Piece by Piece We All Helped Bring Water To Daylight

Getting water pumping across Daylight School at the turn of a handle was a huge project!


Daylight’s water system was built by hand, piece by piece, by hundreds of dedicated volunteers and staff who decided that our kids deserved clean water.

There are so many people who made this project possible, starting with the builders who hand dug the 60-foot well.


The fundis (Kenyan builders) who hand mixed the cement

20150929_160244and painstakingly climbed down the well to put the bricks in.

The Stillwater Presbyterian team (and Rachel!) that worked alongside Daylight’s staff to construct the water tower and get it level!

The Rochester Team and the Daylight neighbors who spent a day scratching their heads and plotting how to get a massive water container 30 feet in the air with ropes and muscles.
img_9503The volunteers who dug trenches and laid the pipes to get water across our campus.

And of course, YOU! Our partners who give what they can so that our children can have what they need.

And when you see the smiles on their faces, we know it was all worth it.


Meet Elodie: Daylight’s U.S. Fund Development staff

Hi. I’m Elodie, Daylight’s U.S. Fund Development staff. 

Ask me what I do for Daylight and I’ll tell you that, for a few hours a month, I check the P.O. box, process gifts, coordinate donor gratitude and fundraising, support ongoing projects, and attend board meetings.Ask me why I do it and I’ll tell you that I get the honor of reading moving and passionate handwritten notes from you, our donors and supporters. I get the privilege of hearing board members thoughtfully share in the vision of a project started from Nathan and Michael’s friendship. I get to share in the responsibility of telling U.S. friends that Daylight is doing incredible work to grow bright leaders in Kenya and that there is room for others to be a part of it.

For the past year and a half, I have seen from across the world how gifts of all levels help sustain a school and change the lives of its students. Communities are generously pooling their resources to buy desks, bunk beds, and uniforms, open a clinic and build roofs, help us to better care for our teachers, and ensure futures through education.
Equal parts nervous and excited, I’ll be taking my first trip to Africa to see Daylight Kenya in January. I am just one of more than 50 committed supporters that will have traveled to Kenya this year, bringing medical care, dolls, computers, sewing machines, and soccer balls.I have already felt Daylight Kenya’s life and vibrancy from across the globe. I cannot wait to see it up close.


Daylight Isabella Chebet’s Student Story: The Giraffe and the Fox

Giraffe and Fox by Isabella Chebet is a creative retelling of a traditional village story by our Daylight 8th Grader Isabelle Chebet! It is one of many in “Under the Mukusu Tree” a collection of stories written by our 8th grade students at Daylight!

Giraffe and Fox by Isabella Chebet


Long, long ago there lived a giraffe and a fox. They were good friends. Whenever they got time, they would sit under a tree near the stream and pass the day happily talking on different topics, telling jokes and really enjoying each other’s company.

One day, when Fox was roaming around, he saw some beautiful, ripe grapes growing on a farm on the other side of the stream. Unfortunately for him, the stream was wide and deep, so it was not possible for him to cross.

The following day, Fox met Giraffe and told him about the sweet grapes he had seen on the other side of the stream. Giraffe agreed to take Fox across.

After crossing the stream, Giraffe and Fox trotted into the farm and started eating grapes. Fox gobbled down many grapes very quickly and then patting his full stomach, declared that he was so satisfied he must sing.

“I always sing after having my lunch,” Fox announced. “It is my habit.” Giraffe was surprised and pleaded with Fox. “Please, please, my friend. Don’t sing just now. Let me finish eating first. When we get back to the other side of the stream, far away from this farm and its owner, then you can sing.”

Fox paid no attention to his friend’s advice. Right away, choosing his favorite song, Fox began to sing. Well, it wasn’t long before the owner of the farm heard the music and came rushing over toward them with a BIG STICK. Fox was the first to see who was coming and ran quickly out of the farm, through a hole in the fence. But poor Giraffe was slower to find a way out and when the owner of the farm arrived, he found only Giraffe at the scene of the crime. He beat poor Giraffe until he broke his stick.

When Giraffe was finally able to limp away from the farm, he went to where Fox was waiting for him at the edge of the stream for a lift back to the other side.

Giraffe agreed to carry Fox on his back again, but this time when Giraffe reached the middle of the stream, he had his own announcement to make. “I have a habit too, Fox, and mine is to always take a bath after having my lunch.”

“Oh, no”, Fox cried out. “I am very afraid of water. Please good friend,” he begged, “before you bathe please carry me safely to the other side of the stream.”

But just as Fox had done in the farm garden, Giraffe paid no attention to what Fox had asked. Right away, he bent his knees and started rolling all around in the water. Poor Fox could not swim, so he sank into the stream and was never seen again.

Read more stories in “Under the Mukusu Tree” !



US Director Nathan Roberts Speaking at the U of M, October 21st

Daylight co-founder and U.S. Director Nathan Roberts will be speaking alongside Rael Kakulima of Tanzania at the University of Minnesota Humphrey School. They will be leading a discussion on African and American Conflict Resolution at the 2016 MINN IDEA Summit in Minneapolis on Friday, October 21, 2016.


The theme of the fourth annual MINN IDEA Summit is Reimagining International Development: Defining Purpose and Success. The Summit aims to host a dialogue on how international development techniques are changing to keep up with a changing global landscape and how goals are being reevaluated and successes are being measured and analyzed.

The IDEA Summit explores topics such as community engagement, conflict resolution, building corporate partnerships, building capacity, creative funding mechanisms, communication and new development trends. In addition to breakout sessions, networking with like-minded practitioners will be a large component of the day.

Register here for an opportunity to hear Nathan and Rael Kakulima and a host of other great speakers on international development!


Michael Kimpur is Proud of Students’ Book: “Under the Mukusu Tree”

The nomadic tribes of the Kenyan desert are storytellers. Before my friends had the chance to go to school, we learned as we lived. Our first classrooms were the hills we walked with the cows, the cooking fires where we boiled sweet camel milk, the rivers where we filled our dried squash. Babas and Kamas – or as we say in English Moms and Dads – told us stories of the how the Sun and Moon wrestled to decide who would be queen of the sky. The elders would gather the children around the fire to tell them about how the Fox and the Giraffe got caught stealing the farmer’s grapes.

Michael Kimpur in the village

We are so proud to present “Under the Mukusu Tree” a collection of stories written by our 8th grade students at Daylight! 6152+glwiqL._SX348_BO1,204,203,200_

The students wanted to write down these stories so that future generations can read the stories they learned. It is quite a gift because these stories are changing as life in Kenya is changing.  More and more children are spending their days learning inside classrooms studying reading, math, and science. They are growing up to do jobs like bankers and lawyers. So they wanted to put together these stories so that the values the village will go with them into their new jobs. These stories teach us honesty, community, and respecting your elders.

2016 level 8 students and teachers

Now you might notice that some of the stories are set in a traditional village and others are set in a city and some are set in a formal school setting. This is because our students wanted to add new stories they have heard while living life in the city.  Stories that have helped our students translate the village values into 21st Century Kenyan life.

This is how our village adds stories. When elders from other tribes came to visit they shared stories from their village and some of these stories were retold to our children. As each generation comes of age, they retell the stories, adding new details to make the story come alive to the next generation. Our community trusts the wisdom of the elders in each generation to translate the values.

Who knows? Maybe someday we will have a story about how the Phone learned about the Internet!

Michael Kimpur
Daylight Kenya Director