Why Critical Needs are Critically Important

Real talk: maybe you haven’t heard about Chalice’s critical needs program. Or maybe you have heard of it, but you’re less clear on what it accomplishes. In our latest blog post, we’re here to fill in the blanks, and nothing does that better than the story of Meru County’s soon-to-be newest hairdresser.  

Yvonne is studying hair at home in Kenya, and a Chalice sponsor has supported her since 2011. But though she might make haircuts and styling look easy, her journey hasn’t been.  

She, her mother and siblings lived in a neighbourhood that consisted of makeshift homes made from light materials. One night, in December 2020, the family lost everything.  

A neighbour left a cooking stove burning, igniting a fire that ripped through the adjoining homes. It destroyed Yvonne’s home, and along with it, her family’s books, school uniforms, and more.  

Sr. Rosemary, a site staff member, recalls the family had only “the clothes on their backs.” 

A kind friend from church took them in, but a makeshift room that couldn’t keep out the rain wasn’t ideal, either. They relied on neighbours for meals and other items, a reality that devastated Yvonne’s mother.  

Sr. Rosemary saw the pain Yvonne and her family were in. Knowing the site could make a difference, she and other staff members put in a critical needs request. Critical needs requests allow Chalice site staff to ask for donations towards a particular cause, often medical expenses or other emergencies. 

The request asked for funds that would enable the family to rent a home for a year, and replace what was lost in the fire.  

Thanks to a generous outpouring of love from Chalice supporters, the site paid for not only one year’s rent, but new beds and bedding, tables, electricity, water, and more.  

Now, the family has a place to call home, and Yvonne is pursuing her dream of studying hair.  

“This family experienced the unfathomable love of Christ through you Chalice. Thank you very much,” writes Meru site director, Sr. Karutani Rose. 

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