Saturday, June 20, 2015

Step Into My World Saturday: Rural Kenya

It's time for another edition of Step Into My World! Today, we visit Kenya.

Compassion works all over the country, but does differentiate the regions into two categories: Urban and Rural. 

I write to four children in Kenya and all of them live in rural settings. My kids in this region are: 

Brian, Faith, Lazarus, Mulwa

Kenya is located on the east coast of Africa and borders on the Indian Ocean. Due to its placement, it spans across many different types of regions. Due to this, climate can vary widely. Inland, in the highlands, temperatures can be as low as 50 degrees F. Toward the coast, it is more common to experience temperatures in the 90's or above. When most people think of Africa, they picture hot climates, which is not always true. Africa is such a huge, diverse place. 

In rural Kenya, you will not see many buildings. The beautiful landscape, away from the big cities, is truly breathtaking. There are wide open spaces, green and golden colors, and cool lakes and rivers. It's also not unusual to see wild animals like elephants, giraffes, and zebras roaming freely in this area. However, due to these wide open spaces, children often have to walk for miles to reach school. These walks can be dangerous due to lack of clean water and dangerous animals. 

Homes in rural Kenya are typically small huts, built with found materials: sticks and mud walls, with thatched roofs. Families in rural Kenya, on average, consist of a father, mother, and 5-8 children. In is uncommon to find a family in this area with less than 5 children. 

In this rural region, there is rarely access to clean water. Water is collected from nearby water sources, that is polluted with many forms of bacteria. Women and girls usually spend hours a day walking to and from these water sources to bring back water for their families. 

Education is seen as extremely important by Kenyan parents and many strive to send their children to school. However, school is not free in Kenya and sometimes the cost of tuition, supplies, and uniforms is too much for a family to be able to afford. Schools in rural regions are often not large enough to meet demand and each teacher typically has 80 children assigned to their classroom. Classrooms are ill equipped and often made of un-sturdy materials. Compassion Kenya uses sponsor money to make sure that each child registered in Compassion is attending school and has all necessary supplies. 

Children attend their Compassion project a few days a week, usually after school. Here, they are taught to pray, are provided with healthy food, are given clean water, receive health care, and are given time to play with their friends. Compassion projects are seen as a safe-haven in these harsh, rural conditions and children love attending each session. 

One of the biggest issues in rural Kenya is drought. Rain only falls at specific times each year and then there are long periods of drought. Most adults in this area work as farmers and lack of rainfall makes it very hard to grow crops. This leads to a lack of food and many children are malnourished, only receiving quality meals at their Compassion projects. 

Can you please pray for adequate rainfall in these rural regions? 

I have two precious girls to share with you, who need sponsors. They both live in rural Kenya. In fact, the first girl, Lenah, attends the same project as my girl Faith. 

Lenah is an orphan who lives with her grandmother. At only 7 years old, she is responsible for many of the household chores; carrying water, caring for animals, and running errands. 

Meet Diramu. She is also 7 years old. Her parents both work as farmers, when conditions allow for work. Diramu likes playing group games with her friends. 

1 comment:

  1. We have some kids in rural Kenya also. I just love these posts!! The photos are great and really give such meaning to the text.