They say life is like a journey, that it is like a ladder: one day you are down; sometimes at the middle; sometimes at the top. So what does really happen?
It is a cultural belief that, whatever happens in life, is actually a repeat of what happened to your previous generations. My grandmother could confirm this to me very vividly.
According to her, life is like a circle of events: it never changes but only perfects itself!
If only we could understand our problems, the sooner we would get to solve them. For instance, I believe the most people in Kibera are going through a vicious cycle of poverty, because they have not understood their life better. It is hard to be born in Kibera and then stay or live away from this place.
What do you think would happen to you if you were born in an area and you don’t know life outside it? If you find your dad smoking marijuana or fighting with your mum, what could your young mind be thinking of? Imagine you come out of school having eaten nothing and you find your parents quarelling over the bitterness of life. Think of waiting to write an examination whilst trying to leave all those problems from your family behind.
No one will tell a true story without having passed through the same experience, so life is the best teacher, it teaches you of the unforgotten. So what makes people around Kibera love their way of life? What is it that life is telling them?
In my own understanding, they don’t see another life outside, they believe they have to use flying toilets, put garbage close to their door steps, sell food and drinks in a stink smelling environment, allow their children to walk bare foot. Perhaps life has told them not to make an effort because they have lost hope in working because, even if they are willing to, there is no starting capital. In other words they don’t believe in themselves, they have given up in life.
They need information to change their value system. Imagine observing children following the footsteps of their parents? We cannot sit down and wait for the good minds to go to waste, this is unacceptable. I believe that in Kibera there are doctors, teachers, pilots, presidents, professors, lawyers, business executives…name them. We need to give direction to these young minds.
Just as the river meanders down the valley, so is our life. What makes it not negotiate the hard slopes? What if we kill the slope? Will the river be straight? So be it our lives! What if we solve the challenges of life with our people? Show them their weaknesses and let them negotiate the challenges in a more amicable manner? Then we we will be dealing with the vicious cycle of their living, this will actually be a credit not only to us but also to them.
Más Por Ellos, is working within this log frame, going a step further. Something that no other organization has gone through. Yes there are a lot of big NGOs around Kibera but not much change. A lot of money being used and not much impact.
Showing people the way forward by letting them solve their own problems, showing them life outside their normal way of living is the only way to go. A new way of doing good and big things for others, not by giving them handouts but by imparting skills to them. They say, if you want a man to eat a fish in his life time, show him how to fish.
Once Más Por Ellos always Más Por Ellos! 😉