More from Marks Journal

May 28

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KENYA

Today we are interviewing 50 plus kids for 10 or so new places in Heartspring, though desperation usually necessitates a couple of extras being squeezed in. Quite honestly, it's a juggle...

It's a drop in the ocean in one way, these kids are plucked from a dangerous/desperate life and shown love, support and hope, and for some of them this will create a great future. They may go on to become doctors, nurses, bank managers, drivers. The brutal reality is that many won't.

Some locals have explained that even if they get great uni results, the jobs will still go to friends, or those who can pay for the privilege. So it's a weigh-up... personally I think it's worth it.

One of the things I like about Orphfund is that the managers on the ground are locals ALREADY looking after their own, and us whiteys are more behind the scenes in governance, fundraising and planning, allowing the big picture to become possible. I like this because it's locals making the difference... autonomy.

One of the distressing byproducts of the extremely strong and recent Christian influence is that autonomy is removed and determination placed in the hands of a god. I can't see this as healthy, though Christian doctrine does support peace and unity.

Orphfund's model places autonomy back in the hands of individuals willing to work with the opportunities they are given. So far most of the managers are Christian, also preachers, but a different breed to most. They remind me of my dear father. A grass roots worker... only one has mentioned god in any context.

These people are carefully recruited by Steve, who is not a religious man, for their value to the kids. Yes, it's a juggle.

May 28

The number of hopefuls to enter the orphanage has grown beyond 75 now. The cases are extreme....

May 29

About 100 potential kids turned up today, for 10 places...