Congratulations to all Graduates!

It's hard to imagine how anyone manages to get through a global pandemic. The year started off normal, then suddenly the world came to an abrupt and very unusual halt.

We were all told to stay indoors, stay away from each other, cover our faces, and prepare for the worst. We saw heart-wrenching visuals in cities and places we never imagined would accommodate the trauma they endured.

Students especially were hit hard from the pandemic. Schools closed indefinitely, study and social gatherings cancelled, classes transformed from physical in-person lectures to virtual zoom classrooms online. Many of us wondered how Seniors especially would make it through their last year in school.

Several months after the pandemic first hit, and right around the peak months of graduation, Seniors managed to bring on a refreshing sense of hope. In the midst of so much trauma, many remained determined to make it through and Graduate! Imagine the joy lifted in the hearts of families and households, as their sons and daughters proudly received their diplomas, degrees, and certificates.

The Njau Family in Texas, USA was one of the families Basket of Ajo had the pleasure of serving. We received a request from Takura Njau's Mother Annette, for custom canvases displaying motivational messages from Takura's Parents and Aunts.

Along with the Gift package, was an additional request for a large 16 by 20 canvas with a silhouette of the High School Graduate, Takura, playing his favorite sport, basketball. Words were sent to his parents from friends and relatives describing Takura over the years and these words were inserted into the silhouette as an embodiment of Takura's identity.

All canvases were finished with the signature Basket of Ajo paint mix to add layers and feel, with an artistic touch to what may last in Takura's private memory collection for a long time.

It was an amazing and inspirational experience working with the Njau family, not only in helping to bring out his identity and motivation through the gifts, but to see the joy and celebration in the spirit of Takura's parents, family, and friends as they celebrated his milestone achievement, the new Graduate.