WHERE EVERY CHILD WHO IS DEAF GETS THE CHANCE TO BE HEARD
Kenya Development Fund - working in the present to provide for a future
In the lush green, but impoverished area of Nyanza Province in western Kenya a group of children are struggling to rise above the limitations that their deafness, and the inability of their culture to deal with it, have imposed upon them. The children of the Immanuel Christian School for the Deaf don't, at first glance, have a lot going for them. However, because of the faithful work of Neville Muir and Deaf Ministries International, Wesley Agengo and the fine staff at Immanuel they are finding that opportunities may not always elude them. There is a chance that they can rise above the limitations of their poverty and disability to become valuable, productive members of their community.
Even though the unemployment rate in Kenya is well above 50% and the accommodation for the Deaf and/or Blind culturally is very weak, Headmaster Wesley Agengo and his staff are developing a vision that will open unlimited possibilities for the Deaf in Africa. What they could not dream of before is slowly coming into focus and the possibility of a quality education, vocational and technical training - even the thought of a technical college for the Deaf in Kenya may become a reality.
Immanuel Christian School for the Deaf
Number One in the Nation
Immanuel Christian School for the Deaf has joined the ranks of the best minds in Kenya by virtue of their performance at the recent national exams - Kenya Certificate of Primary Education - where they ranked NUMBER ONE IN THE NATION!
This is a remarkable feat in that this remarkable progress has come in the past five years or so from a point where the school was unranked. Under the direction of Headmaster Wesely Agengo the school has emerged as one of the finest schools in the country for children with special needs. We bless God, and congratulate Wesely and his staff for this remarkable achievement!
This past month, students from the Immanuel Christian School for the Deaf participated in National exams and emerged as the number one Special Needs school in the nation. Pictured left is Evaline, one of the leading students at the school. This is a brilliant child, who composes and performs her own original poetry in which she advocates for the needs of the Deaf in Kenya. Evaline also is a strong student leader at the school taking on responsibilities for leading younger students.
Evaline is an orphan, her Dad and Mom have both died. This brilliant mind may never reach its potential unless she is able to complete her education. Evaline is getting ready to start high school and has no means of raising her tuition and student fees. The Kenya Development Fund is
going to endeavor to make sure this brilliant young lady has every opportunity to develop into the strong leader she can be. We are currently investigating what it will cost Evaline to complete her high school education and then, we are going to investigate what scholarships might be available for her to enroll in and complete her college degree.
The Kenya Development Fund was established by Pastor Michael Gantt and the congregation at AGAPE CHRISTIAN FELLOWSHIP in Brattleboro, Vermont USA for the purpose of financing a plan for sustainable development on behalf of the Immanuel Christian School for the Deaf. The goal of the Fund is to come alongside Deaf Ministries International, the Immanuel Christian School for the Deaf, and the Immanuel Deaf Churches of Kenya to provide a framework for the development of sustainable economic development so that the school, someday, may be entirely self-sufficient - requiring little or no support from outside donors. Pastor Michael Gantt has been working with the headmaster and school board to develop a plan to locate the school entirely on their own property, to house the children in safe and inviting environs, and to educate them in comfortable and well supplied classrooms.
We are investing in the lives of children who, without help, have little to no chance of becoming productive members of their community. They will in most cases be condemned to a life of ignorance and beggary unable to pursue the dreams that all children have. Kenya Development Fund is seeking contributors who expect a return on their investment. No, not a return of capital by which they can enrich themselves; but the kind of return that can only be experienced in the Kingdom of Heaven in which the one who has gives to the one who has nothing and the God of Heaven multiplies the return to both in joy and spiritual blessings that cannot be measured in dollars and cents. The joy that comes from seeing a child's eyes the first time he realizes he can actually read the words on a page in front of him. The joy that comes from a young man who comes to the realization that despite his disability, he has abilities that can life him above anything that will hold him down. He can get a job, have a family and support them, contribute to his community and enjoy the respect and friendship of his peers.
Speaking for Those Who Cannot Speak for Themselves.
The Children of the Immanuel Christian School for the Deaf
When God commands us in Matthew 28:19 to make disciples, you can rest assured that Kenya Development Fund is doing just that! Pastor Mike Gantt has a passion and a heart for the deaf people of Kenya that is undeniable.
As a true family man, he believes in family legacy and the people of Kenya are also his family. The self-sustaining plan that he has put in place at the Immanuel Christian School for the Deafis powerful and effective. He is bringing everlasting hope and the love of Christ to a community that would otherwise have become beggars.
Pastor Mike is a man of integrity and a man of God, teaching the “least of these” that they are loved by and belong to the Lord. He brings them confidence and a relationship with Jesus. He radiates the love of Christ!
Supporting the Kenya Development Fund should be top priority as we strive to serve in the Kingdom. Pastor Mike, we can never thank you enough for the labor of love and support you provide on behalf of our Lord Jesus Christ!
Craig and Dianne Reynolds
The Least of These, Inc
“The level of service at Agape Christian Fellowship - Kenya Development Fund is fantastic. Everything Michael Gantt and his volunteers have done have been for the children of this amazing school!”
When Sandy and I visited the school we were both so blessed to have met and spent time with these children . We fell in love with them . These children have so little, yet their attitude is one of gratitude. They have great needs for the same things we take for granted , Things like a comfortable and safe place to sleep, a variety of good healthy food each day . These are the type of things that the Kenya Development Fund is trying to bring to these children along with helping and teaching them how to become independent so they may have the same chance in life as others. God bless these Children.
George and Sandy Handy
The Kenya Development Fund (KDF) provides a variety of critical resources for the Immanuel Christian School for the Deaf, in Ringa, Kenya. They have proven their commitment to use funding to develop God given skills and talents an otherwise outcast group of individuals, the young deaf and hard of hearing population of Kenya.
On a mission trip in October 2008, KDF provided the funds to bring newer teaching materials to reinvigorate the faculty with a fresh excitement. These teachers, rare because of their professional skills and a lack of close proximity to others trained to do the same, do not have a wide network of professional development for discussion and workshops to bolster their training. Despite the fact that it seemed to be the “norm” for them to not to have adequate materials and technology from which to teach, they functioned each day knowing that Christ was their most valuable resource for successful teaching! KDF funding supports these dedicated Christ followers.
God’s work has always been about restoration. Our team ministered to the students by repairing multiple torn uniforms due to the physical nature of getting the attention of a deaf child. We spent time playing with the students to give time to the teachers to rest. We assisted the adjunct staff with repairs to buildings and gave some basic medical care. We set up an imaginative shoe measuring devise and, with KDF funds, we were able to purchase shoes and socks for the entire student body and staff. We also were able to procure new mattresses to somewhat relieve the overcrowded sleep accommodations in the cramped dormitories. The staff told me multiple times how encouraged they were to have us share their burden, for these children.
KDF funding supports a long-term aspect for these students’ education. It not only supplies the physical resources needed to maintain sustainability of the school there, but it offers training to older students to learn legitimate marketable skills. This positive impact brings hope for the deaf population to have productive lives in Kenya.
Am glad to write to you this Morning in reference to Pastor Gantt's efforts in supporting different projects on behalf of our school in Kenya. Through Pastor Gantt, a team came from the U.S. 2 years ago which brought Christmas gifts to the children. They equipped our school with mattressses,blankets, installed cooking stoves, painted dormitories & fixed broken window glases. He has helped sponsor several projects includg our Poultry Project. Last year he sent us a very valuable consignmnt of medicines which were distributed among the Deaf and poor in many areas of Kenya.
Wesley Agengo, Headmaster
Immanuel Christian School for the Deaf