Wendy blog – Images of RUSH

It was difficult to get photos onto the blog whilst I was out there and even harder to choose a few out of the 420 I took! But here is a selection of them. The first set below are of my trip to Kakamega and my first experience of Africa! We flew in over Lake Victoria and landed at Kisumu airport to the south of Kakamega.

On Friday we went to visit the RUSH centre as they were preparing for the 10th anniversary celebrations on the Saturday. The women were practising their singing, mattresses and sewing machines were being delivered and the place was a hive of activity.

Saturday, up early to get ready for the big day! The place was buzzing all day with more and more people arriving during the day, including children from the academy being coached in. Each group did a presentation in front of the guests of honour who were the provincial director of social services and the provincial director of culture (as well as us the Mzungu’s!)

Then there was the graduation celebration of the Tailoring school and the giving out of the beds and mattresses to the widows – some of the widows didn’t want to get off them!

As guests we were “treated” to a local sweet which they called a flapjack – they were big flying ants (live!!!!!!) then crushed and mixed with sesame seeds. Not like any flapjack I’ve ever tasted.

Then off to Church on Sunday

During the week we went to a funeral, built a house, saw the carpentry, tailoring and IT schools, met with the RUSH women (now with a few men attached). I want to blog separately about a special family and the house we built for them as it deserves more than two lines!

One of the major tasks that we were looking at in the week was exploring “sponsoring a child” at the RUSH academy. We’re really excited by this prospect and it looks more and more feasible. The building work below was for the new dining hall which will be used for both the current academy and the new secondary school.

The land for the secondary school has now been acquired (paid for by Springfield) and all that needs to happen is for it to be built upon, teachers hired, science lab built and equipped, books bought, pupils found and of course funds to do it all!!!!

Have to say a massive thank-you to Andrew and Lucy, not only for looking after us so well and showing us everything that they do but also for their tireless and selfless commitment to those in need.


Full set of photos are on Flickr – you can see them here.


5 comments on “Wendy blog – Images of RUSH

  1. Rosie Edser
    October 20, 2011 at 11:59 am #

    Great pics! I’ve even been to flickr and looked at every single one.

    Love the colourful mattresses piled high and the different ways people were attempting to transport them home. Couldn’t believe the bed-on-back-of-a-bike… and of course the tinsel garlands for honoured guests.

    Fascinated by the house-building process. I don’t know how they manage with that tripod style step ladder without broken bones

    • nig
      October 20, 2011 at 3:18 pm #

      great set of photos. Rosie: the three legs ensure that the ladder is stable on uneven ground using the same principle as a milking stool

  2. Will Cookson
    October 20, 2011 at 3:33 pm #

    Sorry nig, I’m with Rosie on this one. I used one of those 3 leg ones and they are lethal! Fell off once or twice and it was a major surprise that I didn’t hurt myself badly. With a milking stool the legs don’t move, in this case they do and I think I only dared go up a couple of rungs on it – really not looking forward to using one again if I go out there.

    • nig
      October 21, 2011 at 7:16 am #

      Will, The principle is sound, the execution flawed. If you were to take the build quality of a good step ladder that you find in this countryand apply it to a Kakamega special, in theory you would end up with an effective tool for the situation. Unfortunately the cost would probably be prohibitive for potential users.
      Tripods are still the solution of choice for artists easels and cameras etc which are often faced with uneven surfaces.

      Now why does the thought of a long trail of white paint and someone falling off a ladder make me smile?

  3. Wendy
    October 20, 2011 at 3:55 pm #

    I can confirm that I spotted a long trail of white paint that Will left on the outside of one of the classrooms as he almost ‘fell off’ this ladder! Joking really!
    My concern (when building the house) was focused on the way they smashed in to the muddy ground in front of them with lethal blades and in bare feet – made me curl my toes up just watching, and made the ladder look quite safe!!
    If anyone is brave enough to have looked at all of the photos, I also have 169 video clips!! xx

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