By Fred Hegele, Board of Directors
Today is the half-way point on this journey. My goodness, have we already achieved half of our mission? God knows more about our calendar than our best-laid plans. Our time in Kenya is an apt reminder that God makes the plans.
Today we had a plan, but this morning on the way to the Imara House, guess what? We had a flat tire, or in Kenyan vernacular, a “puncture.” Frankly, we did not have time for a “puncture.” There was a matatu parked close by, and the driver was quick to offer his assistance in changing our tire. He was so helpful and soon we were on our way.
On with our plans for the day. Shortly after we arrived at Imara House, Carol received a phone call. Within minutes, Carol and Sicily, our staff social worker, headed for the courthouse. The judge had a new case that could be solved, in his point of view, by sending a young teenage pregnant girl to Imara House today (it’s God’s schedule, not ours!).
By noon, Carol and Sicily were waiting outside the courtroom to be summoned before the judge to explain why the girl in this case does not meet the Imara criteria. By some miracle, the head of child services and the judge quickly determined that this case needs to be resolved between the parents and the teenager, rather than an assignment to the Imara House. Clearly, Carol has developed some friendships and established some credibility within the Kenyan authority and that in the final analysis, common sense will prevail some of the time.
Next we had a meeting planned with Brian and Sophy, two of our Kenyan Board members to discuss the Imara Village project. We came to agreement on the process forward for the main building, with construction to start within six months. We discussed the need for a project manager on site and developed a plan for recruiting. As it turns out, a major business nearby announced some cutbacks yesterday and we expect some good people to be in the job market (God will provide).
Pastor Robinson arrived, and we moved into the first board of directors meeting of the new Imara International-Kenya NGO. (Director Beatrice lives in Nairobi, and we hope to connect with her next week.) We have a great board of directors. The discussion included several Imara Village and organization items, and we shared information about Imara history and core values. It was another step forward.
Carol’s friend Claire, from the British military base, trained Rose and Sophie in icing decorating this morning. They are developing some wonderful artistic skills. Thank you, Claire.
Kristine organized a tie-dying project with the Imara family today, as Wednesday is Skills Day. The dyed shirts will incubate overnight, before the big rinse tomorrow. Kristine’s hands look like a permanent rainbow. The moms and kids are excited to see if their shirts look as colorful as Kristine’s hands.
The excitement for the day continued at Imara House this afternoon when one of the doors became bolted accidentally with no one on the bolt side of the door! After a couple of hours of trying unsuccessfully, Carol was summoned with her magical tools from the kitchen to unbolt the door.