Pastor Marabu, along with other Pastors, pioneered and planted The Heart Of Mercy in Nairobi in March 2003. During his volunteer service to the community, Pastor Handson came face to face with the ravages of the HIV/AIDS pandemic. The plight of children whose parents had succumbed to the deadly virus was too much to bear for Pastor Marabu and he decided to take action.
In the early days, Pastor would assist in getting sponsors for the families and children with needs, most of whom were afflicted by poverty. Hardest hit were parents infected with the HIV/AIDS virus, and those who were too weak to take care of their children. Getting sponsors for these children was a daunting task. A task further compounded by the fact that the few sponsors he would get could barely afford to provide for a child’s basic needs.
Soon, parents who were infected with HIV/AIDS started dying, leaving their children with nobody to take care of them. Most of these children had already dropped out of school to look after their ailing parents. Even after the government started offering free education in primary schools, it was very difficult for the ailing parents to afford uniforms and other school requirements for their children, which the government could not provide.
After the parents died, many of the children could not go back to school because they had to take care of their siblings. Hungry and helpless, many went to the streets to pillage in garbage sites. Others were kicked out of their parents rented houses, leaving them with no choice but to hit the streets.
Unable to accept the unfolding scenario, Pastor Marabu started looking for a shelter for the children where he could house and feed them. He also decided to set up a school for these children. With no money, but a big faith in God, Handson Marabu rented a nearby building where he put up the children.
Pastor rallied the community to support him with food, clothing, etc. Many are the times he would get people to donate just enough for the day’s meal to the children. Although those were very difficult days, God was always at hand to provide.
With more people volunteering to teach the children, formal learning was gradually introduced at the center. Despite the fact that there were no desks, the children had to learn while sitting on the bare floor or standing. Today, with the support of a few volunteers, both local and international, there are a few desks and reading tables. The need however, is still very high as a number of the children continue to sit on the bare floor during lessons.
The Heart of Mercy Orphanage is a non-profit center that provides for the basic needs of approximately 80 children who live on-site, and offers support for approximately 20 more who can be integrated back into their local homes.
Will you be one of the sponsors?