We are very lucky to count Brendan Coleman as a good friend and supporter of our charity. When he suggested introducing an award at St Bernadette Mary School for the pupil to embodies our Mission Statement we were very eager to hear his idea.
As Brendan has been busy promoting our charity within his circle of friends and family, Eileen Fray a teacher at Cardinal Langley School in Middleton who works with him was prepared to sponsor The St Bernadette Mary Spirit Award. Eileen is a very inspirational lady and from speaking to Brendan we realised just what this award meant to her.
In Eileen’s own words “The pupils I most admire are not necessarily the cleverest but the ones with the big hearts who try to help others even though that is not always easy. To me the students who stand out and who make my job such a joy are the boys and girls who have a lovely positive attitude to school and to those they share their time with. They stand up for what is right and they are proud of being part of their school family. They understand that being a friend to others and living like God wants us to are far more important than money or possessions. Students like these are an absolute inspiration and I just know you will have a person in your school who others look up to because he/she understands that a smile and a helping hand makes the sun shine brighter each day”
So with a generous donation from Eileen we started to work on our new Spirit Award, Papa Kevin managed to pick a very nice piece of treated mvule wood which was then stained and a special heading was done in the signwriters in Mombasa to be erect in the school. After speaking to Mr Pius our Head Teacher it was decided that the pupil would be picked by a blind ballot by the teachers this year due to time constraints but in 2013 the pupils would elect the worthy pupil. Mr Pius told us the name of the pupil Joseph Kai. The teachers asked that we and engraved Joseph’s name on it. We were all very excited on the final day of the school year and none more so than the pupils waiting to hear who was going to be awarded this prestigious honour.
Now here is Joseph’s account in his own words of his unforgettable day when he became the first pupil to receive this accolade.
My name is Joseph Kai. I am in class seven. I joined St Bernadette Mary School on the 8/01/2012. Since I have joined this school my life have been changed. My motto was ‘Respect is the mother of success’. It was not by words only but also in action, I show respect to everyone not only in school but also at home and everywhere I go. When I remembered the Bible in the Book of Proverbs chapter twelve, verse one which says: “Anyone who loves knowledge wants to be told when he is wrong. it is stupid to hate being corrected”. Both my teacher and parents corrected me when I went wrong and I myself, I didn’t want to go anywhere. I only want to live in the St Bernadette Mary School Spirit.
During closing day 23rd/11/2012 our parents, teachers and us pupils were gathered together as St Bernadette Mary School Family to awarded the pupils who were well perform their exams. The Master of Ceremonies announced that there was a special prize for a pupil whom have live in in the St Bernadette Mary School Spirit. I didn’t know when was and what prize was it.
After that they began to award the pupils for being performing well, even I was among them and I got a certificate and a prize. After that the Master of ceremonies announced that it was time to award the special prize. He asked Mama Mary to read the names of that pupil.
After few minutes, Mama Mary was already on the stage ready to read the name. I was careful to listen.
“Joseph Kai, come in front” she said. I was astonished. Tears of joy came out forming digits eleven. Mr Allan came on stage new bicycle and gave it to me I was so happy than usual. My mother the same she was very happy. Everyone broke into singing and dance to celebrate my victory.
This award was important for St Bernadette Mary School and the children of Mtepeni because they may change their behaviour and all of them they would behave well now. Now St Bernadette Mary School and Mtepeni Village will change and there will respect to all.
And my prayers is to St Bernadette Mary School, God to bless it and all the donors. I am singing thank you for all those who have donate this bicycle and God is on their side. He will bless them and nothing will going wrong in their life. I will never forget them forever and ever!!
Everyday i am sending my prayers towards the almighty God to bless you and i will not get tired.
The feedback from Mtepeni Village has been unbelievable, the gift of the bicycle has spread throughout the area with children attending other schools in the area requesting for places at St Bernadette Mary School!!