Pictured is Jeff Ohe (Edina Rotary), Renee Thompson (Hope for the Child), Akinyi Menya and Larry Zilliox (Alexandria Rotary Club). Akinyi is the daughter of a couple that operates Arise and Shine Day Care in Kisumu, Kenya. The check being handed to Akinyo is possible because of funds the Alexandria Rotary Club and other clubs in District 5950 donated to the Fast For Hope program. The check Akinyi holds will allow Arise and Shine Day Care to feed pre-school children for six months.
Akinyi came to the United States with a $150 check made out to Anoka Hennepin Votech, $100 in cash and a sweater in January several years ago. She worked at three or four fast food establishments to earn enough money to live and attend school. Today, she works for United Health as a consultant and will be finishing her MBA at the University of Minnesota in May. She is working on getting her parents to Minneapolis to attend the graduation ceremony.
Akinyi's father worked in the oil industry and her mother was a vice-president of Barclays Bank. The Menya's have retired and moved back to Kisumu and then started a day care center called Arise and Shine for pre-schoolers. They have hired several teachers and a cook and have plans to build a primary school with dormitory space. Land has been purchased and if you visit the web-site hopeforthechild.org, you will see plans for the school grounds.