Rain, rain, rain!

Thursday, June 4, 2009 — Weeks two and three: 24th March 2009 to 3rd April 2009. This time I returned to the village on my own. My priority was to organise a Harambee Meeting. This is a kind of community fundraising event introduced by the first Kenyan President, Jomo Kenyatta, immediately after independence to promote development through social responsibility [I’m told it has an almost legal status]. This sense of commitment to local development certainly seems to have rubbed off on the committee members who have been working hard in my absence. This is an excellent sign of the feeling of local project ownership that Teach A Man To Fish feels is vital for the success of the school. They have been busy conducting local market research to ascertain the selling prices of and the demand for the product we shall be offering. This will allow us to finish the projection figures for the businesses and decide which ones to begin with. A community meeting was arranged for the end of the week, which was the perfect opportunity for me to explain the role of Teach A Man To Fish to inquisitive locals. Everyone was extremely happy at the prospect of a girl’s school and very grateful for the work that the committee was putting in.

With the Harambee organized for the 17th April, it was vital that we began advertising for teachers and a director. The committee drafted together an advert and I left to go to nearby Awendo [near if you have the use of a motorbike for an hour] to get the adverts printed. Unfortunately when I got there the town was suffering from a very common power outage and I had to wait until late afternoon to be able to use a computer. Finally everything was printed and we set off to post the adverts at 25 pre-determined sights around Ondati. On the way home having put up the posters, the rain finally came. The rainy season was supposed to have begun three weeks previously and the persistent hot weather was in serious danger of ruining the crops which the local population rely so heavily on. The torrential downpour turned the road into a running river within minutes and we had to walk/swim the rest of the two miles home.

On Saturday, Ken and Leonard [the Odongo’s sons] asked me if I would like to go down to the river for a swim, which I was keener than Roy was to do. It was only when I got there, stripped down and ready to jump, that they told me to watch out for crocodiles!!

I didn’t swim in the river that afternoon.

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