A Closer Look
Tumaini International is passionate about making a difference and providing hope to AIDS orphans and other vulnerable children (OVC), families, and communities in Kenya (East Africa) in four critical areas; child sponsorship, education, healthcare, and socioeconomic development.
· AIDS orphans are a subset of Orphaned and Vulnerable Children (OVC). We recognize that although our primary focus is AIDS orphans, there are many other children in need, which, as funds become available, we will support other OVCs as well.
· We are a Grassroots Organization. Our infrastructure allows for everyone to be included and be a part of the team. More importantly, we are accessible to our donors and sponsors, as well as guardians of the children that we sponsor. We have managed to be an organization without sacrificing an organic nature. We are governed by a volunteer Board of Directors who meet biannually in Southern California to provide oversight to the President/CEO along with a Regional Board.
· A key element of our outreach is Child Sponsorship. This method allows the sponsor to be in a direct relationship with their sponsored child. Lasting relationships are established through letter writing, photo exchanges and home visits by the donors and sponsors.
· We work in Partnership with others. Our outreach is a partnership based endeavor that includes sponsors, guardians, and the larger community. We believe that our role is to come alongside the orphans’ guardians and their community for maximum wellness and holistic development. We focus on providing help with the "big ticket" items like school fees, tuition, medical bills and food. By doing so, all recipients maintain dignity while preventing the over-dependency of an outside agency.
· Our approach is Extended Family Care. We do not run orphanages or a foster care program. Instead, we encourage the surviving extended family members to care for their orphaned relatives in their homes and provide assistance in that setting. This approach allows the children to live in their familiar environment and limit the challenges of adjusting to new a setting. Through this model, most children live with their grandparents, aunts, uncles, older siblings and sometimes even neighbors. This helps to make the transition from sponsorship to adulthood as seamless as possible.
· We encourage Vision Trips to expose sponsors and potential donors to the needs and value of our work. Instead of just telling stories about AIDS orphans, we encourage sponsors and donors to make a vision trip to see the work first hand. This helps the sponsors connect better with their sponsored children, see the context in which the child lives, and build solid relationships with each other.
· Our purpose is Holistic Development, focusing on both the physical and spiritual needs of the children. As a faith-based agency, we strive in balancing the child's spiritual needs along with their material needs seeing that both are crucial for wholeness and wellness. This individual holistic care then extends to the family, friends, and larger community.
· Through sponsorship, we Empower Orphaned Children to become all they can be. Such children who previously had little or no hope, develop into empowered community members, ready to make a difference in their own lives, their families, their local community and the world.