The service started on time at 10:30 a.m. with our Guest of Honour ushered to the venue by the band, scouts, St. John’s team and the Heads of Sections. Makini Schools being home to many students of South Sudanese origin, it was a pleasure to have Rebecca Nyandeng Garang De Mabior supporting us with her presence on this day.
Makini Schools Executive Director Dr. Mary Okelo reminded us of the things we ought to be grateful for so far, and particularly in 2016. “First and foremost I want to thank God,” she asserted.
Through the provision of Gifted and Talented at the school, children who have displayed gifts and talents, or have been eager to practice areas of interest, have had the possibility to access various opportunities: with the Makini Sports Academy, with Choate Rosemary Hall, the John Hopkin’s Centre for Talented Youth, Education Trust Stadi za Maisha among others.
In reflecting back to where the school has came from Dr. Mary Okelo acknowledged the developments we have made in ICT as an educational institution- the digitizing of curricular materials through Boresha Ltd.; an offshoot of Makini Schools. Makini Schools was also part of the Global Fund programs creating awareness of HIV/AIDS in the 1990s. Further to this, it was the only Kenyan school to have received a loan from the World Bank, which facilitated its expansion. All these were mentioned in a spirit of thanksgiving. However, Dr. Okelo reminded us that the most important people in all this was the parents and the students, “without them, there would no school,” she said.
Dr. Okelo thanked the Ministry of Education for working on creating equal opportunities for both private and public school students. Dr. Fred Matiang’i echoed her words in saying reforms would continue to take place to give our children the opportunities and learning environments that they needed to thrive.
Makini Schools Director Prof. P.L.O Lumumba led the service, ensuring that everything was done as per the schedule. It was a privilege to have Director Dr. Paul Wangai Jr give a sermonette on not giving up. “Our scars are a reminder of where we have come from and that God is taking care of us,” he said. Mrs. Wangai introduced the theme of the sermon by a story the children could relate to- about a boy called Tom.
The parents were well represented by PTA Chairman Mr. Patrick Keta who emphasised on three qualities everyone must possess in all they do: efficiency, effectiveness and ethics.
Sandra Kimokoti, alumni class of 2006, who was among the top girls in the country at her time, gave a word of encouragement to fellow students. She is currently a consultant at Dalberg Global Development Advisors.
The children performed poems and songs on the theme of giving thanks, making the ceremony a memorable event. They gave thanks for our KCPE and KCSE results, for the school, parents, teachers and leaders.
The Makini family gives thanks to everyone who attended the thanksgiving and looks forward to a bright and prosperous 2017. A special thanks to the School Administrator, Mrs. Margaret Openda, and her team, for the hard work put into ensuring the set up was top-notch.