My name is Moses Osoro. I want to THANK YOU and tell you our story. My wife Emily and I grew up in rural Kenya, Africa. I was raised in a polygamous family consisting of 10 brothers and 8 sisters altogether. My parents were very poor, illiterate peasant subsistence farmers. Because of this, hunger, disease, illiteracy, abject poverty, and hopelessness were not a surprise to us. We ate from hand to mouth and if lucky would eat two times a day; but it was often one meal a day, mostly at night with really nothing to save for the next day. School was far away and we walked barefoot over long distances everyday with no breakfast hoping that education would one day deliver us from these problems.
I remember putting on my first pair of shoes when I joined missionary high school, after a well-wisher from the school accepted to take care of my school fee and other school needs. This was a Pastor called James, who injected hope back in my life by always stating that besides education we needed to have integrity, honesty, generosity, and kindness as the foundation of our future life. He also stated that “if you want to go far you go with others but if you want to go quickly you go it alone”. I have kept these words in my heart to date and they have formed the pillar of my philosophy in life.
After school, I got employed as a group leader in my division where I grew up as a child. Armed with hope, resilience, and drive to live and fight on, and inspired by the words of Pastor James, I declared that life was a journey that needed everyone’s effort. I needed to fight on because it was the only choice. Disease had created pain on us, illiteracy created hopelessness, and hunger created indignity. Life was not worth it anymore for the fainthearted, but I soldiered on. I made friends, got married to Emily and started a family, but again my nucleus family was just a small cog in a larger wheel. Besides, diseases were still afflicting us, hunger still hurting, hopelessness and indignity caused by general poverty was still in our faces, threatening to stop us from achieving our life goals.
I loved helping people based on my Christian faith, so my wife and I recognized and organized small groups of women and children being the most affected, assisted them with farm inputs, and made small merry-go-rounds. These monthly contributions helped them feed their families. Though it was not enough, at least something was being done. We did this because we were there; we went through it and knew the feeling of all that they were experiencing.
We never gave up hope, and Emily and l continued praying and helping our families with the little we could. Through friends in church I was introduced to a man who would later give me an opportunity to live in the United States of America. America: the land of one more chance, a first world country, and a country with a face of humanity, kindness, and generosity. I came to America, went to college and became a nurse, Emily became an accountant, and we lived the American dream. Even with all this we could still hear distressed voices thousands of miles away calling for help. These were the voices of our own brothers, sisters, friends and neighbors we left behind, choked by diseases, hunger, illiteracy, and general poverty, crying for help - help that we needed when living the same life they are experiencing now. We prayed every day for the Lord to let us be a tool to help create a small difference in these people’s lives. We sent them the little money we had to help reduce their pain and keep their children in school; we offered school fees, uniforms, learning materials, and food as well. Sometimes we could not pay some of our own bills just to help these families survive. It was difficult but satisfying to hear the words “thank you very much may God bless you” from them. We believed that they advocated for us before God and this helped us move on. More and more calls kept coming crying for help, and after some time we realized that we could not reach all the people. We were overwhelmed; we had to find a way that was going to give us relief and them too. Besides, we realized we were creating dependency and needed to encourage and develop self-reliance if we really wanted to continue helping. We prayed to God to give us an idea that would create an avenue for these families to fend for themselves sustainably, and that is how ONE CHILD ONE HEN was born. Our goal is to create a community-based infrastructure that would give the women and children power to face these challenges with confidence, while appreciating the power of joining hands together and forming one formidable force that would work towards the goal of reducing the levels of these problems, if not eliminate them. For close to two years now, we have had an opportunity to collaborate with the Faith Presbyterian Church family to make this vision a reality. During this time we have registered ONE CHILD ONE HEN as a 501c(3) non-profit corporation, meaning that all contributions made to the project are tax deductible. We have established a board of directors that runs the program and is available to answer your questions at all times. Lastly we have put up a website: onechildonehen.org, and we invite you to visit and see our progress at any time.
Emily and l want to sincerely and kindly thank the entire Faith Presbyterian Church family for listening to our story and taking a strong interest in making this vision a successful mission. We continue praying that we will all walk this journey together with you to continue helping our brothers and sisters who have not had the opportunities that God has offered us. We want to thank you for every single day you have collected cans and bottles, packing them nicely, tucking them in your vehicles and bringing them to church. It’s only through acts of kindness, humility, love and generosity to humanity that you have continued to do all this. Thank you once more. We also pray that as we embark on this journey of faith, let’s continue to base it on our integrity, kindness, generosity and humility as the foundation and guiding principal of our mission.