Karibu Nyumbani Blog

Welcome to our blog.
The blog details daily life at Karibu Nyumbani and has regular updates on our work in helping out children, the progress of the project and all our new developments.
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Karibu Nyumbani is constantly developing, with new infrastructure and diverse projects to enhance the life of our children and our wider community. This section includes all our latest ideas. 


 Col 3 v 1-3

"Since you have been raised to new life with Christ, set your sights on the realities of heaven, where Christ sits in the place of honour at God's right hand. Think about the things of heaven, not the things of earth. For you died to this life, and your real life is hidden with Christ in God." 

  When I wrote my last blog called "A Mother's heart," I had no idea what my next few months would hold and that on my return to Tanzania I would be saying my final goodbye to my own mother. My last 3 months have held moments when I have felt touches of Heaven followed by great loss. I would like to share some thoughts to encourage any others going through loss of a dear one. God bless you and give you courage in your grief. In Jesus, we are close.


It's never been easy to say good bye,

But this time, I knew it might be the last.

Earlier, on silent retreat, in the stillness.

As if being prepared,

Heaven took my breath away-

Peering through the veil.

My plans changed, hearing you were weak

And I had the joy of a whole month by your side

You were quieter than before

As if already gazing into heaven

Knowing that the one

Whose "banner

over you is love."

Was calling you,

You were fragile and yet inwardly strong

Peaceful and Calm.

Never wanting to be a burden

"I'm sorry "You'd say

And yet for me it was joy,

To hold you and love you.

Not wanting to leave your bed-side,

But the one calling you was calling me too.

He urged "Let go, she's in my arms"

So, trusting, I kissed you,

So beautiful and smiling

A grace moment

Peace in knowing

He loves you more.

Not two weeks passed

Now across the world

Happy children playing

Preparations for celebrations.

I ran to receive a call-

My brother's voice and his tears.

You slipped through the veil

At Peace- at Rest

Deep tears welled up, as well as grace

Knowing you're his.

In a world of orchids, bougainvillea

Mangoes and melons

As a child you left your familiar world

and still a child at heart

You've left ours

You're in His everlasting garden-

Complete Joy,

In His presence,

Where I am too, when I come away with Him

Within the veil.

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first impressions lasting memories....

In August & September 2016, I was fortunate to visit my birth country Tanzania. Where can I start to tell you about my visit this summer? I guess I should start by first telling you how my heart is filled with admiration for Karibu Nyumbani ophans as well as its co-founders. Who I saw as good examples of God’s many miracles.  I do regret that my visit to them was brief. However, after spending time at the orphanage, it was obvious that I will be returning there. The orphanage first impression, has left a warm, tagging and lasting memories in me that I will forever be drawn back there to see and support them. The warm welcome that even Sarah, my 6 yrs old daughter felt from the children left her with lasting memories and lessons no mother or school could have ever enforced better! The orphanage made all of us feel so welcome and at home. The happiness and acceptance from the children left me feeling loved unconditionally. I keep praying for continuous revelation from God on what he wants me to do to support his wonderful work there. As the visit made it clear that without the support and generous contributions the project receives– whether through volunteer’s time, financial donations, fundraising or emotional support and prayers it won’t be possible to sustain it.

Since my return I have done nothing but think about my visit. I feel like a piece of me remained at the orphanage. After weeks of prayers and personal reflection, it’s clear that my task is to get my local community, friends, family and university to join forces with Karibu Nyumbani and make a huge difference in the lives of the children living there even if it’s just helping them spread the word of the work they do or the support they need.  

It’s not a secret the orphanage has already given a small group of Tanzanian highly vulnerable children the chance to a bright new life. A life based on care and Gods love, healthy bodies, and minds crammed with knowledge and excitement. I truly do hope I can find purpose in my own life by helping children in desperate need for support. The co-founders- Fiona Hendy, Mama Easter and the other ladies working at the orphanage have given up their lives selflessly to help the children daily needs. However, they can’t do this job alone! They need volunteers to go there and help with the children, they also need financial donations and fundraising support to keep the project developing to help more children. It’s evident that work already done at Karibu Nyumbani is impressive! The fantastic facilities that the children sleep in, live, eat and play are clean and safe. The future need is now a decent school for them.


From the many generosities extended to them combined by hard work invested by Fiona and Ester -  A new plot has been purchased and they are looking for support building a small school for the children. the new school that will not only educate orphans but hopefully open its doors to children at the nearby village. I believe this is a fantastic vision. One that needs prayer support and fundraising. Please I urge you if you have never considered supporting a worthily cause. I urge you to consider Karibu Nyumbani orphans to be the benefactor of your kind charity….

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building the new Kitchen COLLAGE - Copy






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Three young ladies from our village after a rigorous month of teaching from Ludmila, are now busily making bags for us and earning a small wage for their families. Since November they have made 100 bags and last week they made there way to England. If you are interested to help us to sell these bags and others in the future please write to me at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.    Bags - Copy

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P1000787 - Copy

As many of you will know at the end of April we opened our little shop and it has been busy every day with our customers coming to buy milk and yoghurt. Ludmila’s heart has always been to teach women from the village with no income. This too is something that has had to wait it’s time. Now she has 3 very lovely young girls who are learning to make bags and different items that we can export in order to raise funds for the children. We would appreciate your prayers for this venture.


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A BIG THANK YOU TO LINDA (from England) for the desks you bought us “we are able to put our own things in the drawers!” says Queenie!DSC09006

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DSC08925In a few days we will be lighting our own Bio Gas! It is a very simple system using things we already had here and a little more.We are hoping to save at least the price of 2 gas bottles a month by using our cow, and pig manure to make gas. (picture shows Cosmas and Lusakelo filling the tank with manure.)

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IMG_2372We are proud to introduce you to our first mother pig. She surprised us with 8 piglets at the end of August. Her sister followed a week later by giving birth to a further 7 piglets!

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This month we have had a new driver for our Lorry business. He has been able to get work every day- For us this is near to a miracle! NO, EMMANUEL IS NOT THE NEW DRIVER !DSC08611

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When I got back to Tanzania, top of my list was to get a new vehicle. Not something we could have thought about doing without the help of so many of you, especially St Edmunds Parish, Abingdon and Mary Harrison ( Recent Volunteer) and your family and friends God bless you all.7 July Tanz, new bus-001

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Planting Grass?!! More rain please Lord!

 Expecting the rains to fall at any minute all hands were on deck carrying the heavy bags of soil and grass. The area between the new houses and the children's play area needed more soil and grassing planting. About 20 lorries of soil was carried from near by, and a lorry load of grass needed to planted within a week! It was a big job!! It is one we will always remember. We started the first day with the help of our watchman and young helper Niko, and our 2 faithful village builders, not knowing that the job was in fact going to be finished by me, Ludmila, Gitty, Theresia and the children! Niko  needed to go back to his studies, and our watchman disappeared( that's not a story for the Blog!)






 Please pray that the rains


continue throughout April and


May otherwise it will be hard for the farmers in Tanzania.


(Not only for us)- THANK YOU!


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Time of Rejoicing!

Almost two months have past since we last put up any blog!, It has been a full time. Mostly preparing for our Official Opening Day. You know how you can prepare so much that you get to a special day and wonder how you are going to have the strength to get through it. It was like that for us, Ester and Ludmila and some of the children were suffering with Malaria too, so we prayed for God to take over and anoint our day. After a week of rain, the sun shone, tents set up, food prepared, more than 100 friends came, music playing, speeches made, TV, news papers and radio reporters, and for me the windows of Heaven seem to open and there was a wonderful sense of God smiling at our Home for His Children.dec website 14

Many of our little community were working all over the house on the day so were not in the group photo, But all the children stood at the front with Ester and sang to all the gathering!dec website 141

Not only did we have the Official Opening of our new house but Bianca and Queenie were also baptized, and members of the Agape Community traditionally stood as God Mothers God parents for our children.


For all our friends from England and Czech and other parts of the world who would have loved to be with us, we felt carried by your prayers and close to you in the Spirit.

So may we take this opportunity to say again thank you all for your prayers. And we pray for you that these few weeks before Christmas will not be too busy, but even if you are, you will sense "His everlasting Arms Carrying you!"

With love from us all


COW, From Upper Room Prayer Group St. Albans!

We are so happy to say that Hannah, our gift from the Upper Room has recently had her boy calf, and he is sharing his mother’s milk with all our children and producing Yoghurt which we are selling to our villagers! This is my little morning job, and I love it!! Thank you again Upper Room.


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Elias, a very good friend to our children and trained social worker is coming monthly to give the children an opportunity to chat, Even Shangwe who cannot talk properly yet is being heard!dec website 142-001 - Copy


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Tumehamia! Mshukuru Mungu ( We have moved in !)

During the first week of this month we started the big move! All the children, Aunties and Uncle, were so happy to have more space especially the children, who taking so much delight in each having their own cupboard. We are arranging for an official opening early December but we had our own little celebration!             October website 20141


Special visitors this month included; Brigitte-

October website 20142

- Our new volunteers Gitti and Theresia from Germany, it is so good to have their help and we have started the Nursery again, BUT NOW WE HAVE A CLASSROOM!Collages2


 -Pavel from Czech Republic - he has spent years in Tanzania drilling wells and he is hoping to do the same for us! PLEASE PRAY IT IS SUCCESSFUL



October website 20143

We are very happy to have Queenie here with us. We have known her Grandma for a little while, and she was so happy that we now have more space for this little one who has no home.



We want to thank especially all those who helped us to buy our Water Filter. It was getting really hard to boil our water. So with the move we put the filter in place this week. So thank you Jan and Patrick, your Grand children and prayer group!DSC06696


We can have clean water all the time!


Lord give us thankful hearts for the smallest gifts, and let us see your wonders all around us, You never cease to think about us and provide for our every need.


God bless you all for your prayers and love.




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Even if the olive crop fail I will praise you still! A Month of blessing!

The Old Testament Prophet, Habakkuk, encourages us to Praise God even if things are not looking so good. For all of us this last month will have had some difficulty that may have been hard to trust God for. For me it was to see so much money being spent on water. We are coming to the end of our building project, and it seemed that every penny was running away for water! We have been praying for 9 months for the Water Board  to provide us running water, and yesterday we had water flowing into our home!!!

Bianca, three weeks old, whose mother died two weeks ago, came to join our family yesterday. She is a beautiful little Indian girl!


With our chicks and kittens that arrived this week and cow earlier this month, it surely has been a month of blessings. We give Glory to God!

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A special visit from Fr. Benno Kikudo.

This morning Fr. Benno our local Parish Priest came for breakfast, bringing with him Flora who is the first  member of a committee Fr. Benno is arranging to support Karibu Nyumbani here in our parish. Emmanuel (one of our youngest) was very happy to show our guests around our nearly finished buildings!september website 20143

Visit from the Health and Safety


Yesterday we were very happy to receive three ladies from the Health and safety


health and safety


Ester's good friends from Germany visited us today.. "God bless you all, thank you for your love and the blessing you were in the short time you were with us!"


We continue to Thank God for all of you who love us and pray for us and support us. God bless you all.


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Settling and Developing

As always in life there is a resting and a pushing forward. We have had both over the last few months since I wrote. In March we celebrated our first year here,it has gone so fast! We thank God for our lovely children,  our home, all the friends we have got to know in the village.

[caption id="attachment_1078" align="alignright" width="150"]Fi with all the builders standing in the new dining room to be! Fi with all the builders standing in the new dining room to be!



In January we started to build and it is going forward steadily.The boys and girls houses, kitchen, dining and sitting room are all going to reach head height very soon.


Daflosa and bros (2)


We received our first child from the village, Daflosa, 5 years old. She has 2 brothers who we are helping  as they stay in their home with Aunty and Grand- ma. There situation is very poor.


small nursery - CopyWith the wonderful help of Laura, our Volunteer from Germany, and Chiara, we have been able to start a small nursery for our neighbours children and our own small ones. They are singing, counting and learning a little English. Parents have been so glad to see their children getting used to other children, as some were living very isolated and were not talking yet.

[caption id="attachment_1079" align="alignleft" width="150"]Victor and Faith, New Victor and Faith,
New "Friends WHMT"

A new development has been the of the "Friends of WHMT "( Friends of WHMT) here in Tanzania. It has happened so spontaneously as. A phone call to say, " Do you need anything for your children?". Or and email to say "Could we come and bring our child to celebrate her first birthday with you all?". Next week a group of children from a near parish are going to come  and work in our garden and prepare some games for the children for the day.


I will to be having a holiday May/June in England  and will also be traveling around different groups to talk about the "Friends of WHMT " in England.  Please pray with us, that the Lord will open hearts to see the great need there is here in our village and in this country. Daflosa's Aunty,Grandmother and 3 children have £40 a month for all their needs! And this is just an average family. They are actually living below the poverty line.









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Contractors agree to build!

DSC_0547Ester and I had the joy of meeting Anton and his son Mateo who agreed to be our Contractors for our new project.They have been building in Tanzania for the last 30 years and have built for many "Religious orders", However they could not start without building permission, which is a long process. So with the help of a Counselor from the District council, Diwani, what could have taken us a year took just 2 weeks so that by the end of this month we were able to sign contracts and start to build.DSC_0513website january 20141website january 20141 (3)

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"knock on" BLESSINGS!

top R agreement of sale top L looking at boundries bottom R view or our house from the land bottom L neighbours new house

A few weeks ago we drew up final agreement with  our neighbor for buying a strip of land. It's about a quarter of an acre and is right next door, just perfect! What's more, our neighbor has already nearly finished building his brick shops with the money that we gave him! It is wonderful to see God's blessings overflowing to our neighbors.


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The WATER situation in our village.

Villagers fetching water from Ester's parent's home Villagers fetching water from Ester's parent's home

"Commit your ways to the Lord and He will direct your path."Prov 3 v 6

With our new building project on the horizon we have very deliberately given all our plans to our Faithful Lord.

We were inspired in Mbeya by the neighbors fetching water from Ester's family courtyard. They have a Government mains tap and share the bill with their neighbors who pay 50 Tanzanian shillings per bucket (10p).  Having in mind to do the same, we went to see the Chairman of our village and heard about the long standing dept hanging over the village, which has meant a cut in the water supply. The board of people responsible for collecting the money from the villagers, "some how or other", lost the equivalent of £3000 (a typical problem). This sort of amount is not be easily paid back, which means that within a few weeks some of the old and very poor in our village would not have had water. There are two "spring wells" in our village but, because of the cut, have been over used and are close to drying up. However the day after our meeting with the chairman, we joined the village discussion and offered to pay part of the dept, which has meant the immediate reopening of the tap. This means we can now arrange for a pipe from the centre of our village to our house and not three kilometers away. So we are thankful for the inspiration we had in Mbeya and how the Lord made a way for our neighbors too.



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Foundation to roof in THREE WEEKS!

Ester having a go at laying bricks

It has been a wonderful November. Our building team have worked so fast and faithfully. (We had been promised in Isaiah)








[caption id="attachment_571" align="alignright" width="300"] We have a posh roof!

"Faithful is He who


has called you


and He


will do it!"


(1Thess 2)


I have been driving Ester all over Dar es Salaam, shopping for the builders. Carrying all sorts of things on the roof of the car, even six meter pipes, for the plumbing!

Driving has been another experience all together, there are no rules on the road at all. Once I was in the middle of a jam with three Lorries all tooting loudly- and then 10 men ran to push me off the road when I could not start the car! ( when I first arrived in Tanzania I thought I would never drive!)

[caption id="attachment_564" align="alignleft" width="300"] Fi at the Reception window.

Now we are at the stage


of plastering, painting,


tiling, electricity fitting,


 plumbing, windows and doors.


So there is still a lot of work.

[caption id="attachment_565" align="alignright" width="300"] Ludmila making plans in the Kitchen.




 During this time, Ludmila has been busy – it seems as if everyone is realizing that we are going and she has been inundated with sewing for the students and community members at Agape.



[caption id="attachment_575" align="alignleft" width="151"] Augustino with Bonadventure, Isadori's son.

I must mention a very important person, Augustino- the grounds man at Agape. He has  been our watchman for the last month, and his presence on our land has been invaluable ! Last week, because of lack of water in our village, villagers were coming to see if we had water and Augustino had to remove the taps from our water tanks Anything could go walking if you don't keep a close eye!

[caption id="attachment_566" align="alignright" width="300"] Harvester and other guests from England for village lunch on our land!



Last week we  also had the joy of receiving the Harvesters    ( a group of men who have been doing ministry in East Africa for the last 10 years) to Karibu Nyumbani- including my dad!  On the same day we had a visit from two guys from England, friends of Sabastian, who have chosen our little village to set up a chicken business. They were here for only one week and built a chicken hut. They met with some of the women of our village and have set them up to run the business themselves. So we will not need to go far for our eggs! (Until we start growing them ourselves of course!) We are looking forward to the mutual support we will have from this team from England.

[caption id="attachment_569" align="alignleft" width="300"] Fi can't believe it is really happening.

PLEASE PRAY! That the building will continue to move swiftly, we would love to be in for Christmas!

With the move we will need to be secure- Please pray that we find our own Watchmen.

As soon as we move in we will be open to receiving children. Please pray for this too.

God bless you - Fi

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Ludmila using her tailoring skills to measure the land!

This last month has been full of activity.

A surveyor came to measure our land to make sure that the town council have no future plans to build a road through it at a later date. Good news - our land is now on the map as “religious” land and cannot be touched in the future. Some not so brilliant news is that it only measures 2 acres- not 3!  We love it even still! We have a great design for our houses and now Kahindi is finishing the plan for the whole site.  With this completed we can start.

Please pray with us that the building starts in the next month!!


Since the last post Ester, Ludmila and I spent a week in Tanga with the sisters of Charity. A week to catch vision, and to have time to pray for the project.  Tanga is a beautiful place a bit like the midlands and Ludmila said rather like her home in Czech too. So it was a very a refreshing time and the sisters fed us really well.

After a busy 12 days, visiting Social welfare, visits to land etc. Ester was needed by Agape to help out with students from Germany who had come to do voluntary work in orphanages all over Tanzania.


[caption id="attachment_534" align="alignleft" width="150"] Ludmila with Tumaini and Maria Stella

Ludmila and I took advantage of this time to visit an orphanage in Dodoma run by the Ursuline Sisters. Another eye-opening experience! Eight sisters with about 45 children aged 3 - 15yrs.  The relationship between Sr.Modesta (Sister over all in charge of the children) and the children was so beautiful; it made for a peaceful atmosphere. The children had their own rhythm of prayer and work alongside the nuns. Sixteen of the children are HIV+ but all are well and happy. While we were there we made particular friends with the youngest as we were asked to teach the “chukachia”- preschool children each morning.

[caption id="attachment_528" align="alignright" width="150"]fiona reading to children Fiona telling Cinderella in Swahili!

Maria Stella, one of the children was quite a character.  She is one of three sisters, all with the same father, different mother and when the father died they were left with Grandma. Living in a mud hut with no bed made it impossible for them to sleep in a bed when they arrived at the orphanage. Sr. Modesta said that they had to share a bed together for some time before they could get used to sleeping as the other children in their own bed.

Our journey home this last Wednesday was one of our worst journeys! We were pleasantly surprised with the comfort of our seats on our bus, but being one row from the back meant that we were right on top of the wheel! It was like being on a bumper car for 6 hours.

[caption id="attachment_531" align="alignleft" width="300"]Sr. Modesta with children All the children with Sr Modesta in the background!

That reminds me of a very important word I heard before leaving for Africa a few years ago.

Learn to enjoy the ride!  I’ve never been one for enjoying that gut feeling of sliding down a helter skelter. I find walking by faith is a little like that. There are moments when you just don’t know what is going to happen next and having Faith is learning to scream with joy, not fear!!-  Enjoy the ride! We are in HIS Hands!


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