If you don’t know that there is a famine in the Horn of Africa (Somalia, Kenya, Ethiopia) then you must be living under a rock and are not reading this blog. Anyway, most of the news has been focused on Somalia and their refugees fleeing into Kenya. The Dadaab refugee camp is now the third largest city in Kenya. Shocking statistics I know, yet this is not the full story.
There is a famine because of a drought and lack of food. This lack of food is causing food prices around the country to escalate at alarming rates and people are having to make some very hard decisions. Do I pay the school fees or
buy food? It is a decision that no parent should have to make and it is definitely a foreign one to most Westerners (school is free for most of us). It is not only those on the evening news who are being severely impacted by the famine. Here’s a news article that can help you understand.
So, in order to help people in our spheres of influence, DOVE Africa has been doing some relief distributions into some of the areas that are not in the media spotlight. Last Wednesday, I had the opportunity to accompany one of those distributions into some of the slums and poverty
stricken areas of Nairobi. We were able to deliver over half a ton of food (10 kg beans, 10 kg maize, 10 kg maize flour plus cooking fat and salt) to sixteen homes around the city.
Though we suffered a puncture, heard “how are you” and “Mzungu!” too many times tocount, we were able to see 15 families benefitted by the generosity of people in the West. Yes we can help relieve some of the immediate suffering, but there still remains the question, how do we prevent from having to go through this again 10 years? 5 years? 3 years? What are the long-term solutions? I admit I don’t have all the answers. Tree planting projects to help increase rainfall, borehole (well) projects help with irrigation, training of better farming techniques all have their place… Yet unless there is a heart transformation among people and government leaders all the behavior modification we try will ultimately fail.
We must learn to truly live by the axiom – do more for others than we do for self – if we truly want to learn how to live in harmony with each other and steward the world that our Creator has given to us to rule.