We have just returned from the most exciting trip to Tsavo, Kenya. Here the poverty level is so great that women and children walk 10-15 kms every day just to collect water to drink. Water taken from very dirty pools shared with livestock and wild animals.
After months of work and generous donations from our supporters, water has begun to flow on the site where we have begun to build the foundation our new women’s community centre. We are now able to pipe water to the huge water tanks we have placed on the property. As we turned on the taps for the first time, the wild expressions of joy and gratitude shown on the women’s faces moved me to tears. At last they have some access to safe drinking water for their families and a shorter distance to walk carrying their water containers home. This is just the beginning. The need is so great.
When the community centre is completed we are committed to helping the women and families in this community develop small businesses so they can become more sustainable. Although the women now have the first taps providing access to drinking water, they are still without direct access to water for their crops and household duties and basic cleanliness. Our aim is to raise further funds to drill boreholes to provide water on community land by local schools. We have to drill to at least 1,00ft/300 meters deep. Although the water, in most circumstances will be too rich in sulphates and fluoride for human consumption, it will be suitable for growing some crops and for household use.
My travel companions were a team of business people, Robin Fischette (a new US Global Angels Board member; Chairman of Go West Creative, and also one of our long term Corporate Angel Partners), Rhylie Weir (Global Marketing Director of CPhI – a new Corporate Angel), Stuart Brown (CEO and Film Maker, ITF Media) and Del Nadjafi (Camerman, ITF Media). We work closely with Camps International in this project, and Simon Englefield, who is Camp’s African Director, hosted our trip and manages the work on the ground. It’s very exciting to work with Simon and his team and of course Mama Mercy who leads the work to empower women in the area through her Tumaini Women’s Group.
We will be returning with another team of business executives in 2015 to help build a classroom and develop the work further.