

Saturday, October 18, 2008


Yesterday we had a second visit from Katherine Blackwood, she had visited Red Rose last year with the her schoolmates from Potomac School. This year she is doing volunteer work here in Kenya and she could not let her stay go without a visit at Red Rose. The students and the teachers were very happy when they heard she would be visiting them. She brought school supplies with her and also shared her time with students. We are very grateful for the visit ASANTE SANA KAT!!!

Tuesday, October 7, 2008


These Activities on Air helps children to understand that there's air around them, be it Indoors or Outdoor.Children realise that they need air for their daily life.


1.Children have realised being surrounded by air, by; a) breathing In and Out. b) Using fans.

2. Children have gained the experience of air occupying empty containers by dipping bottles and containers in water to produce bubbles.

3. Children also learnt that balloons, flags and propellers are blown by air.


1. Air helps some musical instruments to produce sound by blowing, e.g. flutes and whistles.

2. Air also contributes to the blowing of balloons which decorates different celebrations.

3. Air helps most machines to move or work.


1. Children have learnt that MOVING AIR is called WIND.

2. AIR is LIFE.

Monday, September 29, 2008


As children grow they use manipulative activities as a medium of expressing their reaction to their reaction to their physical and environment .Manipulative activities involves the use of fingers and hands.Creative expressions is one way of giving them a controlled and accepted way of expressing their feeling and emotions.Children for example may express their feelings of anger by pounding,squeezing clay ,they may express their disappointment through hammering e.t.c .children will be able to ,awaken their creative talents,develop co-operation and control of their small muscles ,develop eye hand co-ordination ,develop their observation skills ,gain experience in handling different materials and relate to their daily life ,relax and enjoy themselves.


This is one of the topics learnt in 3rd grade syllabus “Measurement” a sub-topic “mass”.
Despite the fact that Mathematics is a theoretical subject it is also a practical subject. This is a topic that enables learners to recognize, identify and use kilogram as a unit of measuring mass.

Practical lesson in Mathematics ensures the pupils as they grow up to face the out side world after school have gained skills that will help them be productive members of the society.

The beam balance assists them to understand the logic behind which is heavier than, lighter than or same mass as the other using 1 kg.
Apart from teaching class work we also teach these children the general knowledge they need to know as they grow up. This includes cleanliness, discipline and how to take care of themselves. This helps them because they come from different backgrounds e.g some are orphans left alone to care for themselves.

Friday, September 26, 2008

St. Lawrence University KSP Fall 2008 Semester Students at Red Rose

Today we hosted four students from St. Lawrence University as part of their Kenya Semester Program Urban Studies Component. The students, Clare Jerome, Jessica Ziegler, Jane Connolly and Drew Pynchon chose to come and do their community work at Red Rose and we are very happy to host them. They spent their time interacting with the Red Rose children outside the classroom and teaching in some classes. Clare Jerome will be spending two more weeks at Red Rose and the children are so happy they can not wait for her to start. We always encourage people who are in Nairobi to visit the school and share their time with the children at Red Rose. We are very grateful for the visit and we are looking forward to hosting more visitors. ASANTE SANA and KARIBU to RED ROSE!!! Below are some pictures

For more pictures click here to see our picasa album.

Friday, September 19, 2008


Red-rose is a beehive of activities. From the babies' dandiest things to more serious work by the upper classes. This is class two, all set to take you to an imaginary visit through Kenya's rich natural heritage. This is depicted in the choice of art work in class, they always choose to draw wild animals, no doubt they love it.
Besides general knowledge, we instill good values in them. come meet them and see for yourself. Though they come from different walks of life, you won't notice their differences because here, they are children of the same mother,"Children of Kibera Foundation"
They are intrigued with the many play materials provided by different groups that visit our school but they are limited by lack of a playground. meet class two with their teacher Rose!!

Creative Activities.

They are medium of communication through which children express themselves.
manipulative activities is one of the medium of express because it involves the use of fingers and hands.
Modelling is the art of shaping an images from various soft materials.
Through modelling children should be able to:-
A waken their talents.
Develop co-operation and control of their small muscles.
Develop eye-hand co-ordination.
Develop their imagination.
Develop their observation skills.
Gain self confidence ,independence and self reliance.
Relax and enjoy themselves.

Friday, September 12, 2008


Mrs Emmily Mudavadi, a teacher at Red Rose Children's Centre in Kibera teaches her pre-unit (kindergarten class) pupils how to play music the recorders. The recorders were delivered this summer by Children of Kibera Foundation board members who visited Red Rose, as a donation from the Potomac School in McLean, Va. Thank you!


Hello friends of Red Rose Class Four,
how are you in America?

In these photos, Teacher Charles is conducting a mathematics lesson with his pupils on the topic of time. I am working hard to assist those learners who are experiencing difficulties in Mathematics and English. To conclude, here is an artistic piece by one of the class four pupils called Diana. The artwork reflects scenes from the coastal part of Kenya, showing the kind of shelter in which the people live and the type of crops that are found there.
Thanks a lot. Goodbye, Tr. Charles (and the Class Four Pupils)