Sue HilliardWritten by Sue Hilliard

I returned from my visit to Double Joy children’s farm about a month ago.  It is essentially an orphanage and home to 90 children at a time.  Situated in a very rural part of Western Kenya about fifty miles west of Kisumu near the Ugandan border.  I was there for about two weeks, spending time with my Mother who is the initiator, the staff and children.

The day after I arrived, which was a Saturday I met the accounts clerk called Paul, who told me he had received his salvation, and invited me to come to his church, as he was preaching that Sunday.  I did not agree to, as I usually worshipped with the children on Sunday morning.  But there was no Sunday morning meeting at Double joy as a large number of the children went with Paul to his church, which was only a short walk away.  The children are brought up with Christian values, and most of the Staff have Christian beliefs, but Paul had obviously had a life changing experience in his salvation, and was interested in spreading the gospel.

The Sunday after there was a worship meeting at Double Joy, the children led it; I was the only adult present.  The singing was loud and passionate with the Holy Spirit being invited to the meeting, and some of the children were quite emotional.  I had not experienced this with them before.  Helen, who is probably about fourteen, preached from Jeremiah chapter 23, her message was that if God is with us any thing is possible.  She preached with great conviction.

During my visit I was involved with some activities with the children.  One of them I had prepared, which involved the nursery class.  I get on well with the teacher, Emma.  The activity involved sticking tissue paper butterflies and flowers to a paper to make a picture.  The other activities, which I hadn’t prepared but the Manager announced that I would be doing at the Sunday afternoon meeting with all the children present, was some needlework with the older girls.  I had some material needles and thread, which I had brought with me, and I felt from inspiration from the Created to Worship workshops with Trish Venn earlier this year decided it would be good to try to some appliqué.  I asked them to draw a picture of their choosing on a piece of material, cut it out and sew it to another piece of material, the choices of picture were quite interesting.  I did this with two classes of twelve on two consecutive days, and we joined the pictures together and hung them on the wall of their sewing room.

I also joined the children and house parents in walks to the local market to buy food; it is situated about a mile away from Double Joy.  A teacher, some of the girls and myself also visited a local sustainable living and training project called Rafiki wa maendeleo.

My Mother had had a cataract operation, and her sight had not improved as much as hoped, this turned out to be due to a complication, which has now been sorted out by laser surgery.  Her sight is much more improved.

Thankyou to everyone who prayed for my safety, and I hope you enjoyed reading this account of my visit.