On Sunday 8th July, we set off to Kenya with Regenerate. Regenerate is a charity that helps teenagers get off the streets by getting them involved in charity work. At first I was nervous about going to Kenya when I was on my way to the airport because I had never been there before and I didn’t know what to expect. When we landed in Nairobi, we drove to a small town called Nakuru, it’s a 3-hour drive from Nairobi. As we drove into Nakuru there were people selling fruit on the side of the road and there were houses made out of rubbish lining the street. Kids were playing in the dirt outside their houses. Luckily the road had recently been tarmacked so the ride wasn’t too bumpy.
Driving into Nairobi was so different to Nakuru because it is the capital of Kenya so there was a lot of traffic and it was much more developed, with tall buildings and shopping malls. We helped out at a school in a slum. The school was run by 3 men who were brought up in the slum and they used to dream of having an education so when they grew up they saved up money to start a primary school where kids were able to work and have a meal for lunch. We did various jobs there such as cleaning, cooking and building new desks. The day before we arrived an old woman’s house had been burnt down so whilst we were in the slum we also helped build her a new house out of corrugated iron and wood. She was very grateful for our help. The adults and children who lived in the slum were very different to the adults and children from the orphanage because they weren’t used to visitors like everyone at the orphanage. The people in the slum just starred at you and didn’t smile and the kids were very invading, they pulled on your clothes and asked for money and food. I personally felt very uncomfortable in the slums and didn’t enjoy the atmosphere but I did like to help the locals. On the last day that we were helping at the school we played football against the locals and some children on a big piece of land by the end of the match there were about 150 locals watching us in amazement.
On Monday we flew from Nairobi back to London. It was an eye-opening experience for the entire group and I really enjoyed the trip. It was amazing to see the way people live in the slums/dumps and it also made me realise how lucky we are in the UK that we don’t have extreme poverty like in Kenya.
I am also very happy that I went because it has made me want to get involved in more charity work. It was completely different to watching one of the charity adverts on TV. There were times when I just wanted to go home and eat normal food but after I came back to England I felt like I had really accomplished something and helped lots. I obviously hadn’t put a stop to the world’s poverty but I had helped and made a small difference.
Blog Written by: Aysha Goodwin
2012 has been an amazing year for us at Rain Edge Kenya. One our greatest achievements is to have a home for the girls established and the doors officially opened in February; even before the completion of the facility. The girl's home has become a home for 37 girls who come from different backgrounds. We have girls rescued from the streets, from attempted Female genital mutilation (FGM), from arranged early marriages, the list goes on but most of the girls that have benefited have come from the dump site.
Meet Mary Wanjiru, one of the girls who has really benefited from our program.
Sometime in February, we visited the dump site Gioto and what a neighborhood I must say from houses whose walls were simply polythene bags to others that were made from sticks and card board paper.
Mary said to me, “Dad I don't want to go back to what I was. Please let me stay here, this is where I have learnt that there is more to life. I can now read and write, and am not afraid of my drunken dad and all his abuses."
Here are photos of us together...