During 12 years of operation WebHealer have supported a number of non profit organisations and charities, mainly related to healthcare and in particular mental health. This reflects WebHealer’s own focus, as many WebHealer clients are therapists, counsellors and hypnotherapy practitioners. The decision to support AVIF was based on the significant impact they have been shown to make not only to the health and wellbeing of vulnerable children and families in Africa but also to their outlook and futures. Through volunteering they are helping communities in Kenya and elsewhere to help themselves and better realise their potential, via sustainable, locally driven initiatives.
One location where AVIF have helped a great deal is the JNMCC Mercy Home for Girls near Kisumu. This is a girls orphanage (primarily, though they are starting to take boys) in the village of Maseno, for children who have been orphaned by HIV/AIDS. The village people are very poor, and tourism is non existent. Jobs are hard to come by. The home was founded in 1998 by Edward Buyengo, a local preacher and his wife, who took into their own home girls who were themselves homeless and needed care. The girls became sisters to Edward and Deborah’s own daughter Miriam. It is commonplace in Kenya for girls from poor families to be married off at a young age to alleviate the family burden and gain a dowry. Edward believes strongly that the Mercy Home remain under one roof and that the girls are treated just as his own.
In 2007 Nick & Charlie were placed by AVIF as part of the group who went to JNMCC. They went a lot further than most volunteers in fact as they subsequently set up their own foundation to support the home. The home then sourced substantial funding from an American church group which enabled many positive changes, such as installing electricity and building more dormitories as well as taking on more orphaned and abused children. Nick and Charlie now live in Kenya funded by www.VibrantVillage.org a US organisation developing sustainable communities.