Hemming joins Gerlings to teach in Kenya school
Lynn Hemming is joining fellow teachers Irv and Corrine Gerling to teach in Kenya.
In February of 2016, the Mail brought readers the story of the Gerlings volunteering at Our Lady of Grace Home and Our Lady of Grace Academy in Kenya. These organizations were founded by former Drumheller resident Rita Balachandran (nee Rovere), sister of Renata Oman, through a trust fund she initiated called Action for God’s Love. It is a volunteer-run organization which aims to improve the material and spiritual lives of those trapped in poverty.
The Gerlings will be heading there this week and this will be their third time to Kenya. This year they will be joined by Lynn Hemming.
Hemming will join them April 29 for a month. This will be her first time to Africa and while she has travelled extensively, this is the first time going to work as an educator.
“I haven’t volunteered as a teacher before, so it is amazing. The school just recently got electricity, so it is definitely challenging to think about going back to teaching as it was 100 years ago,” said Hemming.
Corrine says in the years they have been there it has been rewarding work. Currently, there are about 150 orphan girls at the school.
“Rita is the driving force there. She is now 76 and she continues to support this. These are her girls,” Corrine said. “The girls are great, it is always nice to see them growing and learning.”
“I am looking forward to having Lynn and another teacher in the school to share the experience and see what we can do,” she said, adding their mission is not only to act as teachers but to support and share their knowledge with the teachers at the school to broaden their instructional strategies.
For Hemming, this is an opportunity of a lifetime.
“It is a lifelong dream I have had to do this. I think I said when I was 10 years old, someday I am going to go to Africa and volunteer,” Hemming said. “I am really excited about doing whatever I can do to help within the school. I am sure they will put me to work. I am sure it will be life changing, I have no doubt about that.”
To learn more about Action for God’s Love or the Our Lady of Grace Children’s Home, or to donate, go to www.actionforgodslove.org
Retired teacher Lynn Hemming will be heading to Kenya for a month to teach at Our Lady of Grace Academy.