Watoto Wote Wazuri

Other Needs: The Masai women,children, AIDS prevention and beyond

Posted in AIDS in Africa, Giving back by Lynn Ouellette on 01/15/2010

I just received a flurry of e-mails form LLoydie Zaiser, our Kenya Trip leader in response to my e-mails which had questions and updates about what has been happening with our trip preparations and projects. One of her e-mails was in response to my comments about donations and was the following:

“Lynn, this is the email I sent out to plead for clothing donations for the Masai children.  Check out the attached photos and see if you could resist giving.  Lloydie”

I have posted one of  the  photos below, it IS absolutely irresistable! The children are are Maasai preschool children (whose growth has been dramatically stunted by malnutrition).

Masai children

In further following the links of this e-mail, I learned that the plea was from ED Colina whose face was familier to me from the DVD about the Nyumbani programs where he has been a longtime volunteer (26 years), but that now he has founded a group of non-profit volunteer organizations including one called  “The Masai Women’s Empowerment Project (MWEP)” which is dedicated to improving the lives of the impoverished Merimbeti Masai women and children living in Athi River, Kenya. http://www.edcolinafoundation.org/foundation-projects.   He describes their mission as  providing meaningful interventions that respect cultural belief and historical experience, but still help to combat the incidence of hygiene-related disease, HIV/AIDS, child prostitution, pregnancy complications, hunger, poverty, and lack of education. I was struck by the how meaningful the mission is but also by the fact  that this yet another inspiring  example of the kind of  generosity and giving that one individual can generate,  so I wanted to post something about it along with that adorable picture. Since AIDs in Africa has become a female dominated disease, this foundation and its focus on women, AIDS awareness and prevention is crucial.

2 Responses

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  1. Katie said, on 01/29/2010 at 1:03 pm

    Are you going to work with the Masai Women’s Empowerment Project? What kind of prevention are they working on?


    • Lynn said, on 02/04/2010 at 3:03 pm

      We are not scheduled to work with this project though I would love to do that. I was in Kibera today and can tell you what I learned about prevention there. Given the context, I think they are doing a good job. It’s a huge uphill battle for many reasons.


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