Gareth and Sally, who came with us to Kenya this year, remained behind for a few more months. They were a real tonic on the visit – playing with the children and relating well to all they met; and bringing fresh eyes and thoughts to situations we came across. As this is being written we got an e-mail from them – Gareth writes:
My fiancée, Sally, and I are currently travelling around Africa for 6 months – in fact she was only my girlfriend when we left England, we got engaged last month! We had the privilege of spending 3 weeks with Karibuni Children in February this year, accompanying them on their annual pilgrimage to Kenya to visit all 14 projects they support. Whilst we knew a little of what the charity aims to do, these few weeks really gave us an insight into how much difference the charity makes to so many children in Kenya.
We found the trip very distressing at times – we visited families living in abject poverty where 7 people slept in a space no bigger than a cupboard under the stairs, not knowing from to day to day where their next meal was coming from. With help from Karibuni Children they are able to send their children to school where they are educated and fed. The experience we had with Karibuni was certainly difficult, having to see such poverty, but we loved every second of meeting the children the Charity supports and being able to see how happy they are to be given the opportunity of an education and a better future.
The thing that struck me most and the reason I am so happy to be able to raise some money for Karibuni is that every single penny donated to the Trust goes straight to the neediest people. Karibuni Trustees visit all their projects every year and ensure that the money is being spent in the best possible way – not always easy in Kenya – and I don’t believe that the charity could do any more to ensure this is the case.
As part of our African adventure, Sally and I will be attempting to climb Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania in June to try and raise some much needed funds for the charity. The more I read about Kili and the more I speak to people who have done it, I wish I had just decided to do a sponsored silence instead! So we would be really grateful for any to donations to help us get to the top!’ http://www.justgiving.com/Gareth-Mander
STOP PRESS! An e-mail has just arrived from Sally and Gareth – they have reached the top of Mount Kilimanjaro! Sally wrote:
‘You‘ll be pleased to know Gareth and I made it to the summit at about 7am on Sunday morning.(03 June) All I can say is that the last 7 hours to the summit were exhausting and something that I don’t think either of us want to repeat again in a rush! Sponsorship money is still coming in so hopefully we will hit target. We will of course keep plugging it.’