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  1. 1. August 2014 FICCS (Foundation for International Cardiac & Children’s Services) Nairobi, Kenya FICCS NEWSLETTER Changing Lives in Kenya ESCAPING EARLY MARRIAGE Celestine Mainka (pictured below with FICCS team at her home), a member of the Shompole Group Ranch Maasai in Magadi, Kenya, is a 16- year old girl ready to be married off for a bridal fee. Celestine has been on a FICCS scholarship for four years and the thought of this happening to her was unbearable. A short visit to her home in Magadi in May resulted in the father agreeing to send his daughter to Nairobi to be trained by FICCS in hopes that she can return and help the family. She is the first of many girls that FICCS will help to break the generational curse of early marriages. Celestine recently revealed that her sister, 20, was married off at her age and now has two kids and is a third wife. Celestine desperately did not want this to happen to her and the glow on her face and the desire in her eyes shows that she is not only working with FICCS for her personal benefit, she is now the hope for all the Maasai girls and their mothers who desperately do not want their girls to live a life of servitude like they had to endure. Our$vision$is$to$help$foster$the$ development$of$healthcare$and$ educational$services$in$Kenya,$focusing$ on$the$needs$of$women$and$children.$ “I do not want to get married, I am only 16 years old. I want to learn more and be a good example for the other girls in my community (Shompole). Celestine Mainka, Magadi HARDSHIPS FOR MAASAI GIRLS • Fetching water and firewood • Cooking for the family • Early marriage • Taking care of siblings/newborns • Not allowed to inherit family items • Entertaining Morans (young men waiting to be adults/spreads HIV) • Herding and milking animals • Limited school attendance “EVERY 15 SECONDS A WOMAN IS BATTERED”
  2. 2. August 2014 Nairobi, Kenya MY SECOND CHANCE AT LIFE “Thank'you'FICCS'and'Dr.'Patel'for'coming'to' Kenya'and'saving'my'life.'After'having'a' heart'attack'I'knew'I'could'not'afford' treatment'and'I'would'not'be'able'to'go'back' to'work'and'take'care'of'my'family.'Today,' thanks'to'Dr.'Patel,'I'am'back'to'work'and' doing'my'chores.”' Mary Ndengo used to get sick all the time. A diabetic, she has been admitted to the hospital numerous times, however, in 2008; she began to have breathing problems and knew that something was terribly wrong. Mary has been keen about her health and thought she would always have the answers. After a visit to the hospital, tests showed that her heart muscles were very weak and she needed to be referred to another hospital that could cater to her needs. She was then referred to The Karen Hospital and several advanced tests concluded that in order to regain her health, she would need to have a CRTD, a pacemaker. As a nurse she makes very little money and the hospital in Nyeri is not capable of doing the procedure. So Mary was left with a major decision, she could try to raise the money, nearly one million Ksh or simply do like most Kenyans and wait to die. But today was the day God was looking out for Mary. In April 2010, Mary finally got the one gift she so desperately was waiting for, a pacemaker. A pacemaker alone can cost more than the actual surgery itself. Mary was operated on by Dr. Patel, Chairman and Founder of FICCS, and Dr. Dan Gikonyo, The Karen Hospital, and thus ended her struggles to breath and a new lease on life. Up until that point, Mary could not work, she could not do her daily chores and not to mention the breathing problems she was having. Just walking outside for fresh air was a problem. Mary is back to work as a nurse 54 East Africans have Received FREE Surgeries 150 Women and Children Received Dental Care “How am I going to pay for heart surgery?” Mary Ndengo, Nyeri CHANGING LIVES IN KENYA ONE GIRL AT A TIME WWW.FICCS.NET
  3. 3. August 2014 Nairobi, Kenya FICCS WOMEN’S CENTER Building Strong Women Building Strong Families Building Strong Communities The Women’s Center facilities and programs: • Health Training– Weekly classes • Fitness Center – Full functioning gym • Library – Weekly classes/career development • Kitchen – Girls learn healthy cooking habits • Computers – All girls must have basic skills • Sewing – To provide income generating opportunities • After School – Tutoring and nutrition for students • Counseling – Teaching girls how to mentor other girls The Women’s Center is designed to provide a safe and secure place for women and girls in the slums of Nairobi to learn, grow and just be themselves. Our goal is to eliminate obstacles that traditionally face women in Africa and give them an opportunity to develop through classroom and skills based training. The Women’s Center opened in May 2014 and provides health, life and vocational skills training to enable young women and girls to acquire the skills necessary to be successful in life. Other programs include scholarships, environmental improvement and outreach. Fitness Classes Improve Self-Esteem Health and Nutrition Classes Boost Confidence HYGIENE DURING MENSTRUATION • Choose your method of sanitation • Change regularly • Wash yourself regularly • Don’t use soaps or vaginal hygiene products • Use the right washing technique • Discard your used sanitary product properly • Deal with a pad rash with care • Use only one method of sanitation during your periods • Be ready with on-the-go stuff during your period Center Royal Business Centre (Faulu Building/Top floor) Location: Outer Ring Road, Kariobangi
  4. 4. August 2014 Nairobi, Kenya FATE DETERMINED OVER A CUP OF TEA “THIS COULD NOT HAPPEN TO ME” One day while in school, Wangeci’s parents tried to sell her to an old man who was very rich. Unfortunately, she knew nothing about the plan, which had already been decided. Wangeci’s parents told her to pack her bags because she was going on a trip. After a long journey she was taken to a room and locked inside so she could not escape. She did not know that her parents were at a separate house dining with the old man as they were preparing to execute the plan. The girl’s fate was determined over a cup of tea. By Marcy Chege, Wangeci’s best friend 5 STEPS TO A PAIN FREE BACK STAY FIT - Stretching and strengthening your back and abdominal muscles reduces risks of back problems MAINTAIN A HEALTHY WEIGHT – Obesity is the primary cause of back pain STOP SMOKING – Research indicates that smoking reduces blood flow to the vertebrae and smokers lose bone faster leading to back problems LIGHTEN YOUR LOAD – Do not carry heavy items and always bend your knees DEVELOP BACK HEALTHY HABITS – Take pressure off your back everyday 75% of girls with low self-esteem engage in negative activities such as drinking and FOR MORE INFORMATION CONTACT US Stacy Harris/Editor Call us at 0713-480-736 or 0703-700-766 Visit our website at Visit our office in Westlands or visit our Women’s Center in Kariobangi (Outer Ring Road) WWW.FICCS.NET smoking Foundation for International Cardiac & Children’s Services 1010 Sheridan Road Wilmette, IL 60091