We are two girls, Hanna and Tove. We are attending the last year of high school where we study the child care and recreation program. It was not a difficult decision to make to come to Kenya for our internship when that opportunity was presented. There was a lot to prepare before we left, like vaccinations and planning. Anyhow we both felt relaxed and calm for the travel, the only concern that we had was our English, but we decided that would not stop us to go.
We have now spent four weeks in Kenya where have volunteered for Dandelion Africa. The four weeks we had were absolutely amazing and it is definitely the best thing we have ever experienced. We have explored, experienced and learnt so much more than we ever thought we would do, and even the English has been going really well and we have improved a lot. We have stayed at Wendo and her family’s place, which has been really good, everyone has been taken so well care of us and been really nice and kind to us. The first week we spent quite a lot of time in the office to get to know the organization. For example we learned how their microcredit-program works, called table banking, we also had trainings about STI’s. The reason to why we were taught about STI’s was because it is a lot of differences between it here and in Sweden. There is not as good resources to access hospitals, and for example it is illegal to do an abortion in Kenya. There is also a lack of provision of condoms to have safe sex. This is combined with a poor economy for a lot of people in the country. The thought was that we were about to have trainings ourselves about STI’s for youth, but we were too busy with other work during our stay so that never happened.
During the second week at Dandelion Africa we got our own project which was to collect money to be able to buy underwear to the girls in school. Our goal for the project was to provide underwear for 500 girls. But we had to change that goal because it went so much better than we thought it would. So we could buy pens, erasers, folders, pen cases and two note books each to the girls in Dandelion Africa’s project Girls for Leaders. We had also brought balls and jumping ropes for the girls for Sweden that we gave them. To see that happiness and enjoyment in people that we did in the girls’ eyes was an amazing feeling and it makes you want to do things like that over and over again. With the same girls we have also had another project; to make bracelets. Those bracelets are right now on the way to Sweden where they will be sold with the profit going back to Dandelion Africa. One other really good and interesting thing we have had the opportunity to be a part of was the free clinics. The free clinic provides doctors, consultation, HIV-testing, family planning, antenatal, immunization and deworming. We think that this is truly amazing since a lot of people in marginalized areas do not have the opportunity for those services.
A part from working we have also been able to go for a safari, it was so beautiful. To go on a safari is something we highly recommend for other visitors. We have also been in town shopping, even though it ended with a bit too much.. 😉 One of the days we went to the equator where we met one the many great women groups.
To volunteer for Dandelion Africa is something we advise everyone to do who have the opportunity to do so. It has been four unforgettable weeks and we enjoyed every second of it. We have never before experienced that time fly so fast and take that as a sign that we had a wonderful time.
Hanna and Tove