Melinda Alford, a school librarian at Unqua Elementary School and board member at Reason2Smile shares her thoughtful initiative and how she has adapted the program during the quarantine
I started the Kindness Club for the fourth and fifth grades this Spring. The idea was to meet four times to create projects in a MakerSpace format that would benefit various groups. The projects were funded by a grant I received from the Long Island School Media Association (LISMA). Our first meeting was in March and the club made gift bags for a homeless shelter, John's Place, in Greenport. Our second meeting was planned to make dog and cat toys to be donated to an animal shelter and our third and fourth meetings were planned to make recycle paper beaded bracelets (the beads are from Kenya) and develop a school-wide fundraiser for Reason2Smile.
All of us at Reason2Smile send out heartfelt wishes that everyone is safe and healthy during these very difficult times of COVID 19. Our prayers are with all of the health care professionals and all workers on the front times. I am hoping we will see better times soon.
Kenya is also experiencing the quarantining and social distancing that COVID 19 requires. While certain areas can do this, much of the housing environment in Mtwapa makes social distancing impossible. Even more difficult is the lack of services that we in the United States have available such as skilled and qualified health care, unemployment payments, small Business stimulus loans, Hunger relief agencies/food pantries as well as online shopping and home delivery.
Please read this lovely update about a former Jambo Jipya student who is now attending the University of Nairobi. To reach this milestone one needs the desire, the motivation, the intelligence and of course the resources.
Executive Director, R2S
As we head into the holiday season of giving, we are reminded of all the important causes and charities doing wonderful and meaningful work. Whether it is supporting those in need or raising money to fight life threatening diseases along with money for the research for cures. Knowing the plethora of worthy organizations to choose from, Reason2Smile is extremely grateful that you support us – whether it is large or small, new or long term. Since we are a small grassroots organization every dollar counts and we are proud to say that most of the money raised for Reason2Smile is sent to the Jambo Jipya School and Children’s home.
We help to subsidize the school so the tuition is reasonable for a low-income family and provide scholarships for certain students unable to pay. The funding from Reason2Smile helps to pay salaries (teachers and staff), provide food, school supplies, books as well as pay the rent and expenses for the children living at the Jambo Jipya Children’s home.