I spoke to my mother today who said that it was one of the first "normal" days they have had in a long time. It was a great relief to attempt to have a conversation about things other than what is happening in Kenya. The last time we spoke was on Thursday. I called around midday having heard that riots had broken out after the killing of another MP from the opposition.
My folks had gone out to distribute food to a community past the airport and had to drive back straight through town where gangs of angry and violent youth had gone on a rampage again killing 10 more people in western Kenya alone. Fortunately, they had escorts from the community where they were distributing the bare necessities. I hate to think what could have happened if they did not have the escorts.
I am having a hard time understanding things anymore. Hatred drawn on tribal lines is growing stronger all the time. People are fleeing from persecution all over the country. The BBC ran a story about a women who had to leave Kisumu despite having a Luo husband and having living there for the past twenty years.
When we started collecting funds about a month ago, Ladies in Action bought food items in bulk
which has get the distributions going for a while. We have raised a total of almost £6000 and about half of it has been spent. So much has been done. Hundreds have not gone starving and over 30 people have been able to leave Kisumu who may have ended up dead just because they are from another tribe. I know my Dad was buying tickets for another group to leave.
One of the things we discussed to day was getting people back on their feet. The Ladies in Action have decided to give out a sack of groceries to individuals which the mamas can sell and start to earn for themselves. People need to get back on their own two feet as they lost so much during the earlier and worst part of the post election violence.
Personally, I think this is a great idea and it is only these sort of initiatives that would help bring the society back to at least being able to feed themselves. In the next few days, I will let you know exaclty how much has been spent and what is left that can be put to this idea. I just hope our politicians will give us the chance to start again...