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Sara Hollis' Fundraiser:

Project Wema

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Sara Hollis


Wema Children's Centre, located outside Bungoma Kenya, is an orphanage now housing almost 160 children and is combined with Highway Academy, a school that continues to be nationally recognized. For example, last year a current student received the highest score in the entire Western Province on the Kenya Certificate of Primary Education, further proving that Wema is truly providing a quality home and education to an area where most are destitute and orphaned by the 30-40% aids rate. It is simply not an option for Wema to shut down from scarce resources; it is the rock of the community and provides a future for these children.

Three other students and myself had the opportunity to travel to Bukembe last winter when we heard that Wema was in fear of shutting down due to lack of funds. Theresa and Stephen Wati, the directors and parents to 9 kids of their own, welcomed us with open arms and were excited to collaborate on ideas to both save what they have started and allow it to thrive in the future through sustainable programs.

Since our trip, we have partnered with Wema to work on a technology program through One Child Per Laptop, analyzed funding options such as a sponsor-a-child program through The School Fund, and are working with an adviser, Dr. Paul Farmer, to test and treat all 173 children for HIV/AIDS through AMPATH.

We have made much headway, but there is much work to still be done. At the University of Texas, Students for Wema is specifically working on the water crisis. The current well is frequently dry and when water is collected, it is unclean due to its shallow depth interfering with the sewage line. This issue continues to cause chronic health problems for the children and to make matters worse, one of the worst droughts in over 60 years plagued The Horn of Africa this past year killing tens of thousands and putting Wema's situation at increased risk.

This February I am running my third marathon in honor of Wema Children's Centre. I am asking you to partner with me and the rest of the Wema team to tackle these problems and allow Wema Children's Centre and Highway Academy to continue with its vision in mission in the Bukembe community. Any and all donations are appreciated, no matter how small! All money raised will go towards the water project in collaboration with Students for Clean Water at UT. I hope you are as excited as I am about this cause, and thanks so much for your support!



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