This year has been different to all the previous ones because it was the first time we made grant applications and were successful with them! We were given a grant for four workshops and another grant for running costs until the end of the year. This meant we were able to do forward planning for a change and could do more than ever before!
From January, we continued to sponsor 14 of our teenagers through secondary education while two were awarded full scholarships by Equity Bank and another was supported by her local church. Two of our older boys also started 2 year mechanics courses funded by us.
Our library has got all the necessary school text books in it and the teenagers are using it for their studies. Before exams they go there in small groups to revise and borrow books the rest of the time.
In the April school holidays we held a 10 day residential theatre & art therapy workshop, followed by a four day music workshop with more than 40 of our youngster. In May there was a two day sharing workshop for the guardians. We held a sexual health workshop in August school holidays and a six day counselling workshop for our teenage boys.
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Despite facing some challenges at the start of this year we are continuing to support our teenagers through secondary school and those doing vocational courses with money we have managed to fundraise from family and friends. We're in the process of making grant applications to ensure we can continue our work into the future. Sad news this month is that one of our grandmothers has passed away leaving behind the two siblings she was caring for, we will do our best to support them as they go through this difficult time.
We are currently supporting 15 teenagers through the third term of secondary school, with two more being sponsored by Equity Bank. In August we ran two sexual health workshops, one for our guardians and members of the wider community, and the other for all our teenagers 11yrs+. This was in collaboration with the ABCs of Sex Education who did a fantastic job, bringing a great sense of humour into an otherwise serious topic. We have also run four more successful workshops this year in April, May and August. Theatre, art, music and counselling through this medium is having a transformative effect on all our children. They are noticeably less depressed, more confident, and building strong relationships with their peers and guardians.
This month we're holding two workshops during the Easter holidays for our youngsters - one is a 10 day residential theatre and art therapy workshop and the other is a four day music workshop. We're excited to be able to give the children this opportunity to learn and grow in such creative spaces!