Home Sweet Home
Published on 16 February, 2017
A keen baker has completed her epic task to build a destitute family a home by selling homemade tablet.
Margaret Bayne baked 873 trays of the delicious treat and sold bars at £1 each to raise nearly £10,500 to ensure that widow Elizabeth Charo and her four children have a permanent roof over their heads.
The grandmother of five from Perth was spurned into action after she heard from a neighbour that the family from Kenya had been squatting on a beach for five years.
Mrs Bayne turned to a talent she learned at the age of 14 and set about baking trays of Tablet – a Scottish delicacy similar to fudge - in her kitchen over the course of 2014-15.
The retired social worker, who attends North Church in Perth, sold the popular treat to friends, acquaintances and members of the public to raise £10,476.
Mrs Bayne admitted she had to overcome doubters who never thought such a feat was possible but said her belief in God helped her through.
The Perth street pastor travelled to Kenya in 2015 to meet and hand over the keys to Vanilla Cottage in Kikambala to Elizabeth but the final stage of the construction – roof and rendering – was only completed earlier this year.
The astonishing achievement means that Mrs Charo and her children , Philip, 14, Kezia, 12, Daniel, 10 and Caroline, 7, have gone from starving on the Kenyan coastline to thriving in a village an hour’s drive from Mombassa.
Mrs Bayne advised future Kirk fundraisers to “have a vision and keep focussed on the dream”.
Her remarkable ability to secure donations has attracted interest from groups across Perth.
Mrs Bayne recently gave a presentation to the Perth Guild who were interested to learn about the secret of her success.
She revealed she had been asked to embark on other fundraising drives but was “taking a rest” to enjoy time with her grandchildren.
Mrs Bayne joked that her success means her husband, Bruce, can “stop worrying about the gas bill”.
She has no immediate plans to visit Vanilla Cottage, which she named herself because she used the sweet essence in her baking and cottage is a Scottish word.
But Mrs Bayne keeps in regular contact with the family, via letters, who write to tell her about how much their lives have improved.