Skills for Living began in 1991 in the US as a weekly group for women. A men’s groups began one year later. The purpose of the programme was to help people to overcome the situations in their lives that prevented them from living a full and abundant life.
Today, Skills for Living courses have been taught in over 13 countries around the world and in the British Prison System.
Our main thrust for the forseeable future is our work in Kenya which currently oversees 9 preschools. These and our other projects in Kenya span from the western border with Uganda to Mombasa on the eastern coast. The following are some milestones in our history:
- • In 1993 Walt and Valerie began conducting classes for the prevention of domestic abuse and went on to train facilitators to oversee groups for both victims and perpetrators.
- • Later that same year Valerie began holding retreats to help people in a more concentrated format to overcome the barriers that were holding them back in relationships and life.
- • In 1994 they were invited to the UK to hold the first retreat in that country. People liked what they experienced and Walt and Valerie were invited back again and again.
- • 1996 – UK Prisons picked up the material and began using it for weekly groups
- • 1996 – Developed a 12-session program: Building Healthy Relationships in an Unhealthy World. Currently the material is used in a weekly group format and retreats.
- • 1998 to Present – Walt and Valerie made a permanent move to the UK
They continue to conduct retreats, train facilitators, develop material and speak.
- • 2001 – They were invited to hold a conference in Kenya in Dec. 2001
Following the conference they were asked to oversee a number of churches there for teaching and training. In August of 2002 they returned to Kenya to train 82 local leadersfor 4 days with Building Healthy Relationships. Dec. 2002 they returned for another conference.
- • January 2003 – Tim Broughton, co-Director of Mount Zion Orphanage and Valerie travelled to Kenya together to unravel some serious problems that had been raised. Together they reorganised both Mount Zion and Skills for Living in that country.
- • February – March 2003 – Walt and Valerie travelled to Melbourne, Australia to encourage a church group there and help train others in the A Life Worth Loving and Building Healthy Relationships material. Then they went to Pasadena, California and trained a group in the Building Healthy Relationships material.
- • April 2004 – Walt and Valerie headed up a 13-member team from the US and the UK to Kenya for 12 days to conduct a 3-day training conference for local leaders, their wives and teachers, visit all schools and projects, and encourage the Executive Committee there.
- • June 2007 – Skills for Living is overseeing ProjectKenya.co.uk to build several community centers to teach programs such as HIV/AIDS Prevention
- • June 2006 – In Kenya 59 facilitators were trained to teach classes in HIV/AIDS prevention. All 25 community centers we have built providing classes, teaching and counselling on both the prevention of this disease and the care needed for those who have it.
- • October 2007 – Walt passed away. Valerie is continuing the work in Kenya.