Two years ago, Charles and Marty Wickham came to Kenya on safari and stayed at Solio Lodge. During their stay, they visited the local primary school, Honi Primary which is about a twenty minutes’ drive from Solio. They were not impressed by what they saw. The school was in complete disrepair, with leaking roofs and broken furniture, and made for a pretty miserable place for children to learn. Because of the leaks, the classrooms became damp and often had sitting water on the floor. As well as this, the weather in this part of Kenya can be cold, and with no windows or doors, this meant that the children would frequently be in cold and wet classrooms.

Honi primary school before it was rebuilt.

Before the school was rebuilt.

After Charles and Marty’s visit, they got in touch with The Safari Collection’s Community and Conservation Manager, Mark Boyd, to discuss a potential refurbishment of Honi and make it more bearable for the children. After much deliberation, the Wickham’s decided that the best thing to do was to start from the bottom and completely rebuild Honi.

The new school would include a new kitchen and dining room, a staff room, as well as nine classrooms with doors and windows that would keep out the wind and the rain. There would also be sports pitches made and a play area, as well as replacing all classroom furniture.

The new and improved Honi Primary.

Charles and Marty came back to Solio and Honi Primary to see the changes and improvements.

Last week, Charles and Marty came back to Kenya for the grand opening of the Charles Wickham Honi Primary School. A ceremony took place, and many people from the local community were invited, including the retired chief, the parish priest, head-teachers from other schools and all of the Solio staff. The children performed songs, comedy sketches and Charles and Marty had a tour of the school to see the improvements that, thanks to them, have taken place.

Charles and Marty met the children and teachers in their new classrooms.

Thank you from the bottom of our hearts to Charles and Marty who have made a significant positive change to the children of Honi’s education and future.

Thanks to Charles and Marty who have changed the lives of the children at Honi Primary.

If you would like to know more about The Safari Collection’s Community and Conservation programmes, please email our Community and Conservation Manager using