Humble Hearts School, Kenya's first bilingual school for the deaf using Kenyan Sign Language (KSL) and English on an equal basis,[1] was started by Beatrice Anunda on 9 September 2003.[2]

Humble Hearts School
Sinai, Nairobi

Coordinates1°15′00″S 36°55′38″E / 1.25012°S 36.927344°E / -1.25012; 36.927344
TypeBilingual school for the deaf
Established9 September 2003 (20 years ago) (2003-09-09)
FounderBeatrice Anunda
PrincipalBeatrice Anunda
Age rangeinfancy to 20 years
Number of students300

Anunda was taught Kenyan Sign Language in the University of Nairobi's KSL Research Project, and came across a nine-year-old deaf child called Melinda in Doonholm. Anunda decided to start a project to reach out to deaf children who could not access schooling.[3] In 2005, the project had developed into a school for 30 students in a room of 100 square feet (9.3 m2), constructed of steel roofing sheets.[4] The school began to admit hearing siblings, and then other hearing children in the area of the school were admitted to Humble Hearts to promote inclusion. By the end of 2006, there were 300 students. In addition, KSL classes were offered to parents and others in the local community.[3]

The school is based in Sinai (Paradise), a large slum by Doonholm, a middle-class suburb of Nairobi.[5] In 2009, the school was destroyed when the Kenya Pipeline Company cleared land that was the right-of-way for an underground oil pipeline that ran through the settlement.[6] The school met in temporary classrooms until the school was rebuilt in a new location with the help of philanthropists and volunteers.[7][3] In 2016, work continued towards improving the school building for 300 students including 125 boarders. The students were provided with e-readers.[8]

Humble Hearts has a sister school, Trillium Charter School, located in Portland, Oregon, United States.[9]

See also



  1. ^ "The Sign". Daily Nation. 20 March 2013. Retrieved 17 November 2017.
  2. ^ Fillmore, Kari. "Kenya's Humble Hearts School for Deaf Children - 2010 Update". Colorado Magazine Online. Retrieved 17 November 2017.
  3. ^ a b c Anunda, Beatrice (19 September 2011). "Humble Hearts: The Story of a Bilingual Kenyan School for the Deaf Demolished and Rebuilt". Discovering Deaf Worlds Newsletter. 5 (1): 1–3. Retrieved 17 November 2017.
  4. ^ "Cutting Edge". Daily Nation. 28 November 2005. Retrieved 17 November 2017.
  5. ^ Horvath, Kira. "Humble Hearts School in Kenya by Kira Horvath - Colorado Magazine Online". Colorado Magazine Online. Retrieved 17 November 2017.
  6. ^ Makan, Jami; Ngirachu, John (2 February 2009). "The fire next time: Slum courts doom". Daily Nation. Retrieved 17 November 2017.
  7. ^ "Tragic News from Humble Hearts". Causes. 24 December 2009. Archived from the original on 12 November 2013. Retrieved 17 November 2017.
  8. ^ "Angel Covers: Testimonials". Colorado Gives. Community First Foundation. Retrieved 21 November 2017.
  9. ^ "Family Events: Year at a Glance" (PDF). Trillium Charter School. Retrieved 17 November 2017.