Life is good, even in the face of adversity. You just have to hold onto hope.
My name Is Phineas Kaimenyi. I am a Kenyan and I live in in the remote mountains of Meru County in Kenya. I am currently a form three student, known to you in the USA as a Junior. I attend Nanyuki Boys High School and am the first born in a family of three.
When I was in class two my father left home and went away. No one in my family – including my mother has any idea of where he went. Honestly, I miss my dad every minute of my life. This made my life seem hopeless until God proved to me that He could work in a way different from what men think – by the time you are through with reading this, I assure you, you will agree with me that God has been amazing in my life.
Since that time, my life became hectic – my mum could not support us with our basic necessities – I know it pained her to see us suffer but she had no means. Have you ever slept on an empty stomach for a day or two? This was part of our growing up. Two days hungry was normal to us, but it hurt.
My mum went out seeking a job that at least would give her something to put on the table but do you think anyone cared to know what she had been through? The only job available for my dear mum was to sell drugs! Honestly, this pained me so much since, other than just selling the drugs which I knew was not what any one in their right would want their mother to do, it involved associating with people of all sorts – even drunk men! It always pained me to see my mum live such a life but there was nothing I could do – to tell you the truth it just made me feel miserable and so hopeless.
Despite the effort that my mum had in this business, it was not well paying at all. The money she got was not even enough to cater for our food. We could not afford to buy clothes. We felt like we were just shadows of life.
Though I love school and I knew how desperate I was for education, I could not afford the fees. I wanted to study and change my family – I wanted to feel some hope but there was none!
I struggled every day to find the coins demanded by school so that I could attend class. I struggled this way until I finished std 8 (8th grade). Many were the days that I failed and had to exchange my desire for books to work in someone’s fields: digging, planting, weeding…from sun up to sun down and yes, hungry. But, no matter my absences, at the end of the year in std 8, I sat for my class eight exams. Here in Kenya, the marks you get on these exams qualify you to join high school. By God’s grace I attained 320 marks! This was a miracle considering the many times I never went to school – and even when I did, it was on an empty stomach. I qualified to join a good school in Kenya but this was not even heard of in my family. Getting to class 8 itself was an achievement. I desperately wanted to join high school but where could I get the fees? How could I even tell my mum that a school principal somewhere demanded that I pay fees? I only made a prayer to God, though by then I didn’t even believe He existed.
I confronted my Primary school head teacher about my trouble in raising the required fees. He was touched by my story and suggested that I go and look for this man who happened to work with an American based organization which sponsored needy students. The man’s name was Julius. I was desperate and would not give up until I found him! Funny enough, success shined during our meeting and he invited me to repeat std 8 in hopes that I might get a sponsor within that year. If we could manage to secure a sponsor, I would have hope to continue my education through their support and love. This I agreed to without much struggle at all. I worked tooth and nail to perform at my level best! I knew where I came from. I needed to believe in change.
Talk of miracles happening!!!!!
I was introduced to Michelle Stark who, since then, has proven to be my heaven sent. She gave me blankets and soaps, toothbrushes and toothpaste, pencils and so much I could not believe my eyes. But most important, Michelle believed in my story. She saw something special in me and told my story to Patrick Ormsby, who became my beloved sponsor.
I was happy to be sponsored by Pat. This was a miracle and I could not ask for more. My hopeless life was now transforming before my own eyes. I could now confidently talk of a brighter future – of achieving my dreams – of changing my family status.
My dearest, my Mum Michelle, not only helped me to get a sponsor but also has been my solace and inspiration. She always makes sure that I am comfortable at school and even at home. She has actually found me a better place to live away from my drunken mum. This has increased my concentration in school.
My Loving dad Pat has been so good to me. He is always ready to listen to me. I take him as a special gift given to me by our Heavenly Father. What a wonderful dad!!!
My life experiences are teaching me the importance of giving back to others: helping them when they need help – giving them hope since I believe that there is always hope for us.
I thank God for the good opportunity He gave me. I am using it to my maximum by working hard every day so that I will reach my destination. When I start earning, I will give back to the poor, helping them as Matanya’s Hope is helping me.
I would love to tell everyone who is making sacrifices to support Matanya’s Hope that their sacrifice is changing the life of an individual who might never have had a way out of hunger, hopelessness and despair. That coin that you donate may be just what someone here in Kenya has been asking God for.
Special thanks to Matanya’ Hope and all who have been supporting this beautiful work that God started in Michelle.