Kakamega County formally adopts Daisy Special School from Finnish founders

The County Government of Kakamega has officially adopted Daisy Special School, a mixed day and boarding institution founded by a missionary couple to cater for children with ranging challenges.

Governor Fernandez Barasa made the announcement when he visited the school to formalize the takeover.

The governor said his government is fully committed to ensuring an improved learning environment for Daisy Special School and other learning institutions across Kakamega County.

“I have directed the Education CECM Dr. Bonface Okoth to oversee the construction of modern Early Childhood Development Education (ECDE) classrooms for the school,” he declared.

Barasa pointed out that his administration will prioritize creation of a conducive learning environment in learning institutions, with key projects like “Amatsi Khumuliango,” (water at the doorstep) taking the lead in fulfilling his   mission of ensuring access to clean water in all schools.

Daisy Special School was started by Reverend Perti and Heidi Soderland, a missionary couple from Finland whose passion for children with physical challenges was inspired by their daughter Daisy, who is physically challenged.

The school opened doors on September 4, 1995, with additional sponsorship coming from the Full Gospel Churches of Kenya.

Currently, the school handles over 400 children and employs 25 teachers and 16 non- teaching staff.

The head teacher Bishop Eliud Walwanda challenged parents and guardians with children who need special care to accept and embrace them in order to have access to quality education.

Walwanda had earlier lamented that parents have stigmatized their children on witchcraft allegations, making it difficult for them to enjoy life.

“We are having children with epilepsy, cerebral palsy and other complications, most of whom are abandoned by their parents because they are believed to have been bewitched,” said Walwanda.

The school offers three levels of learning: the standard primary, pre-vocational and vocational, and the special class.

In addition, Daisy has a physical therapy centre and pre-school classes.

Under pre-vocational and vocational programmes, pupils who cannot keep up with the standard primary classes learn skills such as sewing, farming, and household chores.

However, the special classes are for children who have multiple handicaps and are unable to keep up with either of the two curricula.

By Jared Opiyo

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