At the start of their second week in Kenya, the visiting Baylor University students continued to be a blessing by initiating a community project that seeks to cement out jiggers from a small village in Murang’a district. After a fruitful first week of sports competition in friendly matches and visiting the underprivileged and the destitute kids in Nairobi, it was time for the sportsmen and women to head out of the city to a nearby village in Murang’a called Kangari.
Kangari is known for the high density of the jigger infestation with the area residents hugely affected by the small flea-like bugs called jiggers that burrow into the skin of the villagers causing a painful infection and sometimes leading to the loss of toes and fingers.
Last year, the Baylor Sports Ministry team accompanied former MISS Kenya Cecilia Mwangi and -AHADI KENYA TRUST - the team that has been championing the fight against Jiggers in Kenya to wash the feet of the jigger infested people in the same region but they sought to offer a more permanent solution this year.
“This year we were able to execute a more permanent solution by bringing shoes to the family and making a floor that will expose the family less to the jiggers than their previous dirt floors comfortable for jiggers habitation. Although we weren’t able to help the whole village, we hope that by initiating a lasting solution to the problem it will open doors for future help.” Said Bryan Swindle.
The team helped in putting a concrete floor to a two roomed house belonging to a mentally retarded family: Paul Mugo Mathu, Nancy Wanjiru, Gladys Njoki and Isaac Mugo who lost both their parents and are engulfed in abject poverty not to mention the fact that they are neglected. The sight of the over 50 guests in their home brought tears of joy and disbelief to their elder sister Gladys Njoki who is the sane of the four and the sole caretaker after the demise of their parents.
With the Mobilization from the area pastor Moses Maina of Mairi Baptist church, the area residents joyfully joined in bringing back happiness in the solitude family by laying up a solid concrete floor for the family with the area residents and leaders present promising to own the project and continue flooring more houses through their churches.
“We have learned a lot from this visit by our guests: Brotherhood does not mean the people I know or those close to my heart. True Christianity means actions and our brothers have opened up the doors for more to come and we appreciate them greatly. May God bless them abundantly.” Said Maina.
Later the group was split up into two with the second visiting nearby school –Mairi Primary school –where they shared and had fun with the kids most of whom have never seen a mzungu before (Mzungu is Swahili word for white person).Some of the girls were also shown how to pluck tea from the green fields and they had a lot of fun in the fields.
Murang’a County is the hilly landscape and the huge farmlands that extend to the west stretching miles. Commercial and subsistence farming is part of the activities in the area with coffee and tea being the main grown cash crop in the region.
In addition, Murang’a County has a lot to offer in terms of tourism. Its steep hills provide a perfect setup for hiking and biking while the Aberdare Mountains; conveniently accessible from Murang’a town offer scenic views for nature lovers.
Murang'a County is located in central province of Kenya and is predominantly occupied by the Agikuyu community. This extensive county is host to seven constituencies namely Kigumo, Kangema, Kandara, Kiharu, Gatanga, Mathioya and Maragua. Also known as Fort Hall, Muranga lies on Latitude. 0.7166667°, Longitude. 37.15° and enjoys favorable climate throughout the year with temperatures ranging from 22°C although it can get colder in the months between May and August
Bird watching and wildlife are also plenty in the Aberdares. Tour operators and team building companies here offer competitive tour packages to places of interest. As such, Murang’a town is a fast growing business hub attracting investors and industry players in banking, retail, tourism, real estate among others.
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