Esther Kanyutu, a mother of three kids, knew that God had a purpose for her in life. Today, she is a mother of 68 young girls and boys who were left homeless after the 2007 Kenya post-election violence. It all began when a police vehicle dropped those vulnerable kids in front of her house. She prayed to God to give her the strength to provide for and protect them. She knelt down and prayed because in prayer, hope finds roots and faith finds action.
She was raised by a stranger, and she did not see why she should not raise strangers. Prayers, fasting and believing in God were her strength. This is her story:
My name is Esther Kanyutu, a mother of 68 young, vulnerable kids in Kenya. I believe that all kids around the world deserve a good life, education and love.
For 14 years now, I have been that loving mother to my own kids and many more kids around Kenya.
It all started in 2007 when Kenya was hit by post-election violence. This left many kids homeless.
I [told] myself that I [had] to rescue and protect these young vulnerable kids; their parents were killed and others displaced during the violence. I tried looking [for] and locating their parents, but I could not locate them. Their parents were slaughtered like cows and some ran away. Some kids got lost in the running process and some [parents] left their kids. That’s how Noah’s Boat Foundation was born and it became a project. I am happy to be a mother to the motherless.
I am a born-again Christian who believes that through God, everything is possible. God chose me and I knew it [was] time to do God’s work. I never knew where to start, but it did happen. I heard God telling me that He has given me those kids and it’s my responsibility to care for them.
Fasting and praying disciplines the mind to focus in the right manner that God intend for His people.
I was born and never saw my mother. She died when I was born and I was raised by a stranger – a woman who never knew who I was.
I decided to get married when I was 20 years old, thinking that if I got a man, I would have someone who would care, protect me and mostly provide everything that I needed.
I was wrong.
Instead, he saw me like a nobody, a beggar and a desperate young woman. I was living a hopeless life, full of darkness and pain. My husband mistreated me and never cared about me or my kids.
I never left so that I [could] get married [again], oh no! I left because I wanted to work hard and help myself and the vulnerable. I felt like I was a burden to him and I decided to leave. Being that I was brought up in church, it gave me the strength to face challenges. I was this woman who never judged and a woman who expected good things in life.
I was now a single mother of three kids and other adopted kids. I didn’t know how to do this. All I knew is that these kids were suffering the same way I suffered, and I believed that no child out there should suffer.
I believe that no matter where you are from or your skin colour, we all have dreams.
I fasted and prayed to God to give me the strength to overcome all the challenges that came my way. God came through; friends started to donate food, clothes and medical supplies.
In 2018, I become a victim of poisoning. I stayed in hospital for six months and overcame the challenge only because I became a servant of God and doing His work, which is rescuing, educating and empowering these young girls and boys.
I would love to encourage women that there is a God. When you go through problems, there are always two choices: either to serve God or the devil. The choice is yours, but know that everybody who stands with God is a winner.
Let’s say no to abuse and gender-based violence. Be kind always.
You can contact Esther via:
Gladwell Wachira is mother of two boys, a rescuer and a lover of life who enjoys travel and reading.