Bruce Brown, a soft-spoken 6th grader at the top of his class, attends the Mathare County Outreach (MCO) Joy primary school. He lives with his parents and two brothers in Huruma, a little over a mile from the Mathare Valley slum. His tiny, 20x20, two-room apartment only has enough room for a few beds and a barebones kitchen. Bruce and his family share a bathroom with other families who live on the same floor. Bruce’s dad is an electrician while his mother is a stay-at-home mom.

Bruce rises early to begin his lonely walk to school at 6 a.m. The cold mornings and streets packed with speeding vehicles keep him alert and afraid. Bruce anxiously recalled, “A friend of mine was once knocked down by a moving bus while crossing the road.”

On his way to school, Bruce must also dodge muggers who steal purses and cell phones. He shared: “I don’t feel safe when I am out in the streets of Huruma and Mathare. I am constantly afraid that thieves will snatch something from me. Sometimes thieves even kill people when they resist.”

But with one step onto the MCO Joy school ground, Bruce feels secure. Bruce explained: “I love school because it keeps me safe and has a great environment for learning. When schools were closed, and children were asked to go back home, this was difficult for me since I felt safer at school than out in the streets or at home with my brothers.”

Not only does school make Bruce feel physically protected, but spiritually secure. Each week, students learn about God’s love for them and His promise to always be with them. Bruce shared: “Mr. Nicholas always teaches us something new about life from the Bible. It is always very encouraging.”

Bruce loves spending time at the school computer lab and participating in the Reading Eggs virtual learning platform sponsored by Bright Hope. He said: “The computer lessons are my favorite! I have been doing better in my English tests because of learning English on with the Reading Eggs computer program.” Bruce scored 41 out of a possible 50 in his last English test. Through the Reading Eggs program, 5th through 8th grade students have access to English language lessons and a virtual library with hundreds of books!

In Bruce’s words: “While on Reading Eggs, I enjoy reading short stories and books. I also love the interesting word games that I get to play. I also take language tests in grammar and comprehension.”

Bruce hopes to one day be an accountant because he loves working with numbers. And because of faithful friends like you, Bruce has the tools and the confidence to pursue his dreams.

Bruce asked us to tell you: “I would like to say thank you to those who helped to set up the computer lab and the Reading Eggs program. My friends and I have learned a lot and have improved in English. I plan to study hard and one day be able to help my family live in a better neighborhood. I would also love to travel to other countries.”

We need your help to give impoverished kids the tools to build a future!

Your gift of $25, $50, or more will give more needy kids at the MCO Joy primary school the chance to learn English through the Reading Eggs program. Right now, we are $11,150 short of our fiscal year Reading Eggs budget and would love your help bridging that gap.

Thank you for investing in the lives of students like Bruce! Because of you, hundreds of young men and women have the reading skills they need to build a full, safe life far from the fearful world of poverty. If the Reading Eggs program receives enough funding, additional gifts will go toward other strategic needs.

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