Some of you know my sister is in Kenya with a group who is working to build a medical clinic in Kaugi Village outside of and up a mountain or two from Meru, just about on the equator.
The group stays at Meru County Hotel where they also get breakfast and dinner. Meals take 3 hours to get their food. I think it's because they go out and harvest the fruits and vegetables when they see the bus coming. ; ) They have a lot of spinach and fresh fruit. They are given bread and most have a supply of peanut butter to make a sandwich for their lunch. My sister wised up and took a banana from breakfast to put on her sandwich yesterday.
The medical team is there, working to see as many as they can while the building team builds.
I haven't known how lucky I was. Read on.
This photo shows how villagers power a single LED light in their living room at night.
I couldn't figure out how someone could live in such a rickety structure up in the air like this. I learned it's not a house. They are water towers.
In the process of trying to convert power from the generator to a power saw brought from the US, they burned up the saw and had to resort to using hand power to cut plywood to size to create the frame for the concrete footing .
When the rebar arrived, it had been folded in half. If you don't have a tool you need, you make one. So they used a stump that came out of the foundation hole to bend the rebar straight to be cut and welded into the framework.
Bucket Brigades have moved rock into the base of the foundation trench. And then moved it again when they needed more height but had no more rock so they had to refill underneath with that red clay. Then the Portland Cement arrived and they started mixing and bucketing the equivalent of 3 of our truckloads of concrete.
My sister got concrete in her eye as she set her bucket down. She tried to wash it out with her water bottle, and remembered she had added Propel to it. After a trip to the medical center where they rinsed it out with saline, she reports she's okay.
The group is far away from home, well, anywhere, really.
They are working to build a medical clinic in honor of Benjamin's mother.
She raised 7 educated children, and worked to helped other children in the village. When a mother was expecting, she would give a banana tree to her so the child would at least have bananas during hard times.
Benjamin has been to school here in the states, and his first job was working for the St. Pete Times--now the Tampa Bay Times.
This is Benjamin with his daughter.
The whole village met the bus the first day and everyone walked the rest of the way together.
If you would like to know more about this project, you can access their "Blog" at