Friday, 6 April 2018

Kenya - Day 5 Schools, Scouts and baby orphange

Revisiting a school to get some footage of activities in school at the start of the day was both interesting and sad. Asking the happy children to show us what their life is like so that we can promote them to our schools gave me a feeling of unease. Why do we need to show how bad a situation is, and yet how happy the children are to be in that situation in order to make a difference? What has happened to the western culture that requires us to see the worst in order to stand up and make a difference?

Next, we visited a Girls Secondary School. There are about 150 students in school now and the expectation is for another 80 to arrive in the next school year. What makes this a different place to the mixed school is it is already full of more coming and the head teacher is really a huge advocate of girls education. What we have found in the past and is also true today is that girls are really vulnerable. They can be lured away from school by some of the motorbike riders and into a life of early marriage or prostitution. The head teacher here was really clear about the needs and desires of the school and students and would even go into the community to find her students and find a way to get them back to school.

She had found a girl that had been given a phone by one of the riders and the concern was that she would end up running a debt that might only be paid by working as a prostitute to pay off the debt. This is the potential life of a girl in a secondary school in Kenya.

What was amazing though was talking to the girls about their plans after they have completed their exams and what their plans were. Journalism at Uni, Lawyer and an accountant were among the replies. Huge aspirations that would take time to complete their education but would empower them to a far more successful life then they might end up in.

After this, we visited a school that was run by the church in central Kitale. The paster had a dream about taking the children off the street and providing them with the 2 most important things for life. An academic education and morals in which to live by. His dream was that by educating without morals then it is difficult to change the fate of these street children. They may end up getting through school but end up back on the streets without the moral teaching of the church to help guide them away from a life of crime.

This school also hosted a scout troop. They have a similar setup in the UK with different ages in different stages of the scouting journey. I was entertained by the children firstly as students of the school and then as scouts. They did a beautiful parade complete with reciting of the promise and then I showed them a skill of making a keyring or a bracelet. This was the start of a partnership that I hope to continue for many years in the future.

The afternoon brought an amazing thunderstorm complete with hailstones and biblical rains. This must have lasted about an hour before we went to a local baby orphanage. This was run by a beautiful young lady from Chester that runs an orphanage of 22 children aged from 0 to 15 years. She has helped over 200 children in the 5 years that she has been running the center and their latest project is to create a preschool in the grounds for her children and those within the community. I can’t imagine a student from our school taking on a mission in a foreign country to look after children that have been left or abandoned by their parents. She is an inspiration to humanity about looking after yourself and fellow man that isn’t capable of looking after themselves

So why do people help others? This week I have met lots of different missionaries trying to do their bit to make other people’s lives better at the expense of their own. Why do some people help whilst others are content with egocentricity and not caring about others?

Being a teacher is rewarding in a way that we are providing an opportunity for others but seldom do we see the impact compared with these missionaries that are providing for mankind in any way shape or form. I am envious of the ability to give up a life to make a life in servitude of others. The selfless act of simply devoting a life for others is something isn’t easy for everyone to appreciate.

This week I have said “I am humbled to be here” and I wonder how many times have the Kenyans really heard those words and realised how heartfelt they are? People out here survive with next to nothing yet maintain a dream that life will reward them one day.

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