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Friday, March 16, 2012

The Power of Social media - Kenyan Orphanage attack leads to over 50,000 dollars being raised by redditors


Thanks to Jesse D for the link!

Read this amazing Reddit thread of how one man's tragic attack at a Kenyan orphange lead to major funds being raised for the children under his care.

it all started with this plea:
Meet Omari. Two days ago he returned from the hospital after being hacked in the face by a machete defending an orphanage of 35 children by himself. Think we could raise the $2,000 needed for the remainder of the cement/barbed wire wall to keep both him and the children safe?
http://www.reddit.com/r/pics/comments/oye34/meet_omari_two_days_ago_he_returned_from_the/

This is the best part:
As of now, the best way to donate is through www.longonoteducation.org. We will assume that any donation made between now and next week was meant for the Faraja Orphanage in Ngong, Kenya.
Also, remember her? The construction date is scheduled for February 15th!
Edit: In the process of uploading more pictures of the orphanage, but my modem is being very slow. I would also like to add that this orphanage is unlike any I have seen before. The mother of Omari, the sole caretaker of the children (with the help of volunteers), has made multiple efforts to keep the orphanage sustainable. There are dozens of chickens and a small garden which helps feed the 35 children between the ages of 2 and 17. As you can imagine, these efforts are great but not enough to support 35 children everyday.
Edit 2: The wooden fence next to the concrete section of the wall. The goal is to construct a wall the same height as the existing structure, with three feet of barbed wire (three coiled stacked on top of each other) on top.
Edit 3: Omari explained to me that many of the kids are very scared to re-enter the home; scared that the attackers are still inside "waiting with knives". So it was nice to see them playing (and eating oranges) outside in the yard.
Edit 4: I figure the story is worth sharing: After two previous invasions during the week, Omari was relatively certain another would occur. He woke up to the sound of footsteps outside his door, he figured it was his mother taking a few of the boys outside to go to the bathroom. He quickly realized that the footsteps were heavy, and that of more than one person; he then saw a flashlight shine beneath the crack of his door. Being the third time this happened that week, he had already stashed a hammer beside his bed. He grabbed it, and threw it at the first person who entered his room. He hit the person square in the head, and chased the rest out. The following night, the three thugs returned, presumably to avenge their friend. Omari put up a fight but was outnumbered. The last thing he remembers was being struck in the face by the machete. He has been in and out of the hospital since, yet remains positive and confident that the suspects will one day see justice. Until then, I only hope that is courage and strength is felt by all of you. Speaking with him was a very humbling and special experience that I will never forget. I told him I would try my best to help, so this is my effort: Reddit, already donations are pouring in, and I can't thank you enough.
Edit 5: Another picture of a few kids playing with one of their favorite toys. Reddit, twice now, you have nearly brought me to tears. I have never felt so encouraged in my life. Donations are coming in too fast to keep track, so I will update as soon as they seem to slow down. If the donations reach over $2,000, the rest will go towards food and supplies for the children. I will ABSOLUTELY keep all of you updated with the progress.
Edit 6: Many people are asking for proof, the mods have contacted me and I'm working on it. It's 5:03am right now, I haven't slept all night (nor do I plan to), I've been messaging my friends on facebook left and right trying to get the word out, but I never, NEVER, could have imagined the night ending this way. In just a few short hours I will return to the orphanage with by far the BEST news I could ever tell anyone. There will be pictures!
Edit 7: I've sent the mod a picture of myself, reddit name, date, PSU id, and the expired Kenyan residency card I received in 2010 when I first studied abroad. I am literally waiting for the sun to come up so I can run to the orphanage and tell them the INCREDIBLE news. I will take a picture with everyone (Omari will absolutely be present) and return as soon as I can.
Edit 8: Over $9,000 and I'm in a state of shock. I...... Just.....................Thank you.
Edit 9: Over $11,000. It's 6am. In 45 minutes I will RUN to the orphanage. I should be back with pictures in just a few hours. This is the best news I have ever had to privilege to tell anyone, and you are all to thank for it. Also, I am too overwhelmed at the moment, but I will do my best to reply to as many comments/messages/questions as I can.
Edit 10: $44,000!!!!!!!!! REDDIT!!!!! I can hardly breathe. I refreshed the page at least twice to make sure it was real. I cannot believe this. I just came back from the orphanage..... Let's just say many tears were shed, and many hugs were shared. The children were all leaving to school as I arrived, but I will return around 6pm to take a group picture. I am about to upload the picture and video of Omari's thanks. He's been reading all of your comments, he said he'll read every one if it takes him all day. $44,000. Reddit, thank you.
Edit 11: $48,000! This is surreal. Thank you Weebly.com for the $10,000 donation in addition to upgrading our website to Weebly Pro for two free years. Of course, thank you all so much. I must sleep for a bit, but I'll be back!
Edit 12: Who am I kidding I couldn't sleep if I tried. We hit the $50,000 mark! I know by now I sound like a broken record, but thank you Reddit, sincerely.

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