Matanya's Hope News:


Past News

Click here to view the Winter 2008 Newsletter

Adobe Acrobate Reader is required. You can download it by clicking here.

Garage Sale

Saturday November 15, 2008
Huge Garage Sale to benefit Matanya's Hope. Flossmoor Community Church 9:00 AM to 3:00 PM.

This will be a HUGE charity sale to benefit Matanya's Hope. 

We have been collecting new donated designer and other clothing for the past year! There will be tons of great household items, furniture and antiques and collectibles. All is priced to sell!  Incredible bargins!

Doors open at 9 am for a $2 Early Bird donation.  Offered only to customers!!!

General public admitted at 9:30 



Performing Arts

Saturday April 5, 2008
Governor's State University - Center for the Performing Arts

In conjunction with the African Children's Choir from South Africa - the Maasai Buffalo Dance and Cultural Change Group from Kenya East Africa will be singing and dancing in the Hall of Governor's at Governor’s State University in University Park, Illinois. Performances will begin at 4:30 pm and will end after the close of the African Children’s Choir.

This famous troupe has danced before the president of Kenya numerous times, has performed for Senator Barak Obama and numerous other dignitaries from around the world. Their award winning performances have been widely televised. Members of the troupe have been selected by film makers from around the world to depict Maasai life in the plains of Kenya, East Africa.

Here for a short period of time, the Maasai Buffalo Dance and Cultural Change Group has made it their mission to educate others on the plight that Kenya children and their families face through the use of music, dance and actual tribal and animal footage from their homeland.
• Authentic Maasai Beadwork (necklaces, bracelets, belts)
• Personal photographs with members of the colorful Maasai troupe
• Authentic Maasai baskets and woodwork
• Authentic Maasai handbags and other ornamentations  

his page can be used as a news page, a staff page or any other page format you require. Sample text: Our company International Inc. sees very bright prospects in Asia, and its revenue in Malaysia may grow by as much as 12.5% this year. This is your chance to see Chicago's largest Internet company in action. The Open House was just another way to say thank you to all of the people, both inside the company and out, who have helped make us Chicago's undisputed leader in products.



WBEZ World View

Thursday  April 24, 2008
Matanya’s Hope and several members of the Maasai Buffalo Dance and Cultural Change Group will be featured guests of Jerome McDonald and Chicago’s Public Radio’s GLOBAL ACTIVISM SERIES WBEZ WORLDVIEW

When the Stark family first visited a village in rural Kenya they were stunned to find there were only two children attending high school. Two years later, the village has 30 students. We'll find out how the group Matanya's Hope is offering opportunities to young people in Kenya in our Global Activism series.

Click here to Download the audio MP3 file



Visit to Victory Academy 2007

While listening to the radio this summer I heard a wonderful piece about a special organization called Matanya’s Hope. As I was preparing for my own trip to Kenya in a couple months, I was moved by Michelle Stark’s story and decided I wanted to sponsor a young lady attending school in Kenya. After corresponding through email, Michelle had a wonderful idea. She wanted me to visit the school and meet the young lady I was going to sponsor in Africa. At first this seemed like a fine idea. Why shouldn’t I get on a plane and fly to Kenya and visit the Victory Academy in Nkubu? However, as more people here in the U.S. heard of my planned school visit, they warned me it was too dangerous and not to make the effort. I myself was soon convinced this visit was not going to work because I was traveling alone and this was my first trip to Africa. Michelle was patient with my fears and hesitations. 

Arriving in Africa all my worries were put to rest. The trip was so easy it was as though I was being escorted by angels. I met with a group of volunteers and off I went to complete work on land and animal conservation in the Samburu area. After two weeks in the field, I returned to Nairobi feeling more confident in myself and my decision to make a trip to the Victory Academy. The Victory Academy is a primary school that provides classes for kindergarten through 8th grade. It has a sleeping dorm for boys and one for girls to allow them to stay at the school full time.   

I contacted the school and a ride was arranged for me within minutes. I was picked up and escorted to the town of Nkubu. We arrived about 6 PM and I met with Julius Gatobu, the founder of Victory Academy. He has so much pride in the school and in his students it was a pleasure to meet him after exchanging emails. Julius and his family shared their food and their home with me. Even though I was a complete stranger, they treated me as a close friend. They made me feel welcome and comfortable though I was far from my home. When we arrived at the school the students were still in class studying and preparing for a big exam the next day. The teachers were staying late and providing extra assistance for each pupil. I was so impressed that the older students were working so hard. Julius explained that the upper classes had an important exam the next day and they were having one last study session. Julius went on to tell me that Victory Academy always ranks first or second when compared to all other schools in the area, even the ones with more resources than Victory Academy. The teachers and students take education very seriously.  

That first night I was escorted from class to class. The teachers were introduced and the children sang songs for me. When I met Stella Kendi, the young lady I sponsor, I was very impressed. She was brave and came to the front of her class and led us all in a song. She has a beautiful voice and a lovely spirit. I think she was a little embarrassed with all the fuss we made of her and that her sponsor was here to visit her, but she handled it well. Stella is in the 8th grade and she is preparing for exams to enter secondary school. Her family situation is difficult. Her father has been ill for a long time and he is not able to help support his family. Stella’s mother must take care of her father and try to earn money as well. Most of the money must go to medical expenses. That leaves Stella in a situation if she did not have a sponsor, she may not be able to move on and attend secondary school. It’s not like school in America where public education is free and accessible to all children. In Kenya, secondary school costs money which is used for housing, food, a uniform, school supplies and teacher salaries. I hope that my sponsorship of Stella eases the burden on her family and makes it possible for her to continue her education. After being in Kenya for just three weeks it was obvious to me that an education for Stella, or any young lady, is imperative to her future. 

On my second day I was able to meet with the entire school of children, about 100, and greet all the teachers. I was welcomed in their morning prayers and through their songs. I cannot tell you how special they made me feel, as though I was someone important, someone to be made a fuss over. That morning I learned that several students living at the school had previously been living on the street and that some students had lost one or both parents to HIV AIDS. These children are now able to live at the Victory Academy and attend school. They have been given hope for the future. Julius kept reminding the students people very far away in America were thinking of them, loving them and praying for them. His point was though some of these children don’t have family in Africa, they are in the hearts of many in America.  

My favorite part of the trip was the opportunity I had to take Stella into town and buy her what she needed. I love to shop and how fun it was to buy someone things they really need! I got her new shoes, a new bag, new bedding, toiletries, pens, pencils, notebooks, all the things a young lady needs to have for school. I could have shopped all day, but when we asked Stella if she needed anything else she could not think of a single item. After filling the car with her purchases, in total I think I spent around $50. It seemed like so little to me, but I think the experience made her happy. 

I am so thankful to the school, to Julius, to the teachers and students of Victory Academy for sharing their time and their lives with me. I wanted to make them feel special by making the visit, but in the end, it was all of them that made me feel special. This is a memory I will treasure for the rest of my life and I am thankful that I have the opportunity to be a sponsor and support the work of Matanya’s Hope.

 Amanda Schulze Chicago, Illinois



Mission Trip

Summer of 2008
Spend two glorious weeks with us in Kenya where you will meet Matanya's children first hand. You will have the opportunity to work in the field and to explore the vast animal kingdom during our many  professionally guided safari outings! This trip offers the unique  opportunity of living with some of the most loving and hospitable families of rural Kenya. You will learn customs and culture first  hand through this experience. Amongst our work with the school  children, you will also have the opportunity to raise funds and join forces with the small community of Matanya to rebuild some of the huts that our children live in which crumble with the slightest touch.

For those who prefer the privacy of a hotel life, accommodations are  available throughout this mission. Please inquire about package rates.

If you sponsor a child thru Matanya's Hope we will be sure that you have plenty of time to enjoy each other's company. Opportunities  abound for photography, journalism, film-making, prayer, agriculture,  teaching and more Let us know your interest. You will not leave this experience the same!

You will meet some members of Kenya's most profound cultural tribe:  the Maasai. Through a combined effort of Matanya's Hope and the  Maasai Buffalo Dancers, you will be sure to have a very personal and  eye opening experience as you and the group spend intimate one on one time with members of this dynamic cultural group.

Approx cost for land and air travel: $5000 for two week 2 person room  occupancy. Discounts may be available for families traveling with children. Includes your meals during time in Kenya.
Please contact us if your are interested on embarking upon this life  changing mission. Contact Information Here


Rebuild a Home Program

Home rebuilt belongs to Paul Gachiri, student in the Matanya's Hope Program. 

After seeing the unstable conditions of Matanya's Hope student: Paul Gachiri's home, his sponsors, Barbara and Marvin Hamburg volunteered to have his shelter rebuilt.  Mr. Mugo, member of the Board of Directors of Matanya's Hope in Kenya, volunteered to oversee the project and has provided photos along the way to take us through the process.  Paul Gachiri and his father were active participants in the entire building process as it is the philosophy of Matanya's Hope: to TEACH our students to be self sufficient is a much better gift than to simply hand out supplies, food and clothes. 

Paul now has a safe and sound structure to live in and do his studies.  He also has skills that he can pass on to and share with other community members as a result of this educational building experience.

If you should have any questions about the Rebuild a Home project, please contact Michelle Stark at Matanya's Hope: (708) 822-HOPE (4673) or [email protected]

Below are some photos from the project:

Click here to see a video of the completed home.


Matanya's Hope is now on MySpace


Water basin Update

March 8, 2007 - Matanya's Hope is pleased to announce the purchase of 12 rainwater storage tanks. Each tank holds up to 3200 liters of rainwater. We are currently taking donations for rainwater storage tanks to be installed during the two 2008 summer missions.3200 Liter (over 700 gallons) Rainwater Storage Tanks: $350 each (This size will serve a 2 - 3 person family sufficiently during times of drought) 5000 Liter (1,087 gallons) Rainwater Storage Tanks:
$650 each (This size will serve up to a 5 person family sufficiently during times of drought)