Tuesday, June 19, 2007

joel is back!

I had to title this post in honor of our driver, Joel, who was gone from us for a while. His brother in-law passed away and he had to go take care of all the details. Deaths in the family are alot more complicated in Africa. Our fill in driver was great and called us his queens and all (I just decided not to think anything of it), but we just love Joel! When we got the phone call that he was coming back, it was like we were going to meet our favorite boy band or something. Needless to say, it is great to have him back!

Today, we visited a wonderful new place. It is called New Life Home. It is a home for abandoned babies. While most of them are HIV positive, they do accept HIV negative babies also. The coolest thing is that when they receive them they put them on a nutritional/medical diet and around 90% of the HIV positive babies turn out to be negative! It is just a wondeful place where these babies can receive the love and care that every newborn needs. It is also Christ centered, so these babies are learning that Jesus loves them! They keep all the babies together, no matter if they are positive or negative, and volunteers do not know their status as well. So as I got there, one of them latched on to me. He was quite the character. They were all so full of joy and wonderful fussy babies. We played outside with them for quite a while and then we went in and got to feed them. That was quite an experience. The little boy I fed apparently just loves to eat. So when we was through with his food and juice, he just screamed bloody murder. Then after they gave him more juice, as soon as he finished the last drop, there came the screaming again. It was actually quite amusing. Then after changing time, I was handed a full little baby girl. Well maybe a little too full because she decided to vomit all over my legs. It really didn't bother me because it definately wasn't the first time it has happened to me. I just laughed it off. It is amazing the full time dedication the staff and nurses at the place have. They give so much so these babies receive the nurture they need at an early age. We are hoping to go back one more time before we leave.

On Sunday, we ate lunch at Tony's house. He runs the center that we are working at. It was such a good conversation. He has such a vision and love for the BCC and the surrounding village and slum. It was also eye opening to talk to someone educated like himself about America and what the Africans believe. Africans are such trusting people. If you tell them something, almost 100% of the time they will believe it. Unfortunately, people have come to Africa, and even the governments of Africa, and take advantage of that and lead these people into lies. Tony began to tells us about this man who came and told them about a seminar he could do for a good price. It was about investing in the U.S. stock market. He claimed that money does grow on tree because American dollars grow on trees. It was obvious that this was a huge gimic to rip Tony off, but Tony didn't see that. That is only one example of many.

Also, Joel took us to the place today where you can view Kibera, the largest slum in the world. It was breath-taking, and not in an exactly good way. I took pictures, but they don't do justice to seeing it in person. It is just rows and rows and rows and rows of metal and scraps and dirt (in the air, you can't see the ground), and trash. Here is the shocker that not many people realize. People pay rent to live in the slums. It is like the suburbs of Africa. It is really hard to wrap your mind around.

well, I feel like I have so much more to tell but that will be all for now. I am probably missing you if you are reading this, so much much love from Nairobi!

peace and love.

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