Fire Tragedy at AIC Zion School

VIDEO 2 Days after fire @ AIC School
video-1482943819 (1).mp4
MP4 video/audio file [4.0 MB]


AIC Zion Drama Team Places Third Nationally

In August, the AIC Zion Drama Team placed third in Kenya's national drama competition... an incredible accomplishment for the students and their teachers!  Coached by Stanley Wambua, the headmaster of AIC Zion School, the drama team has devoted endless hours to rehearsing and refining their synchronized speeches, which include a story about creating treasure from trash and a message about national peace and unity.



AIC Zion Church and School Compound Fire

It has been very difficult for all working through the emotions of such great loss due to this fire. The school is back in session and the teachers and students are managing the best they can with the space and building that are avaliable. We have recently received the offical damage and loss report, which totals $40,000.00 USD.

Please continue reading for more detailed information and consider how you can be involed in the rebuilding process. Donations can be made by going to the DONATE tab above and following the PayPal instructions.


AIC Zion is an African Inland Church ministry that is located in the Mathare Valley slums of Nairobi, Kenya.  Estimates are that these slums are home to as many as half a million people in an area of about three square miles.  Twelve years ago, AIC Zion began their school because few children in the slum have the opportunity or money for education.  Today the school offers education and meals for 680 children from kindergarten to 10th grade.  In a couple of years, AIC Zion will have their first high school graduation.


Unfortunately, the wonder of the incredible hope generated by AIC Zion has been temporarily hindered by tragedy.  On December 26th, a fire started near the church and school compound.  The source of the fire is unknown at this time.  There are no fire corridors in the slums and little to no water supply, allowing the fire to spread.  The fire affected the AIC Zion compound, destroying some buildings and damaging others.  Thankfully, no one was injured in the fire.  AIC Zion reports the following damage:

  • Destroyed: Building Block C - 6 Classrooms, the Youth Hall, the Deputy Head Teacher's office, and the Primary School staffroom. Loss of all Desks, Textbooks and other furniture.
  • Damaged: Building Block B - Classrooms and the Women's Hall were partly desestroyed because of the fire and rescue operations.
  • Damaged: The Prayer Room due to theft.
  • Also destroyed was much of fencing and compound walls because of the fire and the efforts to stop the fire.

The cost to rebuild Building Block C and repair other buildings, replace classroom desks and textbooks, drill a borehole for permanent water supply, rebuild the compound wall/fencing, and other repairs is estimated to be $40,000 USD. 


Click on the PDF below for pictures that show some of the damage.

AIC Zion Fire Pictures .pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [901.1 KB]

Updated information on December 29, 2016,

See message below from Rev. Johnson Wambua with details of what happened:


Kindly pray for us to recover from fire damage. As you may have learn from social media there was fire in mathare slum and our school and church was affected in a great way.

The fire affected us physically and psychologically hence need of your prayers.  The big block occupying youth hall, 7 class rooms, staff room, deputy head teacher was burned. This block is on the Northern side of the school.
We lost desks, tables, text books, chairs, etc. in the fire . We area working on the actual loss.Pray God to provide funds for reconstruction and replacement of equipment and furniture.  
Parents and church members had been calling hence they are affected psychologically, so pray for me to have the words to encourage them, as I encourage myself. I was affected emotionally for the school was burned, while I was looking at it helpless because of lack of water hence need of borehole. Pray for this need as to supply us with water daily. It was during Christmas season and all our elders were out of the city because of the same celebrations. The pastors were also on leave so I had to address the whole problem with the caretaker alone.Now most elders have cut their celebrations and pastors have come hence I am now healing on emotionally and I thank God for that.
Pray for us.
This fire started on Tuesday,  27th , December, 2016, at 6 pm Kenya time and spread very fast and within 30 minutes the church youth hall was on fire. It took us, parents, church members 4 hours to put off the fire reason lack of water.  The fact that we do not have fire corridors space between us and the slum, fire got us very easy; pray we get fire corridor around the school as it is with church.
Church leaders will meet tonight to make plan for way forward, so pray for them as they discuss about how ; reconstruction, replacements and controlling fire in future.
Pray for us and be blessed.
Rev. Wambua


Pictures below show the Damage by the fire. The Youth Hall that has 7 Classroom on second level are completely gone. The side wall of the Library Building has been burned away, leaving the building open.


Please contact us via our email listed on contact page or copy paste into your email, with any questions.


Thank you,

The Boardmembers of Welcome the Children


Children seeing the damage
Classroom Buildings before fire
Buildings after fire

First post of Fire:


December 27, 2016, We have just learned of a tragic fire that has burned many dwellings in the Mathare Valley area and has also consummed Classrooms and the Youth Hall at our AIC Zion School. As we learn more of the details, we will provide updates.

PLEASE be in prayer to our Lord for a peace and comfort that only he can provide for all the families and the school children.  


We need to seek His sovereign will over this situation and humble ourselves to serve His people, however He leads us.


Thank you,

The Boardmembers of Welcome the Children


School Growth

In countries, like Kenya, the educational system is quite different than here in the USA. The school system is organized in a way that all students MUST recieve an 8th Grade Level education and then pass a Final Exam, before moving on to 4 more years of a High School education (Form School).

In 2011, AIC Zion School only provided classes for Grades K through Class 6. Welcome the Children, in its first year, contacted the school administration and began focusing on the addition of grades 7 and 8. Through the grace of God and our Partners the First 8th Grade Graduating Class celebration was held in November 2013.


8th Grade Class 2013

Comment below Posted 2013: 

We just received great news that the Class 8 from AIC Zion received the results from their national exam (KCPE) and all students did well and are eligible for secondary school! 
The message included the following from Johnson Wambua, our primary contact in Kenya "The area chief has praised us, local government here is happy...and I am happy my dreams are being realized, praise God, these children will transform Kenya one day!"
Thank you all for your support of this wonderful place. The support is making a huge impact!!


We are so PROUD of our students and coming up this November 2015, will be the 3rd 8th Grade graduating class!  

Thanks (Asante) for your partnership.

Classroom Buildings Added

The building to the right houses the classes for grades 6, 7, and 8, which was also made possible by our donors' support. 

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