Cancelled Summer Jazz Tea Party June 2017

We are so sorry to announce that we have had to cancel our much anticipated Jazz Tea Party which was to have been held at East Woodlands Village Hall on 3rd June.
It’s very sad and a decision that the Trustees have taken with great regret.
We will keep you all up to date with what’s happening!
Thank you, so much, for all your support.

Summer Jazz Tea Party June 2016

Thank you all our supporters and helpers at a very fun and successful JAZZ TEA PARTY. Fabulous music, great cakes,beautiful ceramics, lovely posies , gorgeous baskets from Kenya , and the best book stall ever helped every one go home pleased. Thank you, particularly to the amazing musicians who turned it from a tea party to a jazz party. We made £1k for the children in Kitui. Well done everyone.

Screen Shot 2016-06-18 at 12.29.15Screen Shot 2016-06-18 at 12.29.37Screen Shot 2016-06-18 at 12.29.59Screen Shot 2016-06-18 at 12.27.39Screen Shot 2016-06-18 at 12.29.07Screen Shot 2016-06-18 at 12.28.48


Thank you Once Again to Marston Foods

A team from Mama Upendo joined the biggest  pub quiz in the world. The “Gare Hill Mamas” were in the top 6 of the quizzers. Thank you, Leona MacDonald and team for all your hard work and Marston Foods for your generosity in matching the monies raised. Janet seen with Simon Collinwood from Marston Foods, David Warburton, MP, and other charity representatives.

20151016_105333-1Legacy of Happiness

Recently we have been encouraged by the news that the children have been generously included in the will of a local friend of Mama Upendo .
You too can make a contribution that will make a difference. We can all do something amazing for the world, by remembering Mama Upendo Children’s Trust when making a Will. Your generosity will fuel our children’s future success.


Christmas Sale Raises £600

Neighbours and friends came to buy and support the Mama Christmas Sale at Gare Hill. We did well and the money will be much appreciated by the children in Kitui for Christmas Treats. Thank you, especially, Kisella and Kambua who helped so much. Kambua turns out to be a great saleswoman.






New Trustees Join Mama Upendo

We are very glad to welcome Chris and Lynne Alton as our new Treasurer and Secretary respectively. We are sure their years of experience in the worlds of business and management will enrich the charity and widen our horizons. We are very grateful that they have decided to dedicate some of their time to the running of the Mama Upendo Trust.

New Sponsors for 2015

We want to thank our new supporters who are changing the lives of the children in the Mama Trust home for the better, bringing hope of a brighter future. Thank you to: Marston Foods, J.A.Clark Trust and  Bridge of Hope.

Marston foods logo



image008Academic Success for 2015

This term 7 of our senior school students have decided to change schools in favor of more academically demanding institutions that  also offer single sex education. Before they changed schools our manager Hores attended  “Parents” day at the old school. He learned that Mutinda Julius, from the Mama Upendo home, was the best performing student in the school. All our students received praise from the teachers and many were recommended as having the full potential of making it to the public university.  We are really proud of their determination and hard work. These picture show Hores (centre) at Parents Evening with two of our students.

Frome Food Festival July 2015

Sarah’s African Kitchen for the Mama Upendo Trust

Hundreds queued around the block once again to sample a generous serving of cuisine from Sarah’s, now famous, African Kitchen. We raised a whopping £2,335 for Mama Upendo children and all had a great time doing it. Thank you to all those who came down to support us.

Screen Shot 2015-07-15 at 14.02.06Screen Shot 2015-07-15 at 14.35.10 Screen Shot 2015-07-15 at 14.34.56


Past Events

New Year’s Eve

350 Gather to Celebrate the New Year, African Style

Our guests and supporters had been promised a generous serving of African cuisine and music which would make their New Year’s celebrations truly memorable and the night did not disappoint!

It all began with an impressive solo performance by Kisella Hillman, which certainly drew the crowd’s attention and proved to be a truly outstanding introduction to the night’s entertainment. Meanwhile Frome’s party starved parents breathed a collective sigh of relief as their excited children flooded into the children’s area to be entertained by the brave Claudia Titley and Freya Ellis, before returning with painted faces proudly bearing the beautiful African necklaces and drums they had made.

It was also not long before queues formed around the tables packed with platters of African foods to be served by Sarah and her wonderful band of loyal helpers. After days of preparation the team’s efforts were rewarded by a chorus of compliments and demands for seconds.The night was also blessed by the last minute appearance of the band of drummers which proved to be the perfect support act to the magnificent Congo Soukous Beats. Within moments of their arrival, adults and children of all ages headed towards the dance floor and boogied in unison, only to be separated by the occasional weaving conga dance patrols. As the excitement grew, the time flew by and before long young and old were all celebrating the much anticipated arrival of 2014, as confetti engulfed the stage and audience.


311213-014 311213-022A participant was overheard to reflect on the night stating ‘It proved to be a truly family occasion; an event like no other. Everything was on hand to provide a perfect evening for both parents and children alike; no babysitters were required’.
We would like to say a big thank you to all of our wonderful acts, selfless helpers and the many guests who travelled from all over the UK to help make the event a night which will not be forgotten but hopefully soon relived!


We would also like to wish all of our supporters across the World a very Happy New Year!

008311213-148 311213-179 food



Cranmore Tower Jump

OH my Goodness, what will she do next ! On the 21st of September 2013 Our President Sarah Hillman will be Zip Wiring from the historic 148ft high Cranmore Tower to raise funds for the Mama Upendo Children’s Trust and the SOS Africa charity. Come along and watch to cheer her on. Please sponsor us to help us reach our target here:

African Safari Kitchen

Don’t miss Sarah Hillman and her African safari Kitchen at the World Food feast at the Frome Festival on Saturday 6 July. Enjoy the exotic East African cuisine at this hugely popular free festival event while listening to some of the great local bands. Plenty of space to stand and dance, or sit and relax enjoying food from the most popular food stall at the event.’ All the money raised from the food will go to the Mama Upendo Children’s Home.  The event is located in the Market Yard next to the Cheese and Grain in Frome from 17.30 until 21.30. For more information visit the Frome Festival website at

Jazzmin Fundraising Concert

Also during the Frome Festival an exciting jazz concert which will take place in the Granary at the George Hotel in the Market Place in Frome on Sunday 7 July at 20.00. Entrance £8

‘Jim Jazzmin’ began life several years ago after a very successful gig in the Frome festival. The band are John Plaxton trumpet, Caroline Radcliffe Singer, John Morton Bass, Jim White Drums and Mark Ballamy Piano with Henry Philpotts, Tenor Saxophone making a guest appearance for this performance.

The band bring a very special and accessible musical experience to jazz standards and the American song book, creating a warm, relaxed atmosphere for listening and dancing. Recently the band have had success playing in Wiltshire, Somerset and Bath where audiences love the play between the musicians and Caroline’s beautiful, silky and expressive singing.

Please come and enjoy timeless jazz and contribute directly to the Mama Upendo orphanage. This fundraising concert has been made possible by the generosity of the musicians and the support of the Frome Festival.

We welcome any ideas for fundraising events and encourage those who want to be friends of the Mama Upendo Children’s Home to organise events that will help us to secure the future for the children of the home. We have just completed our business plan and will be applying to various foundations and funding bodies for revenue funding. If anyone individual or business is interested we can send them a copy of the plan. See all plans here


February 2014

Sarah’s planning her TV come back,  soon the African Safari Kitchen could be a regular on your screens.

Click here to view her pilot episode:


Hot work and tasty food at Mama Upendo Food Stall. July 6th 2013


The popular Food Feast was blessed by hot sunshine and founder of the orphanage Sarah Hillman and her big team of family and friends produced her usual fabulous East African food for the crowds. Sarah had been chopping and cooking for 2 days and the enormous pans were scraped clean to satisfy the hungry throngs.  A record for consumption of African food on the hottest day of the year; queues all along the river bank were animated and entertained by the Frome Street Bandits and Acoustic plus.

£1,367 was raised for the orphanage and Sarah travels to Kenya next week to deliver this.



JAZZMIN Frome Festival Review Sun 7 July 2013.

Hotter than July 

The Granary was packed to the rafters for the coolest of jazz on the hottest of nights in aid of Frome based Kenyan charity Mama Upendo Children’s orphanage.

The musical feast began with a recording of children singing Nkosi Sikelel’ iAfrica, a moving reminder of the evening’s purpose, and the international language and power of music.

Then the live music began! Pulsing and toe tapping from the very first note, hotter than a Centre Parcs sauna with a fresh plunge through several jazz favourites including God Bless the Child, Sweet Georgia Brown, and (in Spanish!) What A Difference A Day Makes.

The brilliantly accomplished & fluent core band: Jim White (drums), John Plaxton (trumpet), Hank Philpotts (tenor sax), Jon Green (guitar), Jon Martin (bass guitar) Mark Ballamy (piano), Caroline Radcliffe (vocals) were joined by magnificent impromptu guest appearances by pianist Adam Biggs, and Duncan Anselm (alto sax) and a cameo from Sara Vian singing Autumn leaves & Black Coffee. Guest star, internationally acclaimed saxophonist Iain Ballamy (listed in BBC’s 100 jazz legends between Chet Baker and Count Basie!), dashed back from a trip north to lead the band and wow the audience in the final two numbers of the night; Duke Ellington’s ‘In a Sentimental Mood’ and Antonio Carlos Jobim’s ‘How Insensitive’. The small stage brimmed with complementary performances and improvisations, gracious, skilful and wide-ranging in tone and feeling.

By the end of the evening the entire audience was on its feet whooping appreciation for the dozen highly talented professional and non-professional jazz artists, several with international reputations, who had come together to create what will no doubt be recalled as one of the Frome Festival highlights. A special round of warm applause greeted Frome born Jim White, not only for his magnificent playing – honed over 50 years of jazz drumming – but for bringing such a fantastic band of musicians together in such a good cause: each of them playing for the love of it, with every penny raised going directly to the charity.

Reviewed by [email protected]    11th July 2013



Trust update June 2013

We had a very successful AGM in May, our first! We celebrated not only our first full year as a formal UK charity but also the launch of our wonderful new website. Martin Bax stepped down as Chair of the Trust. We were so very sad to see him go and thanked him for all his extraordinary skills, enthusiasm and energy he ha put into the setting up and establishing of the charity. Janet Millar has kindly agreed to take the role of Chair.
It was a packed meeting, generously hosted by Sarah Hillman and there were lots of fund raising ideas.
The minutes of the AGM are available on this website.
See you all at the African Safari Food feast stall, July 6th, and then at the Jazzmin concert, July 7th!






Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *