SHARE has traditionally sponsored orphans only up to the point of graduation from high school. However, in a country with a very high poverty rate and orphans with little or no resources, there is a need to give these individuals a further chance at success. As we reported last year, while only 11 percent of students who take the university entrance exams in Kenya are accepted, last year 56 percent of SHARE sponsored orphans taking the exam were accepted to university. While we do not have the results of this year’s exams, SHARE has 31 students who are graduating high school this spring/summer.
There are two basic avenues for them to follow upon graduation if they want to avoid slipping into the unending cycle of poverty. They can attend University or vocational school. Those with strong entrance exam scores, need our help for sure in their first year. All students must come up with their own means of paying Tuition, Room and Board for that year which costs between one and four thousand dollars, depending on the school and its location. After the first year there are government loans available for those Freshman with decent grades, to carry them to completion. Vocational school, for those not going to university, is about six hundred dollars a year for tuition and is typically only a two-year program.
If you sponsor an orphan who is graduating from high school this year, we will be reaching out to you in the July timeframe to ask you to please consider assisting them further. By that time, we hope to know which Universities have accepted our students and for others which vocational schooling choices they would like to make, allowing us to better project first year costs. As noted below in our Sponsor Highlight, undertaking this additional sponsorship can make life even more meaningful for both your sponsored orphan and you.MEDICAL NEWS
Share continues its medical programs to help the underserved communities in which our orphans live and go to school. SHARE ensures annual medical checkups for the sponsored orphans and operates an annual dental clinic. As we recently noted, SHARE has begun a mental health program in cooperation with the Ministries of Health and Education to evaluate and assist the children with respect to any mental health issues. For children who are orphans, living in poverty, this is an important resource.
INFLATION IS NOT LIMITED TO THE U.S.
As we all struggle with the impact of inflation, please keep in mind that the impacts are not limited to the United States. Kenya has also been hit with a steep rise in costs. Perhaps more significantly, the war in Ukraine has begun to seriously impact supplies of wheat and all food costs in Kenya. Share has not yet received the figures on anticipated increases in the cost for our sponsored orphans, but we anticipate they will increase this coming year and we may be forced to increase our sponsor fess for the first time in a number of years.
SPONSOR HIGHLIGHT DAN AND ELLYN COHEN
We asked Dan and Ellyn Cohen if they would mind if we highlighted them in the SHARE newsletter and if they could tell us about their sponsorship experience. Along with “yes” they told us the following about their sponsorship of Beldine for ten years, since she was a primary school student.
Beldine continues to email us and send us photos on Facebook. When we first “met her” she was a shy child. Now, we see from her communication that she is confidant, happy, and has many friends.During the course of our lives, we have spent money on many things. But rarely did we get as much satisfaction as we have gotten by sponsoring Beldine. It is a pleasure to be able to continue to pay for her college education. We would definitely encourage other sponsors to do the same.”
When Beldine learned that we were highlighting Dan and Ellyn Cohen’s contribution she wrote to a SHARE Board Member and said: “Honestly words alone can’t express my gratitude for everything that Share Program through my sponsor, Ellyn Cohen has done in my life. Special appreciation to Ellyn, she has been the light in my dark world, she is the reason behind my bright smile today. I really thank her very much for giving me life, the best gift ever, EDUCATION. It’s still my vow, to always make her proud.“
SHARE is always looking for additional sponsorships. While 31 students are graduating from high school this year, we have a list of 42 new young people who need sponsorship. If you can manage to sponsor a child or even add another sponsorship, your help will be greatly appreciated.
SHARE Africa recently put together a short video from two graduates of the SHARE orphan program which we think can provide some insight into the benefits of the program. We love hearing their stories and how they benefited from the SHARE SOS Program! Click on the image below to watch the video.
We are excited to announce the dates for our 2022 Golf Outing. We hope you will save the date and attend our annual golf outing and dinner on September 19, 2022. Please mark your calendars! Details to follow.