Category Archives: General

Harambee total!

We are so humbled to announce that after just one week, our total is already up to $5,575! That’s exactly 27.8% of what we need to cover the payroll for the secondary teachers for April and May.

The academic staff has been hard at work putting together materials to email out to the students at Angel Secondary to work on while school is closed, including practice exams for the classes who will be sitting for a national exam in the fall.

We are so grateful to those of you who have given to this endeavor. Starting today, we’ll be sharing some pictures of the secondary school staff members to introduce you to the men and women you’re standing in the gap for while the school is closed. We love our staff and are so thrilled to be able to continue paying them right now…we wouldn’t be able to do so without your generosity. Thank you so much.

The Miracle of Transformation at Angel House

For those who have entered the home of Angel House, they have been met with bright, smiling faces as soon as they enter. It is impossible not to notice the love and joy that makes up the environment at Angel. After meeting these children, it is almost inconceivable to believe where they started. This transformation that the children go through is one of the many miracles that God performs here at Angel House.

When a child first arrives at Angel House, he or she is coming out of a difficult life situation. Almost always, they carry that with them into the house, whether it is trauma, abuse, grief, hunger, or struggles. Many of them are not used to being able to trust anyone or know what it is like to be in an environment where they are provided for.

In the beginning, a new child tends to be withdrawn, tearful, and anxious. Some of them hoard or steal food because they are used to being unsure when they will eat again. As time goes on, they slowly begin to transform physically, mentally, and spiritually as they are exposed to the love of their Father through the actions of staff members and the other children. The children’s bodies become stronger and healthier. They begin to smile and laugh regularly. They become close to their new family members without fearing that someone will hurt them or leave if they make a mistake.

God changes these children. He gives them a home and a family. He gives them a future and a chance to spread the love that God has shown them. Thank you to those of you who so faithfully partner with Grassroots and give financially. God is using you as well in this process and it is a crucial part. We are so thankful!

 

Greenhouse Farming

With most farms in rural Tanzania relying on rainfall as their only source of irrigation, you can probably imagine that many farmers experience difficulties during times of intense, dry, heat and lack of rainfall. Angel House is attempting to overcome this challenge with innovative and creative solutions. We are excited to announce that, with the fundraising efforts of a volunteer team, Angel House is the first in their district to implement greenhouse farming.

The greenhouse will allow our farmers to regulate and manipulate the environment that the plants are growing in and protect them during seasons of harsh climate change. Drip irrigation will be used in the greenhouse, which will not only provide a consistent and reliable source of water, but also be more controlled so that the water reaches the root of the plant instead of above or around the roots, increasing plant growth and decreasing weed growth.

Since this is a new development for Angel House, and a relatively new idea to Tanzanian agriculture, the volunteer team has also generously provided funding to bring in an expert to do training with Angel House staff in order to learn how to effectively utilize this new tool. Thank you to all who donated to this greenhouse project! This is a very exciting opportunity as we partner together in order to increase the agriculture at Angel House and become more sustainable!

Strong Leadership in Tanzania

An organization’s effectiveness largely depends on those leading it. Not only do they set an example for the other members and represent the organization, but they are responsible for making decisions that directly impact all involved.

Good leaders have vision and are constantly improving upon it. They must be lifelong learners and good listeners with open minds. They act with integrity, not just on an organizational level, but in their personal lives. They act and make decisions together as a team, and they stay accountable and transparent to each other and the organization. They also empower and mobilize others. Thankfully, Grassroots has an incredible team of Tanzanians who embody all this and more.

Each member brings something unique and valuable to the group to make it what it is. With Mwita Samson’s wisdom and empowerment of others, Kevin’s discipline and focus, Florence’s assertiveness and integrity, Joseph’s humility and listening skills, Anna’s intuition and resourcefulness, James’ proactiveness and dependability, Teddy’s strength and loyalty, and John Kinyanjui’s creativity and passion, this team works hard to help shape the organization into what it is today!

 

Giving Tuesday

As we prepare our hearts for this Thanksgiving season, one way to express gratitude is by giving to others. Giving Tuesday is a day to do just that. Beginning in 2012, on the Tuesday after Thanksgiving, a social media initiative was started to battle the also popular Cyber Monday and Black Friday in order to preserve the giving spirit of the holiday season instead of the consumer mentality, and to celebrate and encourage giving. This year, #GivingTuesday will fall on November 28, and Grassroots would like to request that you choose Angel House and Angel House Secondary School to give to during this end-of-year giving season. We realize that there are many amazing organizations and charities that you can partner with, and we are so grateful for your generosity and investment in what God is doing in the lives of the children, students, staff, community, nation, and world through Grassroots Angel House.

Angel House Market

This holiday season, we have a fun new option for friends of Grassroots and Angel House who would like to give something meaningful to their loved ones for Christmas that will, in turn, benefit the Angel House children.

The staff of both the children’s home and the school have made wish lists for both Christmas and the start of 2018 for various needs that we will encounter over the holidays and into the New Year, and anyone can contribute to their wish list.

If you or your family would like to participate in this alternative gift market, please glance through the brochure below. If you find a gift you’re interested in giving to someone, there are two ways to give.

1. Send a check to Grassroots at the address that follows with “AH Market” and the specific item you’d like to give notated on the memo line of your check.

Grassroots
PO Box 106
Pewaukee, WI 53072

2. Click on the “donate” tab here on the web page and select “Angel House Market” from the drop-down menu, notating the specific gift in the space provided below.

 

 

 

 

A Day in the Life of an Angel House Child

 

As a friend, sponsor, supporter, or partner of Grassroots, you may have seen pictures, heard stories, or even come to visit. But some may wonder what daily life looks like for an Angel House child. Angel House and Angel Secondary lay tucked away in a quiet, peaceful area of the village of Gamasara, just outside the hustle and bustle of the small town, Tarime. They are about 1 mile away from the main road down a long dusty road.

On a typical day, while it is still dark, you would hear the aunties’ voices in the hallway of Angel House announcing it is time to wake up and pray. Just before this, the high school students have already risen, bathed, and gone to the school with the other boarding students for morning study hall. Slowly, but surely, the sleepy eyed children emerge from their beds and gather in the living room. Together, they all join with the aunties in singing a praise song. Then, a person says a prayer; any announcements are made by the staff for the day, and the kids scatter to prepare themselves for school, now fully awake. Shortly, the school bus honks its horn announcing it is time to leave for school. The children run into the yard and onto the bus to head to the border town of Kenya where their school is. The pre-K students get to sleep in a little later, but soon are woken up by the aunties, dressed for school, and made their way over to the classroom.

At 3pm, the high school (secondary) students get dismissed for a short break, so they go home, do their chores and help the little ones bathe. Then they return to school for dinner, school devotions, and evening study hall. Finally, around 5 or 6 pm, the school bus pulls into the yard and the primary kids run off the bus (or stumble, depending on the day and energy level J) The kids change clothes, do their chores, and eat dinner. After dinner, everyone gathers in the living room again for evening devotions and the room fills with beautiful voices singing praise to God in unison. Once devotions are over, it is homework time and then bedtime. Don’t worry, though; the children still get plenty of time to be kids as well. While it is important to teach them responsibility and hard work from an early age, Angel House is also a place where play time is encouraged. On the weekends and holidays, you might find a group playing soccer, or a group playing jump rope, or another game. You may see some of them making mud houses or sculptures, swinging on the swing set, or playing make-believe games. Overall, while the picture may look a little different from your typical family unit from a distance, when you take a closer look, it really isn’t all that different. Angel House may be a big family, but it is a family indeed.

 

Pigs and chicken and ducks, oh my!

Angel House continues to grow children but is now growing more than just that! In addition to our milk cows, goats, and chickens, our friends over at Smiles of Hope have been investing in our pigs, and purchased ducks, guinea fowl, and continue to supplement Angel House’s efforts towards the fish pond. The more food we grow, the less we have to purchase, and sustainability continues to come closer. Thank you to all who have given towards agricultural expansion and our livestock efforts.
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Thank you Angel House club!

Several young women from Kansas have been working hard hosting bake sales, selling dog biscuits and childrens’ toys, all in an effort to fundraise to support Winnie at Angel House. This spring, CIY Super Start kids’ conferences are featuring a video about the example these young ladies are setting for others their age, and this past weekend the girls attended the conference and were invited up on stage to share in person about how they are changing lives through their faith and service!

Grassroots, who supports Angel House in Tanzania, loves and appreciates the Angel House club and their determination to make a difference in the world through supporting Winnie. It is truly exciting to think about what God may bring about because of the example you have set and the inspiration that you are to so many of your peers. God bless each of you!

For more information about how to sponsor a child at Angel House or support the project in Tanzania, contact Holly Heyroth Opundo at holly.heyroth@gmail.com or by phone at (254) 784-9020.

 

Back to school!

In East Africa, the school year begins in January and concludes in December. Which means Angel House kids have just started back into a new school year! New uniforms, new shoes from their Christmas gifts, school bags and textbooks. Whether the student studies onsite at Angel House kindergarten, takes the school bus to the border to attend Sunshine Primary School on the Kenyan side, walks across the yard to attend high school classes at Angel House Secondary School, or packs up to attend college in one of the larger towns, they go with a sense of having a family behind them. Part of their family is still close by, staff members who are a call away. Some of their family is on the other side of the world too, praying for their minds to be opened up, thanking God for the opportunity they have to study, and giving to Grassroots so that Angel House can purchase all the school supplies and pay all the school fees necessary. The kids are thankful to all who are rooting for their success, praying for their knowledge and wisdom to grow, and providing ways for them to continue with the opportunity for education as far as they possibly can.

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