Paul went out to Kenya for one week in February. Here is an update on our work in Kanamai.
Because of the political situation, there are still very few tourists going to Kenya and, of course, this continues to have an adverse effect on the poorer folk who rely on tourism for their daily bread. So life is hard. Hotels are closing – the one we used to stay in is one of them, and Paul now stays in a hotel which is owned by the University, so its guests are normally those attending conferences. For most of the week he was there, Paul was the only guest!
This also means that the cost of living has gone up, and the price of food has increased substantially. This affects the work at the school particularly, but we are able at present to continue to give the children porridge for breakfast, and a lunch. The children living in the dormitory also have an evening meal.
As well as carrying out sessions at the clinic Paul was able to look around the area, and the need for toilets in some of the villages is still of paramount importance. We have just sent out money to begin to build a block in Taliban village (I would add this is nothing to do with the terrorist organisation, of the same name). We hope that we can get them completed before the ‘rains’ come in April.
We have had to renew both the pipework and the electric wiring to the water pump at the school, and another classroom has just been finished. Our original staff room has had to be used as another classroom, and the teachers are asking if we could build them a staff room. At present funds do not allow us to do this, as we are committed to finishing the toilets in Taliban, but we have added it to `the list`! I think we could probably build the staff room for £2,000. Until then, the teachers are in the open air and at the mercy of the elements.
This week we have been told that 4 children at the school have gone down with cholera, and of course we are dealing with that. Malaria is still a constant problem: not in the dormitory, as we have mosquito nets around all the beds, but in their own homes.
Before Paul went out, we were sent confirmation that he has been appointed Adjunct Professor at Pwani University in Kilifi. Sounds good, but we wait to see what that means in reality!
Back here, Pearl visits schools and other organisations to promote the work of the Trust, and deals with the day to day running of the Trust. She is also on the end of a phone for all the problems which arise in Kenya.
Because of the instability, it is now a year since she has been to Kenya, and for the time being, at least, she will stay here, where she has plenty to do! Fortunately the work she does is not dependent on her actually being there, though she does miss her contacts with the children, and without a doubt being there ‘in the flesh’ does get things done. Paul is going out again in April.
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