Only 50% of students in Kenya who finish primary school go on to complete high school. The founders and staff of Uhuru Academy want to change that statistic. Students who attend high school are more likely to get jobs and provide financial support to their homes and communities.
Faith Kerubo Lumumba began attending Uhuru Academy, a boarding school for girls, when she was 15. The academy is in Limuru, Kenya.
Catherine Mitchell is the Director of Discipleship and Education at Uhuru. She says, “Many of our students come from impoverished backgrounds. But they do not allow that to hold them back.” Uhuru Academy seeks to serve unreached people groups and low-income families by offering scholarships.
Uhuru Academy opened in 2013. Students come from a variety of backgrounds. There are 42 different tribes in Kenya, each with its own language and culture. Many students speak English, Kiswahili, and a native language.
In the mornings, Faith heard other students singing worship songs in prayer time. A voice inside her urged her to join them. Staff mentored her, and she learned more about Jesus in prayer meetings, chapel, and a discipleship class. At age 16, Faith recognized Christ as her Savior.
Faith says she learned that discipleship and accountability are vital for a Christian. Believers need others to encourage them in their journey. Other Christians help her abide in scripture, prayer, and church.
Faith is eager to serve as she has been served. “If young people want someone to talk to, I’m here for them.”
Julie Garber is on Uhuru’s Board of Directors. Offering girls school options is urgent. “The favor of the boy child is still very real in Kenya. So if a family has to choose to fund education, the boy is first,” she says.
Garber adds, “Providing an education for a girl has the potential to break the chain of poverty in a family. And providing discipleship breaks the chain of spiritual poverty.”
Students follow a rigorous schedule. They rise at 5:00 a.m., clean the campus, and attend class from 7:00 to 4:00. Faith enjoyed after-school club activities related to discipleship, reading, and crafts. (She learned to knit and make bracelets.) On Thursdays, she enjoyed sports like handball and badminton.
Faith hopes to attend a university later this year. She wants to become a high school teacher. In her spare time, she enjoys Bible study with her family. When asked what she would say to American students, Faith replied, “Welcome them all to come!” Kenya has beautiful, green mountains and hospitable, friendly people.
Why? Students all over the world benefit from an education that anchors them in a biblical worldview. Truths learned at school spill into students’ families and communities.
Pray schools like Uhuru Academy will lead students to Jesus. Pray the academy will have every provision met so it can serve students well.