The first day, there were 108 babies getting vaccines. I was able to help by giving the oral polio vaccine. The women were pretty shy around me, and laughed at my name. Actually, everyone here reacts to my name. Most, if not all, Kenyans have an English name, but Kimberly is foreign to them. The first reactions are a wide-eyed look and laughter. I have to repeat it multiple times for anyone to come close to getting it right. Alfred, who seems to run the clinics, or at least the vaccine portion, would tell the women my name was like Emily, only it was "Kemily." :)
|First day with Community Health|
|Richard and Claire, who's parents are working at the Hospital, helped to weigh babies|
|The women and children sitting outside eating lunch before walking home.|
|The building on the far left is where the clinic was the second day.|
|Women outside eating lunch and waiting to go inside for vaccines for their babies.|
The walls of the shack had many things written on them with chalk in English, such as the Fruit of the Spirit, and the phrase, "Jesus Cares."
While we were there a large group of school children came by on their way home from lunch. They were so timid to see wazungu (Swahili for "white people"), but they were fascinated. One of the other women visiting Tenwek, Esther, started talking to them and seeing how much English they knew. She asked if they could sing us a song. They didn't really seem to understand, but one of the women from the community understood and got them to sing this song for us. It was amazing.
It's pretty crazy to think about how poor most of these families really are. They didn't have much with them, and mostly had corn and tea for lunch. Esther asked me my impression of the poverty and I realized I hadn't even thought about it because everyone seemed so content and happy. It's crazy to think about how discontent I can be when I probably brought more clothes with me to Kenya than many people around me own.
The average yearly salary in Bomet is 25,000 Kenyan shillings, or roughly $285, all from farming, and is above Kenya's national average income. The most shocking thing about coming back from our safari was the immediate poverty all around us - two very extreme views of Kenya. The tourism for safari game drives is huge and so luxurious, while the people around the area comparatively, have nothing.
|The children are so excited to see their picture on Esther's camera!|
|This is Zipporah. She spoke English well and has a sister who lives with her family in Kentucky! She was so excited to find out I live there too.|