A Letter from Evans Haron

Evans is a beneficiary of Tana River Life Foundation. The foundation sponsored his secondary school education in the Tana Delta, followed by his undergraduate studies at UTAR in Malaysia. We are happy to report that he has graduated. To thank the foundation and his sponsors, Evans wrote the following letter. He hopes it’ll inspire other young people on their journey in life. We hope it’ll inspire you to lend a hand to others in need and hungry for the opportunities we take for granted.

It’s my hope that you are all doing well during this tough time. All is well with me. I am writing to inform you that I have completed my studies in Bachelor in Petrochemical engineering. Thank you for the sponsorship you offered me from the beginning of my secondary school days till the completion of my studies. Thanks to all the staff at TRLF for the time they invested in advising and coaching me throughout my studies, the time they spent in helping me budget for my living expenses both in Kenya and here in Malaysia, correcting me when I was on the wrong path and thanks to all the donors who have contributed to positive changes in my life directly or indirectly.

Just to give a brief background on how I joined TRLF. I completed my primary school education was placed among the top 3 in my class. Unfortunately my parents were not able to afford the school fees for my to continue on to secondary school. At the start of the term, my friend Komora Benedicto, who also graduated recently from UTAR, shared his notes from school with me so that I could study them on my own at home. He was being sponsored by TRLF then and he advised me to apply for a bursary at TRLF.

The first bursary that I received was worth KSH3000 which is equivalent to RM114 ( ~S$38 ). It did not cover my whole school fees for that semester but it instilled hope and determination in me. I pushed myself to the limit as I knew that with good results I could be awarded another bursary. And that is how my life with TRLF started and here I am today with my bachelor’s degree in Engineering.

RM114 may not be that much but it can change someone’s life as it did mine. There are many young people going through what I had experienced. Some won’t be strong enough, they may be discouraged at a young age and their efforts and life might completely go to waste. Thanks to sponsorships from TRLF through the kind donors and staff, young people receive an education and opportunities in life which were previously unavailable to them.

So thank you once again for the opportunity and I can’t wait to continue giving my services when I’m called upon.

Yours sincerely
Evans Haron


Constructing a Two Classroom Block at Miticharaka Primary School : Funded by Charis Singapore And Parents of the Students

In late 2018, a team from Tana River Life Foundation visited Mticharaka Primary School situated in a most remote part of the Tana Delta. The journey took 2 hours by road, an hour by car and another by motorcycle. During the wet season cars run the risk of getting stuck on the muddy roads. This is part of the delta borders Kilifi County, and is located near Kurawa village (mis-spelt Karawa on Google Earth), a short distance from the Indian Ocean.

The local school probably ranks as the most dilapidated school in the Delta. Despite its physical condition, the school enjoys a very high enrolment.
The students are extremely talented. That day they performed choral verses in three languages, Giriama, their mother tongue, Kiswahili, the National Language of Kenya and English, confidently, and flawlessly for the TRLF team.

We were determined to provide these children and their families the motivation to strive for a better future for themselves through education. In early 2020, Charis Singapore provided funds to TRLF to construct a two classroom block for Mticharaka Primary School. Like all other public school infrastructural assistance projects undertaken by TRLF, this project is a joint effort by the donor ( in this case Charis ) and the parents of the school children, in the ratio of 80:20

The TRLF team visited Miticharaka school at the start of March 2020 to meet with the parents and community leaders, together with the Headteacher and his staff. We explained and outlined the methodology for the assistance, and what was expected of the parents. Parents could contribute money, labour or locally available construction materials, e.g. building sand, water supply.

Work commenced immediately and progressed even after schools were closed in late March due to the Covid-19 pandemic. However, delays were experienced when movement restrictions were imposed in April, stalling purchase of building materials from the neighbouring Kilifi County. The rains in May led to road closures delaying their delivery. In the meantime, the metal doors and windows were being fabricated at the TRLF workshop. The classroom block was finally completed at the end of September in time to receive the Standard 8 examination candidates when schools in Kenya were partially reopened on Monday 12th October 2020. Parents contributed their share as agreed enabling the completion of the project.

The TRLF team visited Miticharaka Primary School on Tuesday 13th October 2020 to officially hand over the building to the local community via the Headteacher.

On behalf of the students and parents of Miticharaka Primary School, we thank all our benefactors at Charis Singapore for improving the learning environment at Mticharaka Primary School, Tana Delta, Kenya.

Gabriel Teo Kian Chong
17th October 2020