It is with very real sadness that we report the death of Hazel Prestwich, who passed away on September 21st after a very short battle with cancer. Hazel supported Amani UK’s work in Kenya from 1999 and was a Trustee from 2002, visiting the projects every year until November 2014. Hazel, who lived with husband John in Derby, was greatly loved both here in the UK and in Kenya, and that is best demonstrated by the tribute below. (Jim Leftwich)
On behalf of Upendo Federation staﬀ and community groups, we wish to convey our sincere condolences to the family of John Prestwich for the demise of our beloved mum Hazel. It is with deep sorrow and sadness for the untimely loss of Hazel, which took all of us by shock.
For all of us who knew Hazel, so much can be shared of the good work she did in her time at the Amani project. For 16 years we knew Hazel, as she and John went through the good and diﬃcult times with the Amani community. They took care of the running of the Amani project while the late Elizabeth Feilden was away in the UK and this created for them an opportunity to interact with the community members and to learn more about the needs in the community. They endured all the problems which came and made a great impact in changing things. A couple with a humble background, Hazel and John were always ready to listen to the diﬀerent problems the community members brought to them. Without considering boundaries, Hazel paid very keen attention to what everyone said. As a Christian family on mission work, they helped change the spiritual and social lives of many, and at all times put their eﬀorts before God in prayer. Hazel became a community name as she made friends with the many diﬀerent people they supported in the community and the church.
Not to forget that many schools also beneﬁted from Hazel’s initiatives and connections with diﬀerent donors. She donated uniforms and furniture and helped to improve learning facilities, which beneﬁted many orphans directly. She sponsored a number of orphans and there has been a lot of change and transformation in the lives of many of the orphans as a result. We are humbled by this and pray for John and his family for strength to overcome this trying moment. We all know it is God who brought Hazel to this world and has now taken her back. Hazel, we loved you but God loved you most. May the almighty God rest your soul in eternal peace. Amen.
Leonard Odongo, on behalf of the projects.
In November 2014, John and Hazel, together with regular team companions, Jim and Edna and Peter Shaw, said final farewells to Kenya in a joyful but emotional party.