Irish Loreto Sister celebrates 79th birthday as charity turns 25

Sister Mary Owens 79th birthday
Sister Mary Owens is joined by Kenyan First Lady Margaret Kenyatta for the 25th Anniversary of the Nyumbani Children's Home. Photo: Twitter/FirstLadyKenya

Sunday was a special day for Irish Loreto Sister Mary Owens. Not only was she celebrating her 79th birthday, but also the 25th Anniversary of the children’s home which she leads.

Sister Mary has been the hands-on manager of the diverse Nyumbani programmes for more than 20 years after founder, Father Angelo D’Agostino died in 2006.

Before arriving in Kenya from Ireland in 1969, Sister Mary was a teacher, psychotherapist and religious leader. She holds a bachelor’s degree in education from University College, Dublin and a master’s in education and counseling from Trinity College, Dublin.

Sister Mary is described by the home, which is supported by Nyumbani Scotland Trust, as “a skilled executive who advocates far and wide for funding and volunteer support.”

“Her depth of experience, her winning way with the children and families, and her expert guidance have led Nyumbani to expand its breadth of services. She is especially proud of Nyumbani Village‘s growth as an environmentally sustainable, economically self-reliant community.”

The inspirational Irish Sister Mary not only knows all the children by name, but is also deeply aware of the unique needs of children with HIV/AIDS in her care.

Sister Mary was joined for Sunday’s double celebration by Kenyan First Lady, Margaret Kenyatta, and UK Deputy High Commissioner, Susie Kitchens.

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