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2018 Dedication


Dear beloved friends and supporters:  first and foremost is to thank you all for warm welcome when I was in your country last spring/early summer.  Our time together was a blessed time.  Secondly, please allow me to share this pictorial memorable event of our July 7 En-Gedi facility dedication.  You were all well represented by 17 guests from the US and Canada who attended the event.
Dedication Speech given by Ms.Margaret Njuguna on July 7, 2018.
  • Is it true: – that if you have a child with disability some people will stare at you?
  • Is it true that some people will look away from you?
  • Is it true that some people will think there is a curse or a bad omen in your family?
  • Is it true that some people will think you are bewitched?
  • Is it true that you will lose some of your friends?
  • Is it true that some marriages will break? Is it true that no one will want to babysit your child?
  • Is it true that some family members will ostracize you?
  • Is it true that you will be ashamed of that child?
  • Is it true that you will not want other people to know about it and that you will keep that child away from the public?
These are some of the challenges faced by parents with children with disabilities – and they are real challenges! I know that God calls people to special jobs – because he called me.  From a high profile job to a much higher profile job.   For 27 years, my work with the Christian Reformed Church of North America was working with people.  I worked with people on 2 levels.   Level 1 was with people who were Christian leaders, teaching them to be Shepherds for all, and not just to those who came to Church on Sundays. Level 2 was with people who were economically and socially poor – helping them improve their economic and social status. During these years, my eyes caught the attention of some special people who were completely left out in both levels of my work.  These were disabled people who lived in the streets – begging.    My heart went out to them and I started befriending them – to know them and hear their stories.   After many years of wondering what I needed to do to change the sad stories, I made a decision to quit my job, return home in Kenya and start a ministry that would help address some of the challenges faced by those closely affected by disability.  I started En-Gedi in mid 2014 with a mission to provide a special home that would offer children with disabilities a healthy and safe environment where they would grow, learn, thrive and develop to their fullest potential.  And in so doing, be a help to parents of such kids. I started by renting a small 3 bedroom house in Muigai Estate which filled up with 12 kids in just about one year. As a normal practise with me, I asked God what next and He led me to planning for buying land and building a bigger home for His children.  In about 2 and half years, He provided resources to purchase this land and to build up this beautiful facility.  God indeed has been our Ebenezer! En-Gedi Home provides a calm and a comfortable setting in which children are surrounded by caring and dedicated staff who encourage and nurture the children every moment of the day.  I belief the author who said “that in every society, disabled children have the same social needs as other children. They need to be loved and appreciated; they need to play and explore their world with other children and adults; they need opportunities to develop and use their bodies and minds to their fullest ability, whatever that may be; they need to feel welcome and appreciated by their family and in the community”. End of quote. One thing that is common to all of us – regardless of our physical or mental abilities is the breath of life that only God gives.  Sometimes I have wondered why a young surgeon who saves lives in a most reputable hospital drops dead while an En-Gedi child whose brain is 90% damaged and totally useless to itself keeps alive. The breath of life indeed belongs not to us, but to our creator.  Our Mission states that En-Gedi Children’s Home enriches the lives of children with special needs through collaborating with families, government departments, like- minded agencies, faith-based organizations, and corporations, to build a continuum of compassionate care.   I am grateful to God that he has touched many of you here today to be part of this life transforming ministry and I pray that the relationship we have started with you will grow and deepen so that we are able to help many more children with special needs. It’s my plan to liaise with county and national government offices dealing with special needs people so that together we can train the community people to appreciate and care for children with disabilities as well as mentor those willing to start a ministry like En-Gedi.   It’s also my plan to deepen our relationship with these 2 levels of government so that En-Gedi can be one of the beneficiaries of resources allocated for disability.  I would like to appreciate all of you here – who have in one way or other contributed to the success of En-Gedi Children’s Home. I will not be able to appreciate each one of you, but God knows you by name and knows what you do for these His special children.  Let us continue to love and care for them and in so doing, keep beautifying our eternal crowns up in glory.  My appeal to you all:
  • Please keep supporting us in whatever way you are able to
  • Link us up with people who support community work like this one
  • Tell others that we have a guest house and a conference centre that we rent out to raise support for En-Gedi children
  • Keep us in prayer for God’s continued blessings of health and improvement of ability for our children
I will end with this prayer: Lord, make me a light of who You are that all may see You and give You glory.  Let not only my heart be set on your worship, but I pray that others would worship You and dance for joy because of the works of love You do through me.  Yes, Lord, I pray that as I love them, caring for their needs and nourishing their hearts, that You would replenish their souls that they should have a heart of joy to worship You as you have given me.  I pray that You would make me the image of your love and that I would worship You not only with my mouth but with all I do.  Amen.

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Well Deserved Honor

In 2016 Margaret Njuguna was awarded the prestigious “Distinguished Alumni Award” for her accomplishments in founding En-gedi Home for Disabled Children on the outskirts of Nairobi Kenya. En-gedi Children’s Home, now four years old, is a place for children with severe disabilities. “These are children that a lot of people don’t like, including their own parents,”Ms. Njuguna said. “We run a rescue ministry to help children escape from confinement and neglect and to save children who have been left in the jungle to be eaten by hyenas. It is a call God gave me.”

Under her wings, these children have freedom, love and care.  After Ms. Margaret Njuguna spent the previous 27 years in the employ of World Renew, the global relief ministry of the Christian Reformed Church. She had the desire to do something more. Thus began the inspiration of En-gedi. Njuguna was trained as a finance and administrative manager—doing office work—in World Renew’s Kenya and Uganda offices. She wanted to do something more.“I learned that all people, regardless of their backgrounds, are made by God,” she said. “Every human being is made in the image of Christ.”

After graduation, Njuguna went back to Africa for World Renew, this time in Tanzania, to continue developing communities. In time, however, the call to advocate for the disabled led her to a new ministry. “I wanted to find out why people would hide children with disabilities, why they would want to sacrifice them, why they would want to neglect such children to death,” she said. In Kenyan culture, many people believe that having a child with disabilities is a curse or related to witchcraft—the children have been bewitched. It is her challenge to diminish the hold that superstition has on families who have disabled children, to see the image of God in them rather than an evil spirit. “It is a dark world,” she said. “When I got started I told God that I want to be a channel through which he can shine his light into the world of darkness.” This is difficult work—both the daily caring for special-needs children and the quest to alter long-held beliefs and perceptions. Njuguna thinks the light is starting to penetrate. “Slowly, slowly parents who did not want to even look at their children who are disabled, are now visiting and they can even hold their children,” she said. En-Gedi is not an adoption agency. Every child Njuguna takes in will either be cared for indefinitely or—her great hope—parents and relatives will eventually want to take their children back after accepting them and after they have learned how to care for them well.

She knows this is a project for the long haul. Njuguna believes it will take generations to fully overcome current prejudices. But she is preparing for that future, expanding her own facility to take more children and creating the climate for other homes across Kenya to be established.  

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Abled Differently

In Africa and elsewhere many people regard disabled children as a bad omen, a curse on their family, or just plain shameful. Often these beautiful children are hidden and isolated from other people and other children.
Here at En-gedi we have seen great transformation take place in the lives of the children. We have seen despair and despression turn into happiness, singing and playing. Parents often get tears in their eyes when they come to visit and see the change in their children.

Our children are abled differently and following are some accomplishments for us to rejoice in:

Jeremiah – this lovely boy, deaf from an ear infection immediately after birth came to us in May and his only movements were on his tummy – slithering on the floor.  Six weeks later, he bent his knees and lay on his elbows and attempted to crawl. In middle July, he lifted his elbows and attempted to crawl normally.  It did not matter how many times his wrists gave up and how many times he cried from hitting the floor with his forehead, Jeremiah wanted to crawl normally – and he soon did.  In mid-August, we taught him how to hold a spoon and soon Jeremiah started feeding himself and not just that, but we helped him to start to stand.   Though still weak at the lower back and ankles, Jeremiah is the most improved of our kids. 

The other child who has made very notable improvement is Godfrey, the only child who can talk and feed himself. He cannot walk though.    Godfrey has learned how to use blocks to make different images and he is apparently gifted in creativity.  He has also learned how to color and is enjoying it a lot.  He often brings tears to many who visit him at En-Gedi Home when he shares his dream of walking to school “when God helps him to walk” as he puts it.  I have already taken him to an orthopedic hospital, got him checked out, x-rayed and assessed for surgery to correct twisted legs.   About US$2000 will get him operated on his weak right leg and a pin to help his left knee to straighten it up a bit.  

Below re videos of some of our beloved children and the accomplishments they have made so far. “We do our best and God does the rest!

It is amazing what these children can do. One little boy has learned to walk and is pleased to show his progress to you. One little girl, born with no arms, is happy to let you know she gets around quite well. She is a leader and often leads the children in singing.  A small boy was brought to us. He could not move. He  has learned to lay on his tummy, lift his elbows up and attempt crawling. After many tries, and many little bumps on his forehead from falling foreward, he now crawls. The children are courageous and determined. There are many other examples of growth that will warm your heart and I will post them from time to time.

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Founder Margaret Njuguna

Board of Directors & Staff

En-Gedi Children’s Home has a Board of 7 men and women of integrity. Background of Margaret Njuguna, the founder of En-Gedi founder: Margaret worked in missions in different countries for over 20 years and in her work with communities, learned that many people regarded disabled children as either bad omens, curses, bewitchment, or just shameful. This belief, though just a myth, led to many disabled children being hidden and isolated from other people and other children.

Some communities even wished such children dead while others sacrificed them to the witchdoctors. To many people, even in the affluent communities, having a handicapped child is not something to talk about. And with a belief that any living child bears the image of God, regardless of their physical looks, Margaret began this ministry founded on the main principal of love. En-Gedi Children’s Home cares for children with disabilities from guardians/parents who have had some challenges caring for such children.   We are mostly linked up with such children through Community Organizations, Churches, and through our linkages with the local government officials.  

We normally meet with the parents/guardians and talk about the background of the children, the challenges in raising them, and ways we can help each other raise children in a way that they have good care, are well fed and their other needs met.  We take in children from willing guardians who also agree to periodically visit  En-Gedi Home to keep their connection with their children.

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Our Name

Many of us would be somewhat apprehensive of changing our vocation after working nearly thirty years with another entity. Margaret had been working with World Renew in many different countries and knew her way around as well as understood the culture of the people. One thing in particular bothered her as she visited her homeland. Margaret remarked that she never sees disabled children on the streets or yards. Where are these children? As this wore heavily on her mind, she pondered on what could be done for them. Margaret moved back to Kenya to set up a home for the disabled children who were either thrown out to wild animals or hidden in dark rooms. Margaret knew she had to do something to save these beautiful children. Having read 1 Samuel 23:23 – 24:2. Margaret named the home “En-gedi Children’s Home”. En-gedi was a place of refuge for David as King Saul pursued him with intent to kill him. Fleeing from King Saul, David hides in the strongholds at En Gedi. Margaret knew she had to start a home, a place of refuge, for these forgotten children. Ms. Njuguna’s prior training in social work and finance has given her the tools she needed to start En-gedi Children’s Home. Along with rescuing the children, Ms. Njuguna witnesses to families and teaches them about God’s love for these special children. “Taking care of these children and sharing love has brought me very close to God as many times I keep checking myself out regarding the call to serve. Sometimes children can wear one out especially when doing exercises on the floor. The different ways they express their joy keep humbling me an keeping me rededicating myself to His service. Our children are the happiest – and those who visit us can attest to that. The continuing improvement in their different faculties keeps affirming our motto “Doing our Best and God Doing the Rest”.” Ms. Njuguna acknowledged. Margaret Njuguna’s courage comes from the Lord. She listened and obeyed the Holy Spirit’s call upon her life.

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