What a “home coming” to arrive at Nakuru late last week in the dark, to be greeted by so many hugs. Sven and I spent some time at Nakuru center five years ago and it is wonderful to see how the children who were there then have grown and thrived.
Life at Nakuru Center with almost 90 children attending a variety of schools is never dull! The children are up at 5am for their breakfast of porridge or tea and bread. Shoes are polished, books are gathered and they disperse in different directions to walk to school. For some that means a 45 minute walk. Kamama, our blind girl, is escorted to school by the matron. Our two youngest children have a little more relaxed morning as they start nursery school at 7.30am.
Quietness reigns at the Center! But there is much to do. The cook and cleaning mamas need to sort through the beans and maize that will be cooked for lunch, rooms cleaned and the clothes washed for the youngest children. This week we have been able to accomplish little maintenance and fix-up jobs around the center and put up new clothes lines.
Around 12.45, the children begin to arrive back at the center, running eagerly back from school for their lunch, which is eaten quickly before they return for the afternoon.
Evenings are full of laughter and play. At any time there may be a football game happening, children skipping, playing tag, sliding down the hill in the old bathtub or sliding down the driveway on plastic. The children are amazing at how easily they can entertain themselves with so little. Balls are made out of old socks stuffed with plastic rubbish!
Much laundry is done every evening after school, as their one school uniform is washed and hung to dry, ready for the next day. Dinner of ugali and kale is distributed to group leaders in a bowl, who in turn ensure that everyone in their group gets their food.
As darkness falls, the children head to their dormitories to do homework or study for forthcoming exams. Quietness reigns once more….until 5 am next morning.