Today I want to celebrate the people of Nairobi, and all the things they are doing, accomplishing, and changing.
Is there poverty in Africa? Of course there is.
Do people struggle here? Is it hard to find a job or feed their families? Yes, I believe for many of them it is a challenge.
Do children get sick? Sadly yes, that’s an all to well known reality here.
Do the Moms and Dads here want to work? Absolutely
Do they want to provide for their families and take care of one another? Yes, they truly do, and they are doing that in so many ways already!
Are they making the best out of the situation they are in? I can confidently say yes. And I honestly believe they are doing much more with their situation than most of us could ever think to do if we found ourselves in a similar situation.
These women wake up early every morning, prepare their children the food that they have available, they send the children to school or day care or where ever they need to go and they head out to work, or to try to find work, or whatever their individual situation calls for. They work hard to make sure that their children can receive an education, so that their children can be guaranteed a job and a future in a way that many of them were not as a child. For Dads and men that are around, they are working and doing what they can to provide and care for their loved ones, and that extends far beyond just their wife and children. It includes brothers and sisters, parents, nieces and nephews. And to those that have jobs, they are the most dedicated, hard working people I’ve ever met, and they do everything they can to make sure they earn the wage they get paid.
I look at where some of these people are in their lives, how many people are now educated, in school, growing, adapting, improving, and I’m blown away!
I’m so impressed with how many children show up at school and their mothers have sent them with Mandazi’s (Deep friend dough) to eat with their morning snack at school. As I get to learn about these kids and their families, I’m so happy to hear how many of them come from homes where the parents are married and happily have started a family together, where at least one if not both parents have jobs. How many parents are happy and proud to be able to pay for as much of their children’s education as possible, or pitch in to buy a new uniform or new shoes. These people truly desire to have a better future for themselves, their children, and for their country and home as a whole. And you can see that they are no longer waiting for a hand out or an easy way out, they are truly working hard for the improvements and the changes they wish to see!
Here’s some numbers for you to mull over and keep in mind..
The total area of Saskatchewan is roughly 250,000 square miles.
Kenya’s total area is roughly 225,000 square miles.
The total population of Saskatchewan in 2014 was 1.3 million people.
Even better, the total population of Canada in 2013 was 35.16 million people.
Kenya’s total population in 2013 was 44.35 million people.
Just let that sink in for a minute…
How many of us can honestly say we’d be striving for excellence, improving, working as hard as possible despite the obstacles, in the situation these Kenyans are in, and succeeding. Changing, growing, providing for themselves and their families. I honestly can’t believe or imagine being in the kind of situations these people are in and make the improvements and achieving the things they have. I have nothing but admiration and awe for these people. While I feel like I’m here to help these people, teach them and spend time with them, I feel like they have taught me and shown me so much more than I could ever hope or imagine to share with them and I’m daily, I’m thankful and blown away for this experience.