Thursday, February 9, 2023

February 2023

Dear CHERISH Sponsors and Supporters, 

This year marks the 20th year in our relationship with Hope ministry in Meru! What a tremendous blessing this has been for everyone involved. Our goal is to help educate the youth of Meru and offer additional support as needed. Thank you all so much for your part in this effort. 

Since 2022, a severe drought has affected large parts of Kenya. In Meru, three-fourths of the country was affected by the drought. For many families, one meal a day was the norm. Students were unable to concentrate in class or participate in school. In response to the crisis, we have used non-sponsorship funds that many of you have generously given to CHERISH to partner with Kenyan groups who initiated feeding programs supporting the Meru community. As a result, since April, the students included in these feeding programs have all been able to have regular lunches. 

Despite the fact that rain did come, it was not enough to overcome all the effects of the drought. Hope now lies in the rainy season from March to May. Please pray with us for recovery from this dreadful situation. 

As we begin the 2023 school year, we are sponsoring 177 students. Because of Covid, Kenyan schools had altered their usual three-term school year to four terms in 2021 and 2022. Students are looking forward now to returning to their normal schedule.  Guardians send their gratitude for sponsors continuing to support the students throughout the Covid crisis and send their best wishes for a “HAPPY NEW YEAR 2023 full of GOD’s blessings” 

If you are currently sponsoring a student, please make note that you can check how much you have given toward your 2022-23 Sponsorship Pledge by clicking on “How to Check Your Cherish Donation History” at above. Sponsorship rates and giving instructions can also be found on the site. 

Thank you for being a part of this important ministry.

Sharon Moffitt, Cherish Team Member and Cherish Sponsor
Emily Bosh, UPPC Elder of Outreach and Mission
Rev. Lisa Woicik, UPPC Minister of Outreach 

Monday, February 7, 2022

January 2022

Happy New Year, Cherish Sponsors and Supporters! 

January is a great time to pause and picture our young Kenyan friends walking with anticipation through the villages of Meru to start a new year of school. Because of Cherish and HOPE, over 200 students are experiencing school security; they don’t have to wonder if their family’s money will run out before the next term’s school fees are due, abruptly ending their formal education. Not only do they enjoy educational security, but they also know they have a stable and loving neighbor – their HOPE guardian – checking in on them periodically to make sure they have the clothing, food, and even medicine they need to flourish. I feel so blessed to be a part of this good work, and I hope you do too.

I traveled to Kenya with Cherish three years ago. Visiting the homes and schools of our sponsored children showed me that our Cherish students are learning so much! At home they learn practical skills such as farming, gardening, budgeting, water purification, and management. Their school learning – such as language acquisition and problem solving – augments their real-world learning to open their mind to think big and find innovative ways to support their family in the future. I will say this – these Meru students work hard at both home and school! They are going to be well equipped for a productive adult life.

To make up for educational losses during the school closures in 2020, students in Kenya will be attending a 4th term of school in 2022. This Is the equivalent of schools in Washington deciding to continue school through summer break. While Cherish sponsors will not be expected to make a 4th contribution this year, we do want to invite you to consider make an extra gift to help cover these additional school fees for our Cherish students. Simply label your donation, “Extra family gift.” For reference, the cost per term for a primary student is $118 and for a secondary student is $195. 

Cherish maintains the best aspects of being small, grass roots, and personal (despite tremendous growth) through relational letter-writing and prayer. We do want to let sponsors know that extra gifts beyond sponsorship dues can no longer be ear-marked to go to a specific child or family. It is healthier from a non-profit standpoint for donors to designate their above-and-beyond donation, “Extra family gift,” and allow the HOPE guardians to discern where the money needs to be directed. This money will be used for unforeseen needs such as food, clothing, and medicine for the children, or spikes in school fees.

Other bits of news – 
  • Cherish has a new, useful, and easy-to-remember email address: Multiple Kenya Team members will have access to this mailbox so inquiries can quickly be directed to the right person. 
  • There are several students waiting for sponsors; see the list at
  • Sponsorship donations are due March 5, June 5, and October 5.
  • View your Cherish giving – past, present, and future – online! See link for details.
Thank you for your faithful partnership with Cherish Meru. Sponsors are making such a difference. Speaking for my family, I know the money that we pre-designate for Kingdom purposes is the easiest yet most gratifying part of our budget. It is a practical way to express our trust of a good God who cares for our needs as well as the needs of the children in Meru – He really is good “all the time!”


Pam Wenz,
Cherish Team Member and Cherish Sponsor

Emily Bosh 
UPPC Elder of Outreach and Mission | (253) 459-4049

Lisa Woicik
UPPC Minister of Outreach | (253) 292-2848

P.S. Be sure to check the updated Donation Instructions to help ensure your donations are received correctly.  

Wednesday, September 1, 2021

September 2021 - CHERISH UPDATE

 Greetings Sponsors and Supporter of CHERISH,

This is a reminder that of today, September 1, the sponsorship rates have changed.  Please also remember that there has been a change in the school year and your donation due by October 5 will cover the final term of their school year.   I will contact sponsors whose rate will change with their March donation.

Beginning September 2021

· Elementary = $354/year; $118/trimester; $29.50/month

· High School = $585/year; $195/trimester; $48.75/month

Please also be aware that the tracking of donations is undergoing some changes also.  Please make certain that your donations are designated for SPONSORSHIP (above amounts) and any extra you would like sent to your student for family needs is designated EXTRA GIFT TO STUDENT AND FAMILIES and donations for general needs of the ministry go to CHERISH WHERE NEEDED.   UPPC is tracking the amounts donated during the fiscal year.  

We appreciate your patience and continued support during this time of change and COVID disruptions both here and in Meru. Please share our website with others who might be willing to sponsor one of our WAITING students.   We are thankful to be able to continue to walk along side our brothers and sisters in Meru.


Karen Lau and the CHERISH TEAM