Friday, July 23, 2010

"A Last Visit to the Orphanage"

Monday, our last day in Kenya. We had thought we had some rough days throughout our adventure in Kenya, but didn’t realize how difficult the last day would be. The good-byes were going to be hard enough, but we never saw the experience at our last trip to Brydges Orphanage coming.

The kids there had prepared a show for us; they entertained us with their singing, dancing and skits. Being the oblivious Americans that we were, we didn’t get it at first, as we watched their presentations. This wasn’t just a play, this was their story.

In one skit, the young girl had lost her parents to AIDS. She was taken in by an uncle, who abused her. She ran away and lived on the streets, quickly meeting up with people who pretended to be her friends. Instead, they forced her into prostitution in exchange for a place to live and just enough food to keep her physically healthy. But where was her mental and emotional health. She was dying on the inside. A Christian social worker finally discovered her, cold and alone in the slums of Nairobi, and took her to Brydges.

The stories of the boys weren’t any better, finding only gangs, violence and drugs when there was no family to take them in.

Here, though, at the orphanage, the boys and girls were able to laugh and play. They looked forward to their futures with bright hope. Brydges was just beginning to establish a scholarship fund so that the kids graduating from high school would be able to go on to technical schools, learn a trade and never have to look back. But with the love surrounding them at Brydges, I am sure that was a part of their life they wouldn’t want to forget.

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