Episodes

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An Unusual Arrangement20180925

Two very different families join together to raise a baby - and change each others' lives.

Two families from very different backgrounds, one street and a baby on a doorstep. This series charts the story of a young Christian couple entrusting the care of their little daughter to a Muslim family that lived across the way in 1990s Watford. They were strangers but the couple - Peris Mbuthia and Martin Gitonga - needed help, as immigrants from Kenya working in low paid jobs with a child to support and no family to step in. They were struggling and their relationship was under strain.
Through a friend, the Zafars offered to help. It was a generous offer although Peris wasn't sure at first that this family from another country and another culture was the answer because the two households seemed to have nothing in common. But on the brink of losing their jobs, the couple simply had to give it a go. No money was involved, no checks or references. The Zafars weren't child minders, just willing neighbours meaning everything was done on trust.

It was an unusual arrangement. So how would this unlikely scenario change the lives of those involved?

A special, enduring bond developed between Sandra and the Zafar's daughter Saiqa. It is a story of faith, love and tolerance - a modern day telling of how it takes a village to raise a child.

In Episode Two, the arrangement takes shape. How will baby Sandra adjust to life on the other side of the street?

Producer: Sally Chesworth
Sound: Richard Hannaford
Editor: Gail Champion
Exec Editor: Richard Knight.

Doorstep Daughter - Omnibus20181229

Two families from very different backgrounds, one street and a baby on a doorstep. This series charts the story of how a young Christian couple came to entrust the care of their little daughter to a Muslim family that lived nearby in 1990s Watford. They were strangers but the couple - Peris Mbuthia and Martin Gitonga - needed help, as immigrants from Kenya working in low paid jobs with a child to support and no family to step in. They were struggling and their relationship was under strain. Early one morning, Martin left his flat with six month old Sandra zipped inside his jacket and handed her over to the Zafars across the road while he went to work at a warehouse. This arrival at the door was an event that changed the course of all their lives - that day the baby girl became the Zafars' Doorstep Daughter. And a special, enduring bond developed between Sandra and the Zafar’s daughter Saiqa. It is a story of faith, trust and love - a modern day telling of how it takes a village to raise a child.

In this first episode, Peris and Martin meet as they begin their new lives in London and Saiqa is on a gap year, deciding what will be in store for her. Then along comes a baby.

Producer: Sally Chesworth
Sound: Richard Hannaford
Editor: Gail Champion
Exec Editor: Richard Knight

Two very different families join together to raise a baby - and change each others' lives.

How two very different families came together to raise a baby in 1990s Watford.

Doubts And Deliberations20180926

Two very different families join together to raise a baby - and change each others' lives.

Two families from very different backgrounds, one street and a baby on a doorstep.

This series charts the story of how a young Christian couple came to entrust the care of their little daughter to a Muslim family that lived nearby in 1990s Watford. They were strangers but the couple - Peris Mbuthia and Martin Gitonga - needed help, as immigrants from Kenya working in low paid jobs with a child to support and no family to step in. They were struggling and their relationship was under strain. Early one morning, Martin left his flat with six month old Sandra zipped inside his jacket and handed her over to the Zafars across the road while he went to work at a warehouse. This arrival at the door was an event that changed the course of all their lives - that day the baby girl became the Zafars' Doorstep Daughter. And a special, enduring bond developed between Sandra and the Zafar's daughter Saiqa. It is a story of faith, trust and love - a modern day telling of how it takes a village to raise a child.

Episode 3 finds little Sandra now living at the heart of the Zafar household, heading home only for alternate weekends. It seems to suit everyone. But then doubts creep in and critics of this unusual arrangement start to snipe from the sidelines. Is this the perfect situation after all?

Producer: Sally Chesworth
Sound: Richard Hannaford
Editor: Gail Champion
Exec Editor: Richard Knight.

The Consequences20180928

Two very different families join together to raise a baby - and change each others' lives.

Two families from very different backgrounds, one street and a baby on a doorstep. This series charts the story of how a young Christian couple came to entrust the care of their little daughter to a Muslim family that lived nearby in 1990s Watford. They were strangers but the couple - Peris Mbuthia and Martin Gitonga - needed help, as immigrants from Kenya working in low paid jobs with a child to support and no family to step in. They were struggling and their relationship was under strain. Early one morning, Martin left his flat with six month old Sandra zipped inside his jacket and handed her over to the Zafars across the road while he went to work at a warehouse. This arrival at the door was an event that changed the course of all their lives - that day the baby girl became the Zafars' Doorstep Daughter. And a special, enduring bond develops between Sandra and the Zafar's daughter Saiqa. It is a story of faith, trust and love - a modern day telling of how it takes a village to raise a child.

In many ways it was an ideal arrangement. Sandra's parents built their careers and stabilised their relationship while little Sandra stayed with the Zafars. In turn the Zafars had all the rewards of watching Sandra grow through the baby and toddler years, filling a gap in their lives that reconnected them as a family too.

When Peris and Martin had immigration issues and decided to return to Kenya the relationship had to end and no one felt that more harshly than Saiqa. had cared for little Sandra, her Doorstep Daughter, like a mum through her formative late teen years.

In this final episode, those involved explore the lasting consequences of what was a very unusual arrangement and the sacrifices that made it work.

Producer: Sally Chesworth
Sound: Richard Hannaford
Editor: Gail Champion
Exec Editor: Richard Knight.

The Handover20180924

Two very different families join together to raise a baby - and change each others' lives.

Two families from very different backgrounds, one street and a baby on a doorstep. This series charts the story of how a young Christian couple came to entrust the care of their little daughter to a Muslim family that lived nearby in 1990s Watford. They were strangers but the couple - Peris Mbuthia and Martin Gitonga - needed help, as immigrants from Kenya working in low paid jobs with a child to support and no family to step in. They were struggling and their relationship was under strain. Early one morning, Martin left his flat with six month old Sandra zipped inside his jacket and handed her over to the Zafars across the road while he went to work at a warehouse. This arrival at the door was an event that changed the course of all their lives - that day the baby girl became the Zafars' Doorstep Daughter. And a special, enduring bond developed between Sandra and the Zafar's daughter Saiqa. It is a story of faith, trust and love - a modern day telling of how it takes a village to raise a child.

In this first episode, Peris and Martin meet as they begin their new lives in London and Saiqa is on a gap year, deciding what will be in store for her. Then along comes a baby.

Producer: Sally Chesworth
Sound: Richard Hannaford
Editor: Gail Champion
Exec Editor: Richard Knight.

The Reunion20180927

Two very different families join together to raise a baby - and change each others' lives.

Two families from very different backgrounds, one street and a baby on a doorstep. This series charts the story of how a young Christian couple came to entrust the care of their little daughter to a Muslim family that lived nearby in 1990s Watford. They were strangers but the couple - Peris Mbuthia and Martin Gitonga - needed help, as immigrants from Kenya working in low paid jobs with a child to support and no family to step in. They were struggling and their relationship was under strain. Early one morning, Martin left his flat with six month old Sandra zipped inside his jacket and handed her over to the Zafars across the road while he went to work at a warehouse. This arrival at the door was an event that changed the course of all their lives - that day the baby girl became the Zafars' Doorstep Daughter. And a special, enduring bond develops between Sandra and the Zafar's daughter Saiqa. It is a story of faith, trust and love - a modern day telling of how it takes a village to raise a child. Doubts arise though when Sandra's first words are in Urdu and critics in the community start unkind rumours about why the families are so close.

In Episode Four, an unwelcome letter arrives which will again alter the course of these families' lives. Will the ties still bind them together?

Producer: Sally Chesworth
Sound: Richard Hannaford
Editor: Gail Champion
Exec Editor: Richard Knight.