Havilla Children's Centre

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9.9 / 10 after 3 Reviews Based on overall, support & value average ratings
Program website: http://www.havillacc.com/

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During Summer 2013 i decided i would like to try a new adventure where i could put a variety of my skills to good use. I am a qualified Nursery Nurse and student social worker and was therefore interested in working in Kenya around this field.

I came across the Havilla Children's Centre and contacted them to find out about their organisation and how i could become involved. Barnabas is the manager of the Havilla Childrens Centre and his wife Miller is a teacher there.

Barnabas provided me with all the information i needed and was very kind and thoughtful in being able to understand any fears i may have about coming out to volunteer. I decided that i could not miss out on this fantastic opportunity, so i booked my flights as soon as i could.

When i arrived i was collected at the airport by Barnabas, i was then introduced to his family, i was made to feel very welcome straight away.

My first day at the Havilla Children's Centre was really exciting, I could hear the children chanting with excitement as they could hear that a new volunteer had entered the building. At this moment i felt like i was a celebrity, all the children jumped up as soon as they saw me and gave me a hug to welcome me to their school.

I had the most amazing time working with these children aged between 2 to 6 years old, i was even able to skype my Nursery School back in England. During this skype session i had all the 6 year olds with me and we sang a song to the Children in England, they then sang a song back to us, it was a very exciting moment for everyone involved.

Speaking to Barnabas before i arrived in Africa he asked me what i wanted to get out of coming to the Havilla Centre. He was aware that i was a student social worker so kindly set up meetings for me to visit children homes and HIV charities. i realised that there was a variety of opportunities for me to engage with the community and offer as much support as i possibly could.

I brought a variety of childrens clothes with me and visited families in need of these items in the slums. Furthermore i was able to deliver HIV awareness training to around 50 members of the community.

During my time volunteering here there was a number of volunteers all from different backgrounds, some people had never worked with children before but wanted to experience it, others wanted to focus on other volunteering work such as being the cook for the school, running the youth club and supporting young adults with filming their acting class. All of which Barnabas was able to set up for his volunteers.

Not only do you get fantastic hands on experience working out there you can also explore Kenya by going on safari and much more.

I would highly recommend the Havilla Children's Centre, it is a fantastic place to be with fantastic teachers called Miller, Winnie, Lydia and Domitilla.

I miss you all and looking forward to seeing you again :)

Darren Williamson

Program:
Location:
Posted: August 5, 2014
Overall:
10
Support:
10
Value:
10
By: darrensw
Age:
26

After contacting Havilla Children's Centre about volunteering there, I soon had my flights booked and began fundraising ready for my trip. I chose to go to Havilla due to their support and the information they provided when I first contacted them when deciding where to volunteer.
The school is based in Kibera Slums where all the children and staff live. I went over for 4 weeks and lived with Barnabas, the director, his wife, a teacher at the school and their family. On arrival I was made to feel very welcome and everyone was very friendly and understanding when I was a little homesick in my first few days.
I was soon in the school meeting all the teachers and children, they were also extremely welcoming and very appreciative of any work I would do. The children loved all the volunteers from the second we entered the school. I assisted in lessons, taught circle times and sports and assisted with cleaning and cooking.
They were also very keen for us to go out and see the sights and safari's and helped organise the trips for weekends when the school was closed.
My four weeks spent in Kenya has to be the best time of my life, it was eye opening to see how different cultures live, learn and work and the teachers at the school are inspirational and I have found life long friends in them all.
Most importantly whilst I was there I felt safe, welcomed and most importantly a member of the family and part of the community feel.
I was appointed as a trustee of the school and I continue to support their work, and will most certainly be returning very soon.

Program:
Location:
Posted: July 31, 2014
Overall:
10
Support:
9
Value:
10
Age:
21