Tentmakers in Kenya

Kathy Randall: Grail Centre, Daraja Mbili, Kenya
This past week I have lived in a community house of lay women who have taken a vow to live in community and service. The week didn’t begin so well, because I was ill, but then I revived, and was able to learn exactly where I was and how they do their work and service.
One of their services to the community is a community college, basically a technical school. There they offer courses in basic instruction in computer use, tailoring and dressmaking, and motorbike maintenance. These courses are offered at a low cost to the
surrounding rural community, students who have found that they need further skills before they can enter the workforce.
I met with the computer class yesterday. All the students have completed secondary school, so they are fluent in English. We talked about life skills, integrity, and what to do as an upright citizen in a corrupt system. They were good to talk to, and once I had been speaking for a while they really opened up to conversation.
The man who teaches tailoring is also an interesting person. I had asked about getting a dress made, and he was the one recommended. So I went to meet Simon.
Simon has been partnering with the Grail for 3 years, as a teacher to those learning tailoring. He told me how much fabric I needed, and where to get it in Kisumu. Then I brought the material in, and he proceeded to make me my Kitenge. My traditional Kenyan dress. It looks great.
After he had made it, I continued to speak to him. Simon is not only a tailor and a teacher, but he also is a pastor in training. We spoke about our calls to ministry, and were able to encourage each other in our pursuit of our respective calls. As I was leaving, I told him he was like Paul, a tentmaker, or tailor, who also spreads God’s word.


2 thoughts on “Tentmakers in Kenya”

  1. Hi Kathi Randal

    I have been impressed so much to read from your experiences here in Kenya especially at the Grail Center Kisumu where you met Simon Tailoring Teacher, am absolutely happy find that my friend simon is such a grate man. am one of the community members of grail who lives just next to Grail Center. and infact I have benefited in one of their trainings at the Grail Cofido Hall about youth councelling.

    I met simon and told him about this and he was very happy and exited when I gave him a printed copy of your message about tent makers in Kenya. He asked me about your contacts i.e. your email address but I told him it was not there in the blog so you may reply me thro my mail above so we share ideas.

    good bye God bless you abundantly.


  2. I happen to “google tentmakers kenya” and found this article. We will be conducting a tentmakers conference (the first one) in Kenya between 14th-16th of June in Nairobi. If you could ask Simon to apply and get into contact with us through the website email we could preserve a training opportunity for him.

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