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A married couple asked guests at their ruby wedding party to make donations to a Kenyan school rather than give them presents.

Ziggy and Chris Pitura, of Broughton Gifford, raised £1,120 at their party for the Bombolulu School of Promise, an education facility for orphaned children in Mombasa.

The school was set up in October 2004 by Mrs Pituras niece, Jacqueline Furlepa, who pledged to provide support for Kenyan children after witnessing the deprivation in the country during a two month charity visit in 2001.

The school, which is run by a group of three local volunteers, has no permanent building and very few basic teaching supplies such as pens and pencils.
Mrs Furlepa, and her husband Paul, both trustees of the school, were just two of 135 guests at the wedding celebration in Broughton Gifford Village Hall on September 24, many of whom came as far away as Yorkshire.

Mrs Pitturs, 58, said: "When we sent out the wedding invitations we included a picture of the orphaned children. We asked people to donate money to the charity instead of buying us presents. We want to help these children escape the cycle of poverty and the first step is to provide them with a permanent school building.

"So far we've donated clothes, musical instruments and some other provisions but there is a long way to go."

Mr Pitura, 61, a former polish refugee who spent four years in Kenya as a child, said the country still held a special place in his heart.

"My family were looked after extremely well when we arrived in Kenya so it is nice to be able to give something back to the people there," he said. "I was overwhelmed by the generosity of our guests and I'd really like to thank our daughters Caroline and Joanne for organsing the whole things.

"The following morning we handed all the money over to Jacqueline and Paul, who continue to work hard on the behalf of the schoolchildren there."
Daughter Caroline said she was proud of her parents for their selfless act.
"We moan every day about the things that we don't have but these children in Kenya has absolutely nothing.

"I think it's fantastic that mum and dad decided to support the school and we want to thank all our family and friends for giving so generously."

Generous couple's cash for Kenyan orphans

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