Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Final thoughts and IAA

Here are all the blog posts that I have written in relation to my Kenya trip so that anyone traveling over there won't miss anything!  Enjoy.

Countdown to Kenya Post
-Medications for Kenya
-What I am packing for Kenya-Snacks
-What I am bring to donate to the kids
-File Folder Games I brought to Kenya

While in Kenya

-Meet Jacob
-Day 1
-Day 2
-Day 3
-Day 4
-Day 5
-Day 6
-Day 7
-Day 8
-Day 9
-Day 10
-Day 11
-Traveling to and from Kenya

Final thoughts and IAA
I have been thinking how I can wrap up all my Kenya experiences in one post, but I don’t know that I can find the words!  It was a life changing trip and I feel like I got a lot out of it. Life in the USA is so different from life in Kenya.  I am sure if I go to other places outside my safety bubble of Houston, TX I will see that.  I am blessed to be an American, very, very blessed.  God made this great nation of ours blessed and most of us don’t realize it.  

I was taught to appreciate the things I have.  

Appreciate the variety in my daily choices.   I have a million options of where to shop for clothes or food.  I can watch tons of different channels on tv, I can surf the internet for hours.  Choices are everywhere here, but when you are on a very limited budget you don’t get the luxury of going to a huge grocery store and picking out what you want.  If you are from a nation like Kenya and don’t make tons of money you have your garden (if you are lucky) to eat from or the side of the road to shop from.

Appreciate that I have a say in my government.  I won’t be gunned down because I oppose the government and our judicial system.  In the US it is ok not to like the politics of the current leader (but you should still respect his position), but in Kenya it could be deadly to have an opposing view.

Appreciate that as a woman I have a voice in my community, whether I choose to or not.  Women throughout the world are property, just sold for 10 cows because they are of age.  In America I am free to choose my own husband, my own job, and where I live.  I can speak my mind and not be told to sit down because I am a woman.  I can do anything and be anyone that I choose to be.

Appreciate the fact that I have a wonderful job and make a good living.  The average middle class person makes $100 a month in Kenya and upper middle class makes $200.  I spend that much each month frivolously (trying to cut back though) on things I do not need, I cannot imagine living on that each month.
Appreciate the fact that I can see my family anytime I choose to.  I can hop in a car or plane at anytime and see them without having to beg for a ride or walk for two days to get to them.  I don’t have a job that keeps me stuck there for months until I save enough to get home.

Appreciate the fact that AIDS won’t wipe out an entire city (village) nearby.  AIDS is out of control throughout Africa and it is heartbreaking to hear the stories of little girls who have been raped by older men because they heard a rumor that if they have sex with a virgin then their AIDS will be cured.  Or another story that women believe that they can catch AIDS by cutting their husbands hair.  Rumors and mistruths run wild in Africa because they don’t have the education on how to prevent these diseases from spreading.
Appreciate the fact that I can turn on a faucet and drink from it without the threat of it being contaminated by Typhoid or another illness.  I can just go to the fridge and pull out a clean bottle of water and drink it.
Appreciate the fact that I don’t have to worry about my electricity going out at random times because electricity isn’t too reliable there (for the most part).  Even while we were shopping in a town the electricity went out at the power company! LOL.

Appreciate the fact that when I was a small child my parents were not killed by disease, government, another tribe, or each other.  There are orphans just living in the streets and in homes throughout Kenya that can be helped by places like Into Abba’sArms.  I also appreciate the fact that there are many US donors that donate to IAA to keep the children safe. 

Appreciate the fact that there are Americans like Jane who create children’s homes throughout the world to help the children of tomorrow.  These children will be the leaders of their countries one day in the not too distant future; do we want them to grow up educated, loved, and appreciated?  Or do we want them to grow up like they were thrown away and not cared for?  I want each child to know that they can have a better life, but until they are told that and shown the way, how will they understand?

I have learned more throughout my trip but these are the things I wanted to say the most. ^^^^That’s a lot of words! :)  I am very glad that I had the privilege to travel to Kenya for two week in April.  I am very honored to get to know the children and staff at Into Abba’s Arms and I hope to be able to go back soon and to bring many people with me to see what I saw. 


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