Saturday, April 11, 2015

A few days off....

The first group of PH volunteers loaded up early in the morning and were headed back to Nairobi, their work was done! Four of us stayed behind, we had signed up for both weeks of work on the island. Week 2 was the medical week, so Mame Fancett remained along with my husband Mac and Len (Leo Trey Fetch) Len had decided during the first week to extend and stay over to help, we were glad, he made us laugh, a lot!  
We slept in, but had also decided that we wanted to see more of the area. We had Mayor Mike make arrangements to get us a boat ride to the little island  you could see from Wayondo Beach Resort. We got to take our first piky piky rides! Piky pikys are motorcycles or dirtbikes used like taxi cabs on the island, you will see everything from 5 people on one to a cow, a couch, a goat, someone once saw a casket on the back of one! We hopped on them in pairs and headed to the resort to meet with the boat crew and go on a new adventure.  
Mayor Mike and Chris, one of the other young men who had been helping out that week joined us. There was another couple staying at the lodge that joined us for the ride. We had 2 row boats meet us. Mac, Len, Mayor Mike and I hopped in one while Mame , Chris and the other couple jumped into the second boat.  We headed out towards the island, about 15 minutes into the ride I noticed the boat taking on water, so we were given plastic buckets to empty water out with, the other boat had to do the same… the crew didn’t seem worried. When we got to the island we followed it around counter clock wise to the opposite side, noticing different kinds of birds along the way, about half way we started noticing pairs of eagles, lots of pairs of eagles! It was amazing! We stopped halfway so the crew could get breakfast.
Birds were everywhere 

A panoramic view off the front of our boat

There wasn’t much to see other than the boats that were anchored on the shore, the islanders probably had a bigger kick at looking at the strange white people.  The crew got something to eat while we visited and looked around.
We loaded back onto the boats and continued the rest of the way around the island. It must have been bath day that day, we got a chuckle out of the bare bottoms of the little kids we saw diving under the water and playing, while their mothers washed dishes at the shore. You read that correctly, they bathe, wash and consume water from the same source, Lake Victoria!  Clean water is on on-going problem on the island.  
 Taking a snack break on the island
Bath day!

Once we had made full circle around the island our guys decide that it would be fun if they rowed and raced the other boat back to shore, the original crew agreed and sat backed and rested laughing as our men rowed us home! It didn’t last too long and the crew took back over, not that Len and Mac were doing a poor job, matter of fact they were in the lead, I don’t think they wanted anyone on shore to see the white men rowing!  
Making it back to shore

Upon returning we got another set of Piky Pikys and took them around the entire perimeter of the island, it was neat seeing more than just the one road we had been on that week back and forth from Kibisom to the hotel. The island is small and even in the poverty that exists there, it is beautiful.
When we finished for the day we headed back to the hotel to prepare for the new group of volunteers that would be arriving late that night. I had to make room assignments, and because of the size of the group Len had to move to another compound down the road. 
We made the room assignments and placed their supplies in their rooms, and created a welcome sign for week 2. We packed Len up and journeyed over to the other hotel about 1/2 mile away to get him checked in, then came back for dinner.
Taking Len to his new home

Our artwork to help welcome week 2 and us goofing around

The group got in late that night, we didn’t really have time to meet any of them other than JW and Sarah Alexander, the other couple from San Angelo (our home), before heading to bed, tomorrow would be a busy day with new adventures!
Darren arriving with Week 2

Have you ever wanted to live outside the box? Do you have the desire to travel to Africa? Do you have  the drive to help those less fortunate than yourself?  If you said yes to 2 or more of these questions you should join Project Humanity on one of our upcoming trips! To volunteer with Project Humanity email me at  or go to our website and sign up for a trip, you won’t regret it!

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Multiple Gifts of Chickens and Goats

One of the programs that PH developed was people from the United States  donating money to buy goats and chickens for us to give recipients on the island. Goats were given to widows with the understanding that once they breed the goat they donate the newborn goat back to Kibisom so that they (the school)  can use the goat to help support the school. (A male goat was donated to another school to be used for breeding purposes) The chickens were given to the orphans from the Kibisom, as a result they can raise the chickens and sell their eggs to make money. The last day on the island, Week One gathered together with as many goats as we could find to buy for donations. Accumulation of all the goats paid for was a challenge as the election that was occurring while we were there created a shortage of livestock. I can’t remember how many we finally ended up with, but it was less than half of what we had money for. Teddy, our in country coordinator bought and delivered the rest the next month.

When we gathered it was quite the pomp and circumstance. Several of us took pictures with hand written thank you notes for those who had given us money to buy goats and chickens so they could see the fruit of their donations.

                                         The widows and their new goats
   Jeff and Rowens handing out the chickens
Nothing like posing with a goat

One of my contributors happens to operate a Chik-fil-a, so found a black and white goat to present. The women that received the goats were so excited and appreciative, it was really heart warming.

Watching the kids get their chicken was hilarious, the chickens were almost as big as some of the kids. They were so proud and happy with the gift and knew how much it would help.

It may seem funny to those of us that live comfortably in our brick homes with running water and we know where our next meal comes from, to think about the impact that a simple goat or chicken could have on a family.  To the recipient it means the world, it means food on the table, and money in their pockets.

When we were done handing out goats and chickens Mayor Mike and Chris entertained us with some dance moves, what a fun way to end a productive day.

If you would like to find out more about Project Humanity and all the programs that we have initiated to better the lives of the people of Africa, please go to

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

I met the Mayor of Rusinga Island, and now he calls me mom!

I met the mayor  Rusinga and I call him my Kenyan son. Okay he isn’t really the Mayor, but he knows everyone or someone that knows, does know who he doesn’t know. Did I lose you on that?  
His name is Michael Odiero, my husband started it by calling him Mayor Mike. He is very outgoing, nice looking and genuinely cares for the people of the island, has a wonderful laugh but most of al he is kind and loves God more than anything.  Mayor Mike first bonded with my husband, when they paired up to start some small farms (large gardens) at Kibisom. The idea behind the farms is that they will help sustain the school and feed the kids, what they can’t eat they can sell to help support the school. They, this being Mayor Mike, my husband Mac, and Jeff Jurgis, spent a day digging up soil so crops could be planted. Michael came to me at the end of the day and told me what a hard worker my husband is, like I needed to be told!  Mac and Jeff had impressed Mayor Mike with all their hard work in using a hoe and turning up the soil.  I guess some Kenyan’s feel that Americans don’t know what hard labor is, and I agree compared to their lives we don’t.  

   Buying Mike a new hoe

Mayor Mike does a lot of translating for us, the native language on the island is luo, not Swahili like most people think. Mayor Mike is a motivator, he motivated us and motivated the kids we were working with as well. He knows how to charm the women and how to get the little ones to behave. He made sure that we had all the supplies we needed or helped us obtain them. 
                                            Storing the seed PH bought to plant on the farms
                                         Cutting branches to make the fence for the farms
                                 Hanging out with Rowena and Tania and the kids

Mike has a desire to help better the people’s lives on the island and works at motivating them to do so.  It has heartwarming to see the passion he has for the people of Rusinga and for the work that PH does in the area. One thing for sure Project Humanity wouldn't be able to do the work that we do without our local contacts on the island and in country. 
I have stayed in contact with him since returning that  first trip, you will hear many more stories about Mayor Mike in future adventures of Purple Slip girl!
                                  Did I mention that Mayor Mike can DANCE!
                                                          Boy does he have moves!

If you have the desire to get involved and join in the work that PH does in rural Africa please go to and sign up for a trip and help spread the passion of PH!

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

And they deliver babies!!!

About 3 days before the end of our first week we headed over to the Tom Mboya clinic that we would be serving during the second week of our trip. We wanted to meet with the chief clinical officer and see what the facilities had in the way of staffing, buildings and supplies.

Tom Mboya Clinic

The waiting area and center part of the clinic

We were greeted by Solomon Majiwa, a very tall man with a sweet smile and a kind spirit. Solomon took us around and showed us the compound.  The facility is one long row of rooms with an open area in the middle where the patients check in to be seen and then sit on concrete or wooden benches until they are called to be treated.  We started on the far left side which was a 4-5 bed ward, and at that time had a few patients being treated for  malaria and end stage of AIDS. Next to it is another ward that was empty and  then some exam rooms and Solomon’s office. Towards the middle where the patients check in, the pharmacy is located.  Walking to the right from the “reception” area starts the women’s and children’s part of the facility. The first room is used for pediatrics, prenatal and postnatal checks. Did I hear him say prenatal checks?? My entire body perked up! Solomon informed us that they deliver babies at this facility! God revealed Himself big time, I knew why I was on this trip!! 
The next room was the lab and the last room is a  5 bed maternity ward, however only 3 of the beds had mattresses on them. A small room off the maternity ward contained 2 birthing beds, to my standards they are from the dark ages, but for them they are functional.  There is an even smaller room off of the delivery room that houses their autoclave for sterilizing instruments (when it works).

                                                Back part of pharmacy

                                               Dispensary area of pharmacy

                      Birthing beds, these do not come apart and they really don't adjust.

Solomon informed us they do about 15 deliveries a month at the facility. It didn’t matter is they did 2, I was in my area of specialty and it was a little piece of Kenyan Heaven! Bring on week 2!

                                 Solomon sporting a PH hat. He always has a smile on his face!

We finished up the visit by getting a list of popularly used items from the pharmacy so we could purchase more for our week in the clinic.  When we left the clinic Darren asked what I thought, and all I could think of was “They deliver babies, I got this!” Little did I know I got it and more that I had ever expected, God had a plan, and I didn’t even have a clue what it would lead to!

Do you feel that God is calling you to do medical mission work in rural countries? Do you put it off because you don’t feel you have what it takes to travel overseas and into strange places to serve the impoverished and uneducated. If you currently work or have worked in the medical field in any capacity and still have the ability to  provide those services, then Project Humanity NEEDS YOU!  Go to and look for upcoming medical trips, you won’t regret it and you will gain so much!