Once a year Kolping families throughout the U.S. have the opportunity to contribute to a project that promotes the teachings of Father Kolping and demonstrates the commitment of our members to his work – we call this our Lenten Project.
At our convention in New York this year, delegates voted to support a national effort to contribute to one of the projects run by Kolping International. We also agreed that we would commit to an annual project for a three-year period to be able to measure its success and allow our local families to plan each year for this Lenten Project. Our objectives were clear:
- find a project that will directly benefit Kolping members;
- support efforts that not only educate, but provide “real” skills to enhance the quality of life for these Kolping families;
- require accountability by Kolping International, so our members in the U.S. can understand the progress made and “get to know” the families we’re supporting.
We convened a subcommittee of delegates from across the Kolping families and identified a project we feel meets these criteria – Life-stock farming in Kenya.
Kolping International invites Kolping members in Kenya to participate in a program that aims to teach the skills needed to raise goats, produce milk and utilize dung by-products for sale, use and sustainability. Kolping Kenya has existed since the mid 1980’s and currently includes over 3,500 members in five different regions. In a highly agriculture-dependent country, raising goats can mean the difference between living in poverty and enjoying a simple life. Marcus Demele, General Secretary of Kolping International, together with his senior desk officer / project coordinator Volker Greulich, has agreed to act as the point person for this relationship.