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The Surprise Visitors

by Eligrania Lema


My typical Kisa class begins at 3:30 pm when I arrive at the school with my flip charts for the day in hand. As a Kisa Mentor, every step I take toward the class is one of anticipation.


But this particular Tuesday, April  12, 2016, was a special day for the Mawenzi Kisa Scholars because they were not expecting the surprise coming their way.  All they knew was that they couldn’t miss the class as there were 2 very important guests visiting on that day.  The guests and I arrived at the school 15 minutes before the class and waited patiently for the Scholars as they came into the classroom one by one.  In their own individual way, they all knew the surprise but had never seen a picture of her and never did they expect it.  As each one arrived, I asked them “what is the name of the founder of AfricAid?”  They all said “Ashley Shuyler,” but they had no idea that one of these visitors was in fact Ashley herself!  The other special guest was Ashley’s mom, Nina Shuyler.


The class began with regular updates from the Scholars and then proceeded to ask the guests to introduce themselves to the girls.  One girl in particular who had always wondered about the 16 year old Ashley was overjoyed and with a huge smile on her face went in for a hug. The students were speechless and absolutely delighted with the surprise guests.  The girls went on to display their confidence in their practice presentations, as was the order of business for that session.