Twenty-four-year-old Harrison Mbugua is a graduate of the Compassion program at the AIC Thigio Child Development Center (KE-722). He is now a businessman who spends his weekends as part of an evangelistic team.
"To know God and to make Him known; that is the gift Compassion gave me that will make a difference for the rest of my life." Harrison Mbugua thus summarizes the most important lesson he learned during his Compassion sponsorship.
Harrison, now 24, was sponsored in Compassion's child development program in 1990 and graduated in 1999. He is the second-oldest of ten children. "We were a large family and my parents were poor," he recalls.
At the AIC Thigio Child Development Center (KE-722), young Harrison found a staff that believed in him and encouraged him to believe in himself and, most of all, in a loving heavenly Father. Harrison finished his primary education but his results in the national grade eight examinations did not allow him to continue onto secondary school.
Persistence Pays Off
"The social workers encouraged me to still pursue my dreams of supporting myself and my family," Harrison says. "Since I had been learning shoemaking at the project, I decided to pursue that trade. On my graduation, the project staff gave me a farewell gift of shoemaking tools." And with that, Harrison set up "Joy Shoe Repairs."
Harrison explains the name: "Thinking of how the Lord had been good to me through Compassion, I had nothing but joy in my heart. Besides, I liked to make my customers happy whenever they came in for shoe repairs."
Within a short time, Harrison tried his skills at another business. He started a small food kiosk named "Hot Hot Hotel." He saved $103 in profits from the two businesses and decided to look for still other opportunities. In Kawangware, just on the outskirts of Nairobi, he started a bigger food kiosk that he named "Victory Hotel."
Sharing the "Victory"
"I believe with the Lord on my side, victory is assured in whatever I seek to do," says a confident Harrison. On weekends, he dons a different set of clothes as a member of an evangelistic team called "Arise for Your Light Has Come." Through the group's efforts, hundreds have been exposed to the gospel of Jesus Christ.
"Every day I remember to pray for Alasdair from the U.K.," Harrison says. "Without his sponsorship, I would not be what I am today. I have never met him, but I truly thank the Lord for him and ask that he becomes blessed in everything he does."
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