How the Catholic Community has Intervened in Nairobi-School Tragedy, 8 Deaths Reported

Onlookers at the collapsed two-storey school building at the Precious Talent Top School in Nairobi

What was a normal Monday morning school day at Nairobi’s Precious Talent Top School turned tragic when a wing of a two-storey school building caved in on pupils who had reported to the school located near Ngong Racecourse.

Reports have indicated that eight lives were lost and several dozens injured. Various sources have told ACI Africa how the Catholic community has been involved in helping those who were affected.

“On that Monday, a Redemptorist priest Fr. Omondi, visited the hospital and blessed the bodies of the children who (had) died and prayed for those who were affected,” the administrator of St. Joseph health center-Ngado located next to the school, Sr. Sarah Nyambura told ACI Africa Wednesday.

One of those who lost their lives was a member of the Pontifical Missionary Childhood (PMC) under the Sacred Heart parish in the school neighborhood, multiple sources told ACI Africa.

“The assistant priest of the Sacred Heart Parish Fr. Stephen also offered a prayer service that evening and blessed the entire health facility,” Sr. Nyambura who belongs to the congregation of St. Joseph of Tarbes recalled.


“Since the day of the tragic incident, we (the nuns) together with some other partners such as the Red-cross, Peace and Justice members from Sacred Heart parish, Peace and Justice team from AOSK, Christians within the locality and the emergency and rescue team, it has been a collective responsibility to save lives and give hope,” Sr. Nyambura explained.

Spiritual guidance has also been key while attending to the people who have been affected. 

“We felt it was really our responsibility,” Sr. Josephine Kwenga, assistant coordinator for Justice and Peace in the office of the Association of Sisterhoods of Kenya (AOSK) told ACI Africa.

“We used our resources, such as ambulance, mattresses and other equipment from the health center to provide first aid and save lives when this tragic accident happened,” Sr. Kwenga a member of the congregation of St. Joseph of Tarbes told ACI Africa, noting that the mattresses could not be used again and were burnt.

The tragedy that saw the two-storey classroom building cave in and come down on pupils has cast a spotlight on the structures in some private schools in Kenya and the general safety of learners in schools.

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“The various stakeholders concerned with the education of the more than 800 pupils, including the two levels of government, on Monday pointed fingers at one another as they avoided taking responsibility,” Kenya’s Daily Nation has reported.

“The nuns at St. Joseph Health Center and Tazamania, a faith-based organization, are offering voluntary guiding and counselling services to the traumatized pupils, parents and staff,” the headteacher of Precious Talent Top School Mr. Sammy Ndenge disclosed to ACI Africa Wednesday, appreciating the services which the Catholic health facility is offering to the school following the Monday tragedy.

The Parish Priest of Sacred Heart parish confirmed the involvement of the nuns not only through psychosocial support but also in medical care through a phone interview with ACI Africa.

The Catholic community has been appreciated for its involvement and participation towards this tragic accident as Sr. Kwenga has recalled from a testimony, “We felt this was a home where we could seek refuge, thank you sisters for opening your doors for us.”