Local Kenyans Donated Equivalent of $250,000 to Daylight in 2017!

Local Kenyans donated the equivalent of $250,000 worth of volunteer hours, food and livestock grown in the Daylight farm, monetary, and in-kind donations to Daylight School in Kenya in 2017!
Daylight has always been a partnership between the local people of rural Kenya and American supporters. Kenyans donate their labor in harvesting the school’s corn or helping construct classrooms. They donate bricks for building projects and offer corn, rice, and beans for the students to eat.teachersDaylight Teachers are often young people who have just graduated college. And, like in Teach for America in the U.S., our young teachers volunteer to help Daylight at only a fraction of a usual teacher’s pay. Daylight’s 25 teachers donated $20,000 in volunteer hours per month!

DSC04567Our four school cooks have children who attend Daylight! After serving and cleaning up 300 bowls, they donate several hours each week to the school. These hours are valued at $400 per month! In addition, the local builders and neighbors who construct our classrooms donate around $1200 in labor each month.IMG-20170824-WA0000The local businesses give Daylight reduced rates because they believe in the work we are doing. The construction delivery truck company reduces their typical fees by $250 each month.

Relatives of Daylight students, local businesses, and neighbors donate what they can to help Daylight grow. This year they donated bricks and sand to build the K – 3rd grade classroom. Each month they donated around $2,000 in corn, beans, rice, bricks, and donations.20151024_113233

Daylight is also a working farm! With an eye towards sustainability, Daylight produces three tons of corn each year and has five cows.  Daylight harvests $12,000 in corn and beans and $50 per month in milk. The corn is in the background and the kids are drinking the milk!

Local politicians, business leaders, and individuals make generous monetary donations to Daylight throughout the year! Daylight is a partnership.


3 Ways to Help Your Congregation Connect with Daylight

Edina Morningside Community Church (UCC) is a small church with around 200 members. We have a very committed congregation to our outreach programs. One of our favorites is the support of Daylight Center and School and the children.


Here are a few ways we have found helpful to get our congregation more connected to Daylight.

#1 Invite a Daylight Representative to Speak to Your Church

We have been supporting Daylight ever since Michael Kimpur and Nathan Roberts visited our congregation to introduce us to Daylight in January of 2011. Since that time we have participated in many projects to provide needed items for Daylight.13139039_1317290704967679_5707347350806444638_n

Since then we have sponsored collections for blankets, textbooks, bedding packages for one of the new dormitories, goats (which became 1 cow and 3 goats at Michel’s request) and sponsorship of a Daylight child.

#2 Plan a Fundraiser for Daylight

Edina Morningside has individual supporters that give to Daylight monthly towards our general fund, helping to provide food for the students and teacher salaries that are so important to making it all possible. In addition to this the congregation undertakes special projects to meet specific needs at Daylight. The church likes to see how we are doing to reach our goals so I make a tally poster for each project which is posted in the narthex, report how we are doing during announcements and in the monthly newsletter. Here are some examples.

Blankets for one of the dormitories:

Daylight Blanket Post 2_edited

As we collected funds for each blanket a square was filled in with a picture of a square of the blanket material until the entire poster was filled. I find that it is always important to let the congregation know the final tally and thank them for their participation.

Textbooks for the Daylight School:


Rachel Arneson was kind enough to provide us with copies of the textbook covers so we would know what they looked like. Each books cost $6.00 and, as the funds came in, I filled in a square to represent a book sold.

This is an example of a “thank you” to the congregation that appeared in the monthly newsletter.


Through your generosity we collected enough money to purchase 120 books! That is wonderful! Please check out the pictures of the covers of some of the textbooks that the Daylight School children use. They are posted around the “tally board” in the narthex. Again, thank you! Asante!

Bedding Packages for the new dormitory:
Each bedding package consisting of a blanket, sheet, pillow and mattress, cost $40.00. As the funds came in I posted a “bedding package” on the poster.

You’ve Done It Again! Thank You! Through your generosity, 38 Daylight students will be cozy and comfortable in their new bunk beds in the new dormitory. Our Congregation donated funds to purchase 38 bedding packages! Thank you so much! Please continue to keep the people of Kenya, the staff and children at Daylight and the dedicated people who support Daylight in your prayers.


Pam DeLaittre

#3 Monthly Daylight Articles in the Newsletter and on Social Media:

Besides these funding projects, I capture information and photos from the “One Minute Updates” and prepare an article about Daylight for our monthly newsletter – The Messenger. This keeps information about Daylight in front of the congregation and requests that we continue to pray for Daylight. The Daylight article is posted on the bulletin board in the Narthex each month.

You can also share the One Minute Updates from Daylight’s Facebook Page on your church social media.

I hope some of this information will be helpful in encouraging your congregation to support Daylight. I’d love to hear what you are doing for Daylight.

If you are interested in becoming a congregational liaison between Daylight and your community please email info@daylightcenter.org.

Edina Morningside UCC Congregational Liaison
Pam DeLaittre


Isaac Wants to be an Orthopedic Surgeon

Isaac is in 8th grade at Daylight, and his favorite subject is science. “I love to study the human body. I want to know more about the inside so I am planning to study to be a surgeon.” He wants to go to Nairobi to study to be an orthopedic surgeon. “I want to help people who break bones.”

13 - Isaac

Isaac and his brother came to Daylight because his family could not afford to send Isaac to school. Because their family lives too far away for them to walk each day, Isaac and his brother stay overnight in the Daylight dormitory. After class you will usually find him on the Daylight futbol field. “It keeps my body strong,” he smiles.

“Maybe someday I want to visit America. I’d like to see how cold it is. What being really cold feels like on my skin.” He has met enough of our volunteers from Minnesota to have heard a lot about snow.

On behalf of Isaac, his family, and all our students, we thank you for supporting Daylight.


The New Solar Powered Well is Pumping Water in Alale!

The New Solar Powered Well is Pumping Water in Alale! This reliable source of water will improve conditions for the entire community.

It will especially benefit the women, relieving them from walking hours one way and waiting in long lines at hand-dug wells in dry riverbeds.

Bringing water to Alale was a huge project and the work of so many hands.picture 6In January 2016, the existing shallow well near Michael’s village in Alale was confirmed to have gone dry. This was the only well that provided water to Daylight Alale school, church, and the surrounding families. The existing pump equipment was removed and the well abandoned.

During Michael’s visit to Minnesota in the Spring of 2016, the Stillwater Sunrise Rotary Club was approached with a request for funding a new a solar-powered well that would pump water from the desert water table over 175 feet underground.

Ed Boeve sponsored our request, and a campaign was launched with other Rotary Clubs in the District. The grant was approved in the fall of 2016.

The first step was a site survey by Mirobe Engineering & Water Service to select a suitable location for the new well. Three locations were identified and the best option selected.

picture 1The next step was to mobilize a very large drilling rig furnished by Majitec to drill.

Then, we had to install metal well casing down to 575 feet down. The pump is at a depth of 510 ft.  This will permit a drawdown of 345 ft of water. picture 2
Next, we procured the pump and solar equipment and partially installed them in January of 2017.  Michael Kimpur assisted with the installation. picture 3
The pump and well were tested, and samples of the water were retained for testing alongside the Stillwater team and US project leader Gary May.
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After some delay due to the extreme drought, the water-delivery fixtures and solar controls were completed in August of 2017.
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Thank you to Stillwater Rotary, the Partner Rotary Clubs, Ed Boeve, Michael Kimpur, Gary May, Lenny and Sandy Snellman, Pastor Evans Kiptoo, Kenya Board member Bosco Loris, and all the village elders in Alale. Some additional funding was required so thank you to all those who volunteered their time, contributions, and prayers during the process.


Getting Ready for September Classes to Start

Daylight has spent the August summer break preparing for September classes. Students are helping their family bring in the harvest, spending time playing soccer, and hanging out with friends.

At Daylight, we are hard at work cleaning desks and organizing lessons. The 1st – 3rd grade classrooms are under construction to get them ready for school to start in September.

Sarah is excited about studying in the new 3rd grade classroom. Sarah is pretty amazing. She is the goalkeeper in her class’s soccer games. She wants to be an artist, and her favorite subject is math. She drew a sketch of the new classroom!

SarahFor the last few years, Sarah and her fellow early elementary school students have been studying (and, as you can see, having fun) in their corrugated tin-walled temporary classroom.DSC_2488This year, we were able to construct a new brick classroom building for these amazing students to study in! With support from Autumn Ridge Church and local builders, we got the bricks laid and the walls up.20170102_160834_resized_1In March, the Autumn Ridge team came and helped roof the classroom.autumn ridge workWith support from Kenyan builders, donor Emilie Robinson and Daylight’s US partners, the builders are now busy putting on the finishing touches to get ready for our kids to study in September! IMG-20170824-WA0002 (1)When the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd graders come back to school, they will have a great new classroom!20140929_152421Thank you for supporting Sarah and the rest of the 400 students studying at Daylight!