Kenya East moves into new THQ building

Construction partially complete; work ongoing

The new Kenya East facility

Western officer Lt. Col. Ken Hodder who currently serves with his wife, Jolene, as territorial chief secretary and territorial leader of women’s ministries, respectively, in the Kenya East Territory recently oversaw the planning and construction of the new territorial headquarters (THQ) building, which was funded by the U.S. Western Territory.

“On the day scheduled for the start of construction, we arrived to greet the construction crew, all jam-packed into the back of a dump truck,” Jolene said. “Several hours later, the men began to prepare the site by digging holes with old, bent hand shovels. They carted dirt away in rickety wheelbarrows. Ladders and scaffolding were made out of tree branches, and what little heavy equipment they had looked like museum pieces. Still, the contractors seemed excited over the building plans. They assured us that they would construct a building that we would be proud of.”

Hodder visited the site regularly during construction. He often returned home with jaw-dropping stories modern light fixtures were installed upside down; clear glass was used to form washroom walls; doors to the washrooms were several inches too short; pull-string lights were installed in some offices and the boardroom; exposed wires ran from the beautiful light fixtures; walls were erected in the wrong places; kitchen cabinets had been hung on a plane other than horizontal.

The Hodders recently received a Certificate of Partial Completion. According to its terms, THQ could move in immediately, but the contractor could take up to six months to finish the job. The building is still without electricity and water.

“While we wait for the day we can eliminate the word ‘partial’ from the title of the certificate, we’re hoping to find enough money to purchase a generator, which would give us an independent and reliable source of power and water,” Jolene said.

People in Kenya are appreciative of the new workspace. Officers and employees of he new Kenya East THQ sent 40 touching thank you letters to the Hodders and Commissioner Anzeze energetically leads busloads of excited Salvationists on tours of the new building.

“We will continue to work with the contractors until all the defects have been fixed and we will continue to thank the Lord for our generous donors,” Jolene said. “It has taken many small miracles to get this far. No doubt we will need many more before this good work is completed.”

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