Light Up the Night

Cantate with Ester

Valentine’s day is not a carefree day at Nkoaranga orphanage. Just three years ago, an electrical short caused the orphanage baby room to catch fire, and seriously burned two children. It might have been much worse except for the heroism of Cantate, one of the orphanage mamas and one of the two kindergarten teachers. She carried every one of the seven children in that room (all under nine months) to safety, incurring serious injury herself in the process. Her scars are badges of courage. Pray and David will also carry the scars of that day on their bodies forever. We are very, very lucky and grateful that nothing worse happened.

We want to honor her heroism and keep the children safe, which is why we’re launching Project “Light Up the Night” – a two part project which involves rewiring the entire orphanage to prevent dangerous shorts, as well as installing solar lighting for the frequent nightly power outages. Previously, the mamas often had to carry a child in one hand and a candle in the other – obviously an extremely dangerous proposition. Over the last few years, we’ve been moderately successful at supplying them with battery powered lights, but they are far from an ideal solution. Since December, they have had small solar lanterns, which are a huge improvement – but they deserve a better solution. We are committed to bringing it to them.

David, whose legs were very badly burned
Pray, who was burned badly on his head

Project “Light Up the Night” will culminate in April with a gala dinner being thrown by Kristina Alexander in Victoria, British Columbia, with all proceeds going to the project. If we exceed our fundraising goals, we can also install solar lighting in the hospital’s maternity wing. Currently, laboring mothers are left in the dark for hours at a time, seriously endangering them and preventing the doctors from doing their jobs properly. Part of supporting the orphanage is doing everything within our power to prevent children from being orphaned in the first place, and we take that responsibility seriously. 
Take a look at the video to see Cantate describe the day in her own words, and to meet David and Pray. Don’t forget, David is also one of the children we are hoping to find sponsors for, to allow him to attend school next year. See all the details on our Education page.

For $6,000, we can rewire the entire orphanage and install solar lighting, and for another $3500 we can install solar lighting in the hospital’s maternity ward as well. To contribute, click below (you will enter the amount you’d like to contribute on the next page) or go through our “How to Help” page, and select “Light Up the Night.” 

Thank you for caring about our kids, and thank you for anything you can give.