Project Description

madina2March 2013 – Madina, a Somalian mother of 5, came to the USA when she was pregnant with Luul who is now a student in our Kingdom Academy. In her effort to assimilate in the community she sought help at the International Institute where she learned about E.S.O.L classes offered at Kingdom House. She became proficient enough in English that she was able to act as an interpreter for other Somalians and was a part-time interpreter at the International Institute for about 10 months.

Needing to improve her reading and writing skills she enrolled in GED classes at Kingdom House while continuing in E.S.O.L. Medina has encouraged her sister and other Somalians in the neighborhood to better their futures by taking advantage of the services offered by the agency such as after school and daycare programs.

Both sisters attended the first session of Places for People parenting classes as well as our first Financial Literacy class sponsored by Carrollton Bank. With information gained from the class, Medina opened a savings account at the new St. Louis Community Credit Union micro-branch located in Kingdom House. Because Kingdom House has helped her family in so many ways, she says “I don’t know what I would do without Kingdom House. Kingdom House is my home.” She encourages others to join her in taking advantage of the programs offered by the agency to better their lives.

Luul, an 11th grade student, is a member of Kingdom Academy who spends 20 hours a week volunteering at the agency for class credit at her high school. A highlight of the 6 week Academy Summer program was a course in financial literacy in which she learned the importance of financial planning, money management and the importance of saving a percentage of each paycheck. She was one of the first Kingdom Academy teens to open her own savings account.

When her computer broke, she stopped adding to her saving account in order to get it fixed and because she knows how important saving is, is again working at making deposits. With a goal of attending Film Connection Film Institute to learn about film production and screen writing when she finishes high school, she is saving for the tuition.
Lu says that without the summer class, she would not know the importance of saving.

Your Investment Transforms Lives through the Programs and Services at Kingdom House

Educational Programs – including ESOL and GED classes that help Madina be better able to support her family.

Kingdom Academy – Helping teens like Luul learn and prepare for their future by completing high school and going to college.

St. Louis Community Credit Union micro-branch – helping with financial planning and affordable banking services.

Together Empowering the Advancement of members (T.E.A.M.) – working together to develop a holistic plan with individuals and families that promotes empowerment and growth.

Recipes from Madina Abdi

10 tortillas (folia in Somali)
1 lb. ground beef
1 onion, chopped
few cloves of garlic
pinch of salt
green pepper, chopped (optional)
potato, chopped (optional)
carrot, chopped (optional)
handful of cilantro (chopped)
1 tsp. curry powder


  1. Brown meat until cooked. Add chopped onion and garlic. Add cilantro, (green pepper, potato, carrots – if you like) Add black pepper. Add curry powder.
  2. Separate a tortilla. Glue it (with flour and water mixture) intohalf triangle. Spoon filling into the tortilla and close it with the glue. Make sure there are no holes – it will send grease up when you put it in the fryer.
  3. Cook in deep fryer, until golden brown.
This would make a big serving (family-size)

6 cups of rice
lamb or goat meat
2 onions
4 cloves of garlic
1 tsp cardamom
cumin seed (1/2 tsp ground)
cilantro (handful, chopped)
chicken bouillon (4 cubes)
curry powder (to taste)
canola oil


  1. Take about 6 large cups of rice and soak them in warm (not hot) water. Set off to the side.
  2. For the meat—use goat meat or lamb—enough to fill a medium sized soup pot. (You may have to get goat meat at the African store). Boil the meat in water with a little salt, 1 chopped onion and a couple of cloves of garlic (chopped).
  3. Meanwhile, combine 1 medium onion (chopped), 2-3 cloves of garlic (grind it), 1 tsp of cardamom, cilantro (chop a handful), 1/2 tsp. ground cumin seed, and 4 large cubes of chicken bouillon. Combine all with canola oil and fry until well-mixed.
  4. Drain the water from the boiled meat into a container. Then pour that water in with the fried mixture from step 3 to make a broth. Let it boil a couple of minutes.
  5. Take the rice you set aside and drain the water it soaked in. Pour the rice into the broth mixture.
  6. Let the rice cook 5 minutes. Lower the heat. Keep stirring until it’s absorbed most of the broth.
  7. You can fry the goat meat or lamb in oil with some onion and curry powder. Serve the meat and rice separately.