Saturday, March 8, 2014

Postscript Note: the Dynamic Due

Two unsung heroes of WISER are founder, Sherryl Broverman, and Carrie Arndt of J&J. Sherryl turned an area of study, a theory and an idea into a reality. She works tirelessly on behalf of these girls and has been named an honorary "daughter of the soil" by Muhuru Bay.  

Through her son, Mike, Carrie started out as an ambassdor to J&J for sanitary products and now as a board member and major fundraiser, she breathes life into WISER with all the love, sweat and tears of any mom. 

They bring us together, bring us along and organize us (as best they can). We love you and thank you on behalf of the girls and everyone you've allowed into this gift of WISER. 

Pictured: Dr. Sherryl Broverman of Duke University, founder and currently chair of the board, Carrie Arndt of J&J, board member, Madeleine Fackler, board member. 

Until Next Year...

As is the tradition, I am signing off the blog from the Fairview Hotel in Nairobi. It's a beautiful night and we are ready to head home. 

The WISER theme I chose when the girls greeted us was LOVE. Kenyan people are so affectionate and loving with one another and they extended that love to us. As we left today we waved "I love you and I'll miss you" while blowing kisses to the girls. 

I hope that even in a small way through this blog you got a sense of who they are and what they fight for. Their bravery knows no bounds. As Olivia (pictured here) reminded us yesterday, we are all G-d's children and we must take care of one another. 

Please join our cause. You are all Karibu (welcome)

www.wisergirls.org

Friday, March 7, 2014

Oh Pioneer

I don't know what it's like to be a WISER graduate.  No one does. The girls seemed happy but serious yesterday. The honor is a big responsibility and their work is just beginning, however, we will remain beside them and behind them every step of the way. 

"Oh pioneer
I sing your song
It's the hymn of those who've gone before and those who carry on
Pioneer
Your work is hard
But the future of us all rests on the shoulders of your heart

Where are we going
Oh I don't know
But still I've got to go
What will become of us
Oh I don't care
All I know is I'll go anywhere
Pioneer

Oh pioneer
So young and brave
Be careful of the careful souls who doubt you along the way
Pioneer
You orphaned child
Your mother is adventure and your father is the wild

Where are we going
Oh I don't know
But still I've got to go
What will become of us
Oh I don't care
All I know is I'll go anywhere
Pioneer

Let your heart not be troubled

I won't run when bullets chase me
I won't rest where arms embrace me
I will love when people hate me
I won't hush, no you can't make me
Send the dark but it won't break me
You can try but you can't change me
Take my life, they will replace me
I won't hush, no you can't make me
I won't hush, no we will sing

Where are we going
Oh I don't know
But still I've got to go
What will become of us
Oh I don't care
All I know is I'll go anywhere
Pioneer

Let your heart not be troubled"

The Band Perry

Gifts

Gifts come in many forms. You can be gifted with a talent, intelligence, musical ability or with something that merely fills you with joy when you are in possession of it. 

Being here with these brave young women is a gift. It fills me with joy, hope and peace to see their shining smiles. I will leave tomorrow, but I will take them with me in my heart and keep them safe until I return in January to receive
them again. 

Live. Learn. Be WISER
www.wisergirls.org

Graduation Day!

It's graduation day and the entire campus is full of excitement!  Crews of people worked all night long putting up chairs and tents and getting ready for the big day.  

The ceremony was supposed to begin at 10:00am, but in reality began at 1:00pm as often happens here in Kenya.  The faculty and graduates processed into the tented area, and we began a three hour celebration with pomp, circumstance, many speeches, and a blazing hot sun.

But to say it was worth it is an understatement. 

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Graduation Rehearsal

Excitement mounts as the graduates return to rehearse, greet friends and get cards of congratulation. 

Brave Mothers

Carolyne Gor blew me away last year when I learned that she, a 36 year old mother of four, enrolled at WISER. Her oldest daughter, Mary is two years behind her and prouder of her today than anyone.