Kakuswi Special School for the Deaf
Timothy Mukilya had a dream to start a school for deaf children after witnessing how their special needs were not being met at “regular” schools or at home. He started the Kakuswi Special School for the Deaf back in 2006 with just three children and one teacher.
The school is located in a rural area about 3 hours Southeast of Nairobi, Kenya.
Timothy would go house to house to reach out to families with deaf children, encouraging the parents to bring the children to school. In Kenya, many times a deaf child is stigmatized and may be hidden away. Their deafness is sometimes perceived as a punishment from God. Because of this, some of the children were older by the time they started school. Timothy has worked hard to educate families and assure them that their children CAN learn in the proper environment.
In 2009, the enrollment grew to 7 students and the school began to also board the children. In 2012, the school grew to 27 children and was elevated to a Full Special School Status. This enabled the Teachers Service Commission (TSC) to begin to deploy teachers to the school. Today, there are 8 teachers at Kakuswi.
Currently, the school has 78 pupils, 38 boys and 40 girls in preschool through grade 8. There have also been 5 recent graduates to high school. The children range in age from 5 years old up to students in their early 20s. The older students got a late start on beginning their education because of their situation at home.
These children come from overwhelming poverty. Some are orphans, some have only one parent.
Most families in this area are farmers and earn less than $300 per year, so it is extremely difficult for them to pay their school fees.
The 2021 school budget is approximately $450 US dollars per year, per child. The government provides a small stipend to the school towards this cost and families are asked to pay a small fee, but most cannot afford to do so. Our hope is to provide sponsors for the children so that it will ease the burden by providing funds to help cover food, housing, medical attention, and education. Our dollars go so far in Kenya!
To learn more about the children and sponsorship, click here: http://loveabides.org/sponsor/
To see more pictures of the school and children, click here: https://loveabides.org/random-photos/