LEBANON - After an historically bitter cold winter this year in Illinois, anyone in the state with resources to escape to warmer temperatures is doing so over spring break. But few are going as far as State Senator Kyle McCarter and his wife Victoria, who are once again visiting a frequent "vacation" spot in one of the neediest areas of Kenya, Africa.
The McCarters returned to Tharaka, Kenya this week to spend their spring break assisting at the Each One Feed One International ministry Senator McCarter's parents founded in 1981.
In 1987 - years before getting involved in Illinois politics - the senator and his wife lived in Kenya and built the area's Faith Medical Clinic, where HIV-infected patients are among those seeking medical treatment.
The EOFO ministry opened its doors this year to care fulltime for 16 young Kenyans infected by HIV/AIDs.
"One young girl, Sarah, was raped repeatedly by two different men at the tender age of seven. She is now HIV positive, has been shunned by her village and was forced out of school for almost three years," Victoria McCarter wrote on the ministry's blog in February. "Sarah now lives on our campus where she is loved and accepted. She is attending Excellent Academy School and is thriving. Sarah now has a future and hope..."
The EOFO aims to feed and educate Kenyan children, as well as provide a source of fresh water to the community. Senator McCarter wrote a few months ago of the effort it took to provide the community access to fresh water.
"Water! I just came back from visiting the Catholics in Mukothima. The dust was 10 inches deep on the road and the motorcycle I borrowed to get there plowed through it covering me up to my knees," Senator McCarter wrote.
"I took a pineapple to Father Mwenda to say thank you to them for approving EOFO to hook onto the main line coming from the spring. Yes, spring water at EOFO. I am going back after writing this to help finish digging the trench, only 130 meters, to our water tank ... I am not leaving here until I see the water for myself coming from the tap."
The McCarters encourage donations to the work in Kenya, where $40 per month will feed a Kenyan child for a month.
Find out more about Each One Feed One HERE.