Welcome to The Godfrey Project! I would like to give a little insight to what this project is, who I am, and what this is all about.
My name is Haley Krocker and as of January 2017 I have received my Master's Degree in Special Education and have obtained my license to teach as an Early Intervention Specialist. In February of 2016, I found myself in a position needing a purpose, a way to give back. Something life changing. Africa had always been dream... children and special needs a passion. After much research, I found an organization that combined dreams with passion and made them a reality. I went through IVHQ (International Volunteers Headquarters), who then connected me with NVS in Kenya. In July of 2016, I spent 3 weeks working with special needs children at Ongata Rongai Special Home Care. At that time there are 25 children who lived there full-time. This is mainly due to the belief in the Kenyan culture every family member must be a working and active member of society. This mentality leaves those with special needs, in most cases, homeless.
This past May I left again work with the same school (Ongata Rongai Special Home Care and Training Centre
), this year I spent 6 weeks there. Unknowing to me I had already made a difference from the previous year. My first day back at the school I had noticed the children were receiving bucket showers, more frequent diaper changes, and better care in general. My host family, who runs and operates the school, had sat me down to let me know the impact I had had the previous year on childcare.
This year I had the opportunity to accomplish many amazing things, mainly due to the benefit I had this past May and my previous experience. I was able to provide them with 3 months of nonperishable supplies, such as diapers, wipes, rice, and beans. I was able to take one child to a psychiatrist and get him properly diagnosed and on the correct medication, so in the near future, he will be able to learn life skills. I took another child to an audiologist, who was previously thought to be deaf, to learn she is not and to work on getting her hearing aids. For the first time in 10 years, this child will be able to hear and eventually learn to communicate. Mainly I was able to provide these children with love, something that gets lost with all the daily routines that happen in order to maintain a life for these children and young adults.
I will be returning next summer. Before then I will be working on getting my 501 ( c ) (3), by doing this I will be able to continue doing amazing work for this school, with the hopes of having an on call doctor and/or nurse, a medical fund at a local hospital, and continue providing them with a healthy diet and medical supplies. Because of all of you here today you will continue to help me achieve these goals and dreams. I am so grateful to have been offered this experience and work with such an amazing group of children and young adults.
So why The Godfrey Project? Godfrey was a young man I absolutely fell in love with my first year in Kenya. Once back in the United States I hired an immigration attorney to work through the process of an adult adoption. This process came to a halt when I realized obtaining information needed would be easier once back in Kenya. With my bags packed, paperwork ready and a week to go I received an e-mail from my host dad. I had received the devastating news that through all the battles of Godfrey's blood infections his little body had no fight left. With 10 days until I arrived in Kenya I realized this child I had come to love, who was my inspiration for coming back and really trying to make a difference in the following year, would not be there to greet me with his smiling face. Godfrey was a joy to everyone at the school, children staff and volunteers alike. I felt since he was my inspiration there was no better way to honor him than to make him apart of this non-profit, one that aims to help those special needs children in 3rd world countries to have the fighting chance they deserve.
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