2013: Bush Feeding
Waiting for Passengers, 2012
An important part of our visit each year has been the feeding programme. We prepare parcels of basic supplies such as cooking oil, flour, rice, soap, matches and so on, and bring them to some of the poor people living "in the bush". We also have some clothes, given by kind donors in Ireland, that we give out, matching the clothes to the people in the house. We generally work with a local pastor or councillor to select the families to visit. This year we concentrated on families involved with the Kitiiti and Bukunda women's co-operatives, delivering ten parcels in each area.
On the day we deliver, a fleet of motor-bike taxis, "boda bodas", picks us up and brings us around the various houses. This year there were only five of us, but in previous years we have had as many twelve or fifteen (last year, with 30 volunteers we did two separate trips) arriving down narrow tracks on as many boda bodas, which must be quite frightening for the younger children, who might never have seen a "muzungo" (foreigner, but generally used for "white person") before.
The houses we visit are sometimes built of brick, sometimes of mud, and are always small and often crowded. They are usually "in the bush", on small plots of land on the edges of fields of bananas, pineapples, beans or coffee. Circumstances for their poverty vary, but are often related to sickness - malaria and HIV/AIDS are rampant - and so inability to work or, in the case of women, abandonment by the father of their children.
Decorated boda boda
House in the Bush
Mud Hut
Round Mud Hut
Group with Pastor Fred