Esther Calls it a Day
The staff and members of Koinonia Community hosted a party to bid farewell to its outgoing administrator Esther Kabugi while at the same time welcoming Harrison Kyalo, the new administrator. The occasion, that also turned out to be a celebration by staff to mark the end of the year, was held in Ongata Rongai, in the outskirts of Nairobi. During Esther’s superannuation, staffers who have worked under her since she took over the reins in 2009 were full of praise for the lady who initially joined the Community in 2008 as a communications/programs officer.
“She was an inspiration to many of us”, said Anne Wanjiku, a programme administrator at Ndugu Mdogo. “We shall work with the new administrator to ensure the Community progresses”.
Esther joined Koinonia Community in 2008 as a communications/programs officer and was later appointed as programme manager at Anita Home. In 2009, she was promoted as administrator. Although Esther leaves at a time when her services are required most by the Community, her desire to pursue personal interests could not be stopped.
Herbert Wamalwa, the Community’s Human Resources Manager, recorded his appreciation for the role Esther played when she was at the helm. He called on the incoming administrator to follow in Esther’s footsteps to steer the Community to greater heights.
“I must say I have enjoyed for the time that we have worked together, the environment in central administration has been good and strong with the teamwork that made work easy,” he said.
The climax of the event came when Esther cut the cake to mark the celebrations, which was later followed by presentation of gifts from other colleagues and friends. But the icing on the cake was the unveiling of a glass plaque inscribed with citations highlighting her outstanding achievement at the helm of Koinonia administration.
“Esther Kabugi, 2008. Thanks for the exemplary service to Koinonia community. Asante sana, read the citation.”
In her farewell speech Esther thanked everyone for their support during moments they shared in work.
“I will carry with me so many interesting memories. All of you are interesting people,” she said. “I want to challenge you, if given a task, do it with all your heart, to the best of your ability, and be happy”, she said with a disarming smile.
She jokingly remarked how she was going to miss tea-time at Baraza Cafe, which she described as being the best chance to bond with people.
Later, she presented the symbolic shield and spear to the incoming leader who vowed to fight and defend the Community in his responsibilities.
Kyalo talked of his experience with Esther saying that she had shown him how to be strong through hard times. He called on fellow staff to take up challenges at work and do their best.
“When you are given a responsibility, it either challenges you or you challenge it. For me the responsibility I have been given is a challenge. In life I always say I like challenges, because if there is no challenge, you will not open up. When things are that okay for you, you will not see far, said Kyalo”
In his closing remarks, the Community’s Elder Brother John Ndayishimiye wished everyone whom they have journeyed together in Koinonia best of luck as the year comes to a close. He congratulated both the outgoing and incoming leaders, longing blessings for them all wherever they will be.
The gala night was crowned off with dinner prepared for all staff members who ate and drunk to their fill. It was a colourful night as staffers engaged in lengthy chats, sharing hearty laughter in celebration of the end of a year that was seen challenging to the entire Community.