Posting by Nyla
Hello Friends of Mama Hope,
Last year I was brought to Pepo La Tumaini through a Safari center called Wilderness Trails who brings their guests here to understand the struggles and triumphs of the local people as part of their “Wilderness” program. Since it is tourist season many groups of tourists in safari vehicles have come here. They all come here fresh off the game trails in their shorts and big hats, cameras around their necks. They walk through here as if on a museum tour looking at the people as if they are in displays marked,“Orphans”, “AIDS Patients”, and “Malnourished Man”. I understand and sympathize with these feelings because I was once on this tour myself and its hard not to see things this way if you are just passing through. We get so desensitized by images of the devastation happening in Africa that even when it is in our faces we still tend to numb ourselves to it.
When I saw a safari vehicle roll up for the third time I asked if I could go around with the tourists and show them the health clinic being built and show them what is possible when you let an experience change you. I tried to stress to them that these people are simply in this type of poverty because they do not have access to the resources that we do. The best way to do our part to help people in need is to directly support their community based efforts by working in partnership with them to meet their goals on their terms.
As they were leaving one of the men told me that his daughter had come up to him after seeing the future health clinic and said “Dad, she really does not have anything to gain from building this clinic she is simply helping because she can!” I’m glad that they left with the feeling of what is possible when you do what you can. Doing what you can is such a simple concept that some times we forget when we focus on all that we can’t do. Hopefully she will go back to her home and do what she can!
I know that obviously we can’t solve all the world’s problems but if we all did what we could, we’d be a lot closer.
Until next time,