- Rebecca J. Hopp
Yesterday, was my last full day in the Kakuma Refugee Camp and it was packed full of adventure, visits, donations, and learning!
Marti and I began our morning by visiting Madam Millicent at the Angelina Jolie Girls Boarding school. We shared with her the LTP curriculum, brought her a prayer flag for the school, and donated books to the girls for fun things to read. We hope that our LTP trained teachers will visit the school to do a project in the future.
Next stop was visiting students homes, we stopped at Kang's home and I met his sister and mother, but Kang was out playing. I was able to meet his little brother who has to be about 1.5- cutest cubby smiling boy I have ever seen. Kang took some photos of him, so I was so happy to shake his little hand in person. I was able to briefly meet the whole family and see their home. In general, I am happy to report, all though they are not American homes they are well kept and the families are happy. Their homes are what they make them, some are decorated, painted, there are wall hangings, or colored fabrics and so on. They may have a dirt floor but they do have mattresses and floor coverings and misquito nets. Their homes aren't air conditioned, but they aren't stifling either.
Our next stop was Safe Haven, this part of the camp is protected, people / families are placed here if they are endangered, are in the midst of abuse relationships, or even early marriages. We donated lots and lots of children's books to the sweet little kids here. Since its a protected area, I couldn't photograph their faces, so I photographed the books at their feet and also with the books covering their faces, such cute photos that I will share after I arrive home. I was able to read a story to the kids and they sang me a song! Sweet little angels!! :)
Our next stop was an artist studio, where I bought a painting of a teacher and students under an African tree. I sums up my trip here and I fell in love with it! We also found more fabric wraps to purchase, these will make good gifts. We also had lunch at Unity Hotel (which is not a hotel but cafe or restaurant) for delicious Ethiopian coffee and goat lunch. We then traveled to Kakuma 4 to see Patience, Marti's former student from her last visit. Patience is a beautiful young lady who has degenerate medical issues but has such a bright personality- Marti has made it possible for her to next year come to Houston for surgery to fix her legs and hips! I can't wait to bring her some treats in the hospital.
Our final activity for the day was LTP teacher training! I had 10 adults and most of my students show up, we did a brief training- normally its 6 hours, this was 1.5! But they are all very smart and will utilize the curriculum well. I can't wait to see what the adults do with the kids in their communities.
It was a great day.