Travelling to Kenya
June 20, 2012
Filed under World Issues
This April, three Frank Hurt grade 12 students went to Kenya to build a school with the organization Me to We. Me to We describe themselves as an organization that “transforms people into world changers, one action and experience at a time.” Me to We creates opportunities for youth to take action to improve the global community by building schools, providing clean water and creating a source of income for families. Kailie Malmberg, Tylynn Frycz, and I went with a previous Frank Hurt graduate, Jessica O’Mara, and between April 5 to 15 we spent our time digging trenches for the school, going on safaris, doing water walks with the locals, and engaging in daily discussions with local residents.
Soon after our arrival in Nairobi we headed to our home for the week in Bogani, near the Maasai Mara. We spotted monkeys, goats, mongooses and many tropical birds casually walking through our camp. Over the next few days our group was given Swahili lessons from our tour guide, Phillip. We spent a day looking at elementary schools and comparing the old schools (built prior to Me to We) to the new schools that Me to We helped create. Later in the week we spent a day with the older women in the communities, whom we knew as mamas. The mamas showed us around their community and the progress they made throughout the years with the help of outside funds. We were then asked to help bring water back from the river to help water the mamas kale garden. We carried large empty jugs that held 40 liters of water down the crooked unpaved path down to the river. The jugs were filled, and we had a rope placed on our heads with the jug on our backs. We carried the heavy jugs full of brown water back up from where we came from with a lot of struggle. It was hard to believe that the local mamas have to do this up to 7 times a day with their children on their backs in the blazing sun.
For three days on our trip we went to pickaxe and shovel away trenches for the base of a new dorm for female students. We spent hours and hours pickaxing away and shovelling dirt in order to increase the number of students that could attend school. Though this was a very difficult task for all participants, we all agreed it was one of the highlights of the trip. We left a positive mark in Kenya that will forever be appreciated.
If you feel that you want to go on a trip like this to Kenya, or even India, China, Ecuador, Nicaragua, or Mexico-Arizona, go to http://www.metowe.com/trips for more information on how to get started. The trip to Kenya for 10 days came to about $4,500; though it sounds like a lot, all members on the trip decided that it was worth every penny to be involved with a community that is in so much need. However if travelling isn’t something you’re interested in, there are many other ways to make a difference around the world. Visit http://www.freethechildren.com/donate/gifts/ for goals. Create a fundraiser for the school to collectively earn $1,000 to hire a teacher for a school in a needy country, or save up your birthday money to provide clean water for an entire family for $100. How cool would it be to say “hey, there’s a goat in India that I bought to help financially support a family”?