Dee's trip to Kenya & Tanzania Part 1: Porridge Club at Giachuki Primary School

African Children's Fund co-founder and Chief Executive, Dee Tyrer, visited projects we support in Kenya and Tanzania with our local NGO partners last month. Read on for part one of her review and keep an eye out for further updates in future posts!

"It was a privilege to visit our Kenyan projects last month and to be reminded of the excellent work being carried out to help children born into poverty. I visited three of the ten schools where porridge is provided daily to children who would otherwise go all day with no food, or not attend school at all in order to find food on the streets.

The welcome I was given by everyone was quite overwhelming and it was obvious how much a simple mug of porridge means to the children. It was winter in Kenya and I visited Giachuki School [pictured below], in the rural tea plantation area to the north west of Thika, on a damp, misty day. The lack of electricity at the school meant the classrooms were very dark and chilly and outside there were large areas of dark red mud. The children were trying to wrap up warmly, although I noticed quite a few with no shoes which must have been very uncomfortable.

Even so, when break time arrived and porridge was due to be served from the kitchen at the bottom of the playground, the children all raced to be first in line. When I asked them if they liked the porridge it was a very emphatic YES. One little boy told me it made his tummy feel warm and all the mugs were emptied very quickly.

Later, the headteacher showed me the school records which proved that attendance rates for the children receiving porridge had risen considerably and it was now unusual for them to be absent. The school has around 600 children and currently the poorest 200 receive porridge and I was asked if we could increase the amount as there were more needy children who would benefit.

My visit proved once more that providing a mug of porridge to children at school is a simple and very effective way to give children a chance to learn and work their way out of poverty. If you can help us provide porridge to more hungry children please click on the button below. Thank you in advance."