Dorota and Mirosław Gwiżdż
Founders of the MISSION OF LOVE FOUNDATION and members of the Foundation’s Council. We are a happily married couple and parents to two sons and two daughters, as well as friends to all of the children from Upendo Children’s Home in Kenya, whom we have been providing with support for several years. We are Poles living in Ireland. It has always been our hearts’ desire to give selfless help, especially to children who have been harmed, abandoned and are unwanted, who often have no family or even bread to eat. They too deserve a dignified life and love. We have been blessed to create the Foundation as a tool for bringing that desire to life and will spare no efforts on helping the MISSION OF LOVE FOUNDATION to bring love and hope to all those who need it. We hope our Foundation can bring a smile to many children’s faces.
President, happy missionary serving in Kenya. I am not a naturally brave person, so my missionary calling was a surprising discovery and the beginning of a completely new chapter in my life. As a religious and passionate person, somewhat of an idealist, I risked everything to go to Kenya and, since 2012, I have been invested with all my heart in missionary service to the poorest, in whom I desire to serve Christ. For more than 25 years I have been fascinated by the do-good charism of St. Luigi Orione and the charism of charity of St. Mother Theresa. Inspired by the examples of their lives, I left all human security behind to become, as a missionary in Kenya, sister and mother to those to whom Divine Providence might send me. To me, the Friends of Upendo Group, having functioned for several years now on social media, and the MISSION OF LOVE FOUNDATION are no works of accident but instruments of Divine Providence working through people with boundless hearts. As a missionary, I have witnessed many miracles and have to believe that more of them will be the share of all those who in any way decide to embark on a missionary adventure with MISSION OF LOVE FOUNDATION. Deo gratias!
Vice-President, passionate about gardens, and a chemist by choice, i.e. an explosive mix with a pinch of love in my heart. As a mother of two daughters, I cannot be indifferent to the fate of children in need, so I desire to help more and more children. For several years now, I have regularly supported girls from the Upendo Children’s Home in Kenya, and I desire to expand this help further. I am an incorrigible optimist by choice, one who always sees the glass half full. My heart is open to the world around me, which I love to absorb and learn. As a happy wife and mother, by my attitude I always teach my children to love thy neighbour, dreaming of a world that gives an equal opportunity to everybody. I adore gardens, I love to travel around and talk to people, because they are the ones who create the world we live in. I deeply believe everyone deserves happiness and respect. Alas, the world is not an ideal place, but a helping human hand can give a whole new sense to life. This exactly is what our Friends of Upendo Group does, a group of which I am truly proud and overjoyed to also be a member. As vice-president, I will always strive for as many children as possible to get help from our MISSION OF LOVE FOUNDATION.
Council chair, founder of the Friends of Upendo Group, pharmacist. I am an optimist and look at the world with a smile and faith. Nothing is impossible. I never give up, believing that dreams come true, though sometimes you have to wait. My dream is to go to Kenya and see the realities of life and the needs of children in Africa. It has always been my passion to help the poorest and most vulnerable children, which, with God’s assistance and the help of many kind hearts from Friends of Upendo Group, has borne fruit in the MISSION OF LOVE FOUNDATION. I have always been inspired by St. Mother Theresa and especially her motto: ‘We ourselves feel that what we are doing is just a drop in the ocean. But the ocean would be less because of that missing drop.’ I trust that God’s assistance will see to it that, through the Foundation, we can change the difficult lot of many people and bring smiles to their faces. I believe that children in Kenya can grow up in love and good conditions and have access to education that will give them a better future. The foundation, thanks to the presence of members and volunteers among the needy on the ground, can make it so many children and adults stop starving.
Council member, owner of MG Miroslaw Contracting Ltd., a man with a very sensitive heart who always places the good of another human being first. I am open to and always submit to God’s will. I believe it is only with God we can do great things. He has a plan for every single one of us. He sent my wife and me to Ireland, where we live and find fulfilment by being tools in His hands. My wife has infected me with the bug of helping, so together we want to selflessly bring love and help to our neighbour in need, especially the poorest in Kenya. One stone will build nothing, but the more stones, the more beautiful the edifice that rises up. I believe that, together, we can help many a neighbour and especially children living in poverty, so that they too can fulfil their dreams as we and children do.
Member of the Foundation’s Council, accountant, estate agent. I spent twelve years in Ireland, where I worked and raised my son and met many wonderful people, including Dorota and Mirek. For five years now I have been living in Poland. I love challenges and try to make dreams come true. I believe in the power of prayer. God has a plan for each of us. Being a mother has changed my outlook on the world. Every child deserves a life with dignity. Helping means caring for the happiness of another human being. I am overjoyed and thankful for being able to be part of this great work of helping children in Kenya.
Volunteer. For as long as I can remember, I have always wanted to become a volunteer; I could never bear to watch the suffering of another, let alone a child. The desire to leave for the missions had been a distant dream — an unrealistic one. However, certain events in my life motivated me to act. The opportunity to go to Kenya appeared all of a sudden. And though the thought of leaving was stressful, I knew there was nothing to think about. And so I spent several weeks at UPENDO in 2017. I lived with amazing girls who, despite their difficult histories, would infect you with their laughter and joy. Following my return to Poland, I did not think I would once again go to Kenya. I helped as much as I could remotely. Every day, however, I returned to UPENDO with my thoughts. After five years, I am once again going to spend several months in Africa, helping the Foundation’s children on the ground. It is unbelievable how God is putting all this together.
Volunteer and beloved granny at Upendo. Wife, mother to three adult children, granny to many Polish and African grandkids; a retiree fulfilling dreams she never before would have dared dream. I had never thought that travelling to a different continent would be within my reach. Divine Providence, however, has its own plans, and I discovered we should not put limits on those. Thanks to my daughter’s missionary work, Africa has become a second home to me, and here, on the ground, I can help the Foundation’s children. For many years I have been supporting the missionary activity in any way I can. Not having much, I rejoice in being today able to share first of all my presence and find fulfilment as a missionary granny in Kenya, accompanying my daughter in the various missionary projects. In 2022, I came to Upendo Children’s Home for a third time, which I cannot imagine will be my last time in Kenya. Thanks to the Friends of Upendo, I have met wonderful people and hope we can write together more beautiful memories into the hearts of Kenyan children and such other people as God may let us meet and surround with love.
Plenipotentiary and Representative of the Foundation in the media
A social worker by degree. An artistic soul, sensitive to the suffering of others. I am involved in various social projects, thanks to which I can help people in need and so that I can fulfil myself in many areas that are important to me. I organize various meetings integrating the local community and bringing together people with the same passions. The idea of helping Kenyan children and their families has always been close to my heart, but I could not commit to permanent financial support. Institutions conducting remote adoption, which I checked, did not offer such a possibility because their financial threshold was too high for me and my family. Only the Mission of Love Foundation gave me such an opportunity. I am involved in supporting the Mission of Love Foundation even before its formal establishment. From September 2021, I have had wonderful Joyce under my care. By being in a team of people carrying out this great missionary work, I want to contribute to the development of the Foundation and spreading information about it through cooperation with the mass media.