On my trip to the Mara recently, i got to see around one of the surrounding Masai villages. A brief glimpse one morning isn’t going to give me any real insight into a culture that’s such a world away from my own experience. But here are a few things I learned from the visit, that you might find interesting:
The Dust of Africa
There’s apparently a proverb that says you can’t wash the dust of Africa off your feet. Looking at my laptop, I realise just how dusty a place Kenya is in October. My camera, my phone, my clothes, my shoes – everything seems to have developed a layer of grime that’s gradually getting permanently worn in.… Continue reading The Dust of Africa
A Journey with Camfed
And so, my three months with Camfed have come to an end. Back in January, everyone I met at Kiva HQ in San Francisco told me how fortunate I was to get the opportunity to work with ‘one of Kiva’s most impressive, and most loved, partners’. I now completely understand what they meant. The experience… Continue reading A Journey with Camfed
Will they pay back?
This is one of the most common questions I get, when I explain the concept of Kiva to people. And it’s an understandable response: isn’t lending money to individual borrowers, living in poverty thousands of miles away, enormously risky? How do you ever get the money back? If you look at the Kiva website, you… Continue reading Will they pay back?
Binga and the Batonga
My borrower visits in the past couple of weeks took me up to the northernmost regions of Zimbabwe, to the district of Binga, straddling the Zambezi River and the Zambian border. Binga is a six hour journey north of Bulawayo, a completely straight road with only one single junction (when you’ve got only one turn-off to… Continue reading Binga and the Batonga
Breaking the Thatched Ceiling
Over the past few weeks, I’ve come to realise the extent to which society in rural areas here in Zimbabwe, remains very patriarchal. Not just in the small rituals, such as men having pride of place on the kitchen bench whilst women stay on the floor, or the special bowl reserved for the (male) head… Continue reading Breaking the Thatched Ceiling
Communities in Action
One of the things that has struck me when I spend time in the rural districts with the Camfed team, is the extent of the impact that is being achieved when people from across different sections of a community come together, establishing strong networks and working in collaboration. I’ve been seeing this time and again,… Continue reading Communities in Action