This is our history
To tell the history of RUSH we must begin with the founders Lucy and Andrew Amukowa. The reason they wanted to start RUSH was because of Lucy's own upbringing. Her childhood story was one of suffering and hardship, and she does not want others to suffer in the same way.
Lucy's mother died during childbirth, consequently she was brought up by her grandmother until she was eight years old, when her grandmother died during famine time. For some time, Lucy lived alone, surviving on wild fruits and plants and then after a while, some relatives heard about her situation and provided her with some food. However, some relatives were not so kind and Lucy still has the scars to prove it. Some time later, Lucy's father lost his sight and was forced to come back home from working in Nairobi. Lucy was the only child available to look after him, and so she went to live with him. Life was still hard for her though, even with her father around. Money was short, and school fees were generally not feasible. However, Lucy was determined to go to school. But with no source of income, she could only pray for the money. It so happened that one day, she was sitting in a guava tree, begging God to send some money so that she could get an education. Then, all of a sudden, a hawk dropped a chicken out of its grasp, and it fell right into the tree where Lucy was sitting. She was able to breed these chickens and her teacher at school accepted chickens instead of school-fees.
Later on, because of the bad treatment she was still receiving, she went to live in Nairobi, where she met Andrew. They married and lived together in Kibera slums. Andrew was working in the city, and whilst he was out, Lucy would go and visit people in the slums. She would share about Jesus, pray with people, counsel them about their problems and encourage them.
After seven years working there, Lucy felt it was time to move on. She started praying, asking God where they should go. One night, Lucy woke up at three a.m. and told Andrew they had to move to Kakamega, leaving his secure job and prospects of promotion. Seven days later, they moved to Kakamega, without a house to move to, without a job to go to, and no source of income. However, God was faithful and things worked out in His timing.
With some money which Andrew had saved, he set up a shop and bar. Lucy, meanwhile, was making friends with the local community, visiting people in their homes. She went round to people's houses, especially the underprivileged and those outcast by society. Here she would listen to their problems, counsel them, share the message of Jesus and pray with them. Many were lonely and in need of company, and Lucy was able to provide that.
The people who were served at the bar were also lonely and trying to drown their sorrows in alcohol. Lucy was then able to come alongside them and befriend them, at the same time showing them that Jesus is a better answer to their problems than alcohol. They began to change, until sixteen of them accepted Jesus into their lives and stopped drinking. Eventually, Lucy and Andrew remained with one customer, as the rest had ceased drinking alcohol. The bar had to be shut down. The people still wanted friendship and so Lucy arranged for them all to meet together on Tuesdays and Fridays. The bar was then transformed into a meeting place, where people would share testimonies of God?s faithfulness, pray and worship together. Lucy and Andrew began to pay school-fees for some of the children with money they had saved from their businesses.
The shop also failed, because the people Lucy had reached would come and eat there and not be able to pay, so Lucy would give them the food free-of-charge. With business management this generous, the shop ceased to function. The rooms became the RUSH building, with space for carpentry, tailoring, an office, a kitchen and the main meeting hall.
From then on, it grew into what is now known as RUSH.