Today my heart was tugged in two ways...a day filled with both desperation and inspiration. In the morning, I did 3 home visits, led a goal setting workshop with the crew at IPI, and the afternoon was spent traveling to potential sites for IPI's next community home. The home visits look like connecting with families that IPI sponsors, checking in on their status, health, challenges, etc and finding out how IPI can better support. The families are eligible for support from IPI based on priority - children completely orphaned, orphaned and being cared for a by a grandparent, or living with 1 parent in a family that's been impacted by HIV. Because there are so many people who need support IPI had to define a criteria for who they wanted to help first.
The first family we visited today, were 4 orphaned kids whose parents died of HIV 6 and 8 years ago and have since been caring for each other and their farm. They grow maize and beans to feed themselves, and IPI supports them with funds for education. The second family we went to visit was a grandmother, who's caring for a 2 and 6 year old. She's in her 70's, her daughter and mother to the 2 kids died of HIV and was never married. The grandmother cares for the family farm with her other daughter, has no source of income and is also blind. IPI is supporting with funding the eldest childs education. The last family we connected with today was a single mom, who discovered she was infected with HIV when she read her husbands death certificate. She is raising a 5 year old boy on her own and feeds her family from a small plot of land she inherited from her late husband. Devastating - many families are impacted with by HIV, and 80% of all new cases in kenya are married couples where the husband is contracting the virus then bringing it home and infecting the wife. nspiring - grass roots organizations putting their money to areas where the impact can be huge and long lasting... education.
Most of the time when you think you are 'serving', you are actually the one being served. but today, I was able to serve through sharing goal setting with the IPI team - why people do or don't set goals, how it can impact your life, and how to do it. It sparked inspirational conversations for us all and was good development for a team that's focus is 100% focused on developing, aiding and empowering others. i felt super lucky to be able to share this with this team.This afternoon we visited a site for one of IPI's next community homes - we have plans to build 5 homes total. we were stoked to learn today that the local community has decided to donate a beautiful chunk of land to the cause. we'll be able to build most of the home from the earth, the land is fertile so there will be plenty of space to build an amazing bio-intensive garden, and the view of mount Kenya beautiful.
All in a days work.....amani