Korr Kenya

Easter Outreach

Here are a few photos of Tirrim Schools participating in outreach over their Easter break. "Time well spent!" says Pastor David Gargule.

The students and are now on break for April before the start of next term. Please continue praying for the students and the teachers. And would you pray also that more sponsors would join in supporting the Tirrim Schools? 

All photos courtesy of David Gargule

Cultural Day in Korr


10 October. Korr, Kenya. 

The streets filled, shops closed, and the church building overflowed with Rendille gathering to celebrate God's doing among them through Tirrim Schools.

The celebration lasted the entire day and was filled with laughter, ceremonial and sacred songs, presentations by the Tirrim School classes, and the serving of traditional Rendille food. 

The children sung their hearts out and parents join them and tears of joy were shed as people were reminded of who they are. An old man run to the stage and join the kids in singing. The leadership appreciated the Tirrim administration for organizing such events and to keep the Rendille culture alive and to connect them with the culture which is about to be eroded by modernization. Our County representative who is a Muslim said this “Tirrim which means a cornerstone have become our pillar today for not forgetting our culture, am proud to associate myself with them and I will be always in front to see how i can help”
— Pastor David Gargule

A huge "Thank You!" to all our partners whose donations help keep the Tirrim Schools open. The Lord is indeed doing great work among the Rendille people! 

Tirrim Schools Report - Term 2

Below is the Tirrim School Report for Term 2, written by Headmaster Lawrence Letipo. These reports are a new method of keeping you updated on the Tirrim Schools. Individual child reports are simply not feasible but the Tirrim leadership will be sending these school reports to us at the close of every term. We are so grateful for their hard work and thankful, too, for the generous sponsors! Make sure not to miss the prayer requests listed toward the bottom of the report. 

We are doing very well! The Lord was good despite all the challenges over the last term. Korr is still dry, hot and dusty with cold nights. This is normal in July to the end of August. We are already in August vacation which started from 7th August - 7th September when the term 3 begins. Last term was a hard one, most of our teachers left us due to the salary delay. Nomadic school had reduced from 8 teachers to 5. We had already moved the lower school to the upper ground. We thank God for the wisdom and we are running the institution with ease. We are now left with manageable teaching staff for all of our schools totaling to 21 from 33 previous population.

-Excellent solar power installation by the Kenyan government for std 1 pupils
-Good cooperation from the parents.
-Pupils who are eager to learn the word of God during bible classes and the morning devotions.
-Successful talent fellowship at the church organized by the Tirrim teachers

Although we recorded some cases of absenteeism, the general attendance was good. The total number of students is 655 of which 301 are girls and 354 are boys respectively

The term recorded more cases of malaria.The school kids are doing good.  This term’s results are really promising especially for Class 3.  I think both teachers and the kids are really doing a perfect job towards their work.  High discipline was observed despite much illness and a high rate of absenteeism within the course of the term was observed.  I think this was due to much troubles which are being caused by the drought.

The general performance of the students in the just ended term two assessment is good. There has been an improvement in the results compared to term one.

I have requested each teacher to submit a list of students who are not able to read in respective grades and challenge them to help those identified.

I will find time to assess them personally and suggest how best we can help them read and write with ease.

- Pray for dedicated true Christian teachers
- Pray for regular salaries for our teachers
- The school needs learning materials which are scarce now
- Pray for the wisdom in the leadership and transition process
- Pray for our candidates ( std 8 ) education trip to down Kenya where they can learn things practically.

CALENDAR - School closed on Wednesday, 5th of August and will re-open on Monday, 7th of September, 2015. 

Thanks for all the continued support, spiritually, materially and financially.

Lawrence Letipo
Headmaster, Tirrim Schools

An Afternoon at Tirrim's Nomadic Primary School

At the nomadic school this morning we listened to the children singing praises, sat under a bush tree to drink chai with the Rendille cooking lunch, and observed the closing of term. (The school had to close early due to lack of food so we were all the more glad to catch them on their final day before letting out for break.) Nancy also had the opportunity to address the teachers and then later the students as well.

Nancy encouraging the students to value their education, work hard, and look to their teachers as mentors. 

Nancy encouraging the students to value their education, work hard, and look to their teachers as mentors. 

Unfortunately, we've learned that the schools are struggling financially. The missionaries who lived here in Korr for more than thirty years have just retired and, as they used a portion of their private funds to support the school, their retirement has had significant financial impact. Several of the nurseries (kindergarten) have closed and the leadership has just made the difficult decision to begin charging fees for the high school which will likely result in it's closing as well.

But there are still many wonderful things happening here! The students are studying diligently, the girl to boy ratio remains nearly even, the teachers are committed as ever to seeing their students offered a valuable Christ-centered education, and the student's parents have begun to contribute as well. The school leadership began charging a very small fee to help cover meal costs for the students. We are very excited about this because it helps parents to take responsibility for their children's education in a manageable way.

Enjoying a cup of chai.

Enjoying a cup of chai.

Ultimately the deep desire of the school leadership is that the Tirrim Schools become largely self sustaining. The generous donations of our sponsors help to provide a part of the school's budget and, while we hope that our contribution can grow and that the Foundation can continue to provide the much needed extra boost, we are not the be all, end all. Nancy an I spent hours in conversation this afternoon with Pastor David Gargule and the Tirrim Schools Headmaster, Lawrence Letipo brainstorming ways to help the school become self-sustaining. What an encouraging conversation! We are so impressed with the men who are leading these schools and look forward to continuing our partnership with them. 

Nancy is standing here next to Marta- the only female teacher at the school. Imagine what a role model and confidant she is to the young girls!

Nancy is standing here next to Marta- the only female teacher at the school. Imagine what a role model and confidant she is to the young girls!

The nomadic Rendille tribe of Northern Kenya sustain themselves in this harsh environment through livestock- moving their herds several times a year based on the rains. The nomadic school was strategically placed in the center of their lands so that it is always accessible for the Rendille students. It is part of the Tirrim Schools (five schools here in Korr), the only schools left in Northern Kenya that are still Christian. Let that sink in. The only Christian schools in Northern Kenya.  And yet, because of the commitment of the school leadership the Tirrim Schools continue to have a positive spiritual and academic impact on over half of the Rendille tribe’s students. Praise the Lord!

But they still need our help. If you know anyone who would be willing to participate in the Tirrim Schools sponsorship program please share with them. And keep an eye out- if we have the opportunity to provide seed funding for a self-sustainability project we'll be letting you know.

Arrived in Korr, Kenya

Greetings from Korr!

Nancy and I spent the better part of yesterday in a small plane over northern Kenya and have just woken, after a much needed night of rest, to our first full day in Korr. Here’s a quick update:

The Lord has given us many traveling mercies. Praise Him with us!

  • Nine hour flights are much more comfortable when the seats next to you are empty. (We had 2 of them.)
  • A large (9 seater) airplane for the trip up to Korr meant Nancy didn’t get air-sick.
  • Our house in Korr has tall ceilings, is made from cement, and has good cross-ventilation; it is much MUCH cooler than the other house we had been told we’d stay in. We feel incredibly blessed with these accommodations.

And praise Him for rain! Korr has been in a severe drought, the worst in 30 years. I suppose our Seattle presence had some influence because there were rains last night, the first in since last April. They seem to be skirting Korr, however, so please pray with us that the Lord would bring rain directly here and that the wells would fill up. Most of the wells are dry, which means that animals and people are suffering.

We are heading out to see the nomadic school today. They are finishing their term early due to lack of food and we are very grateful to see them on their last day before school lets out for break.

From Laura, for both of us.