Let’s not hide the fact that this isn’t my first rodeo, there isn’t too much in Africa that surprises me. Today however questioned my beliefs in why we do what we do for Cricket Without Boundaries.
We started the day at Ndera, a school I had visited on my last visit to kenya. I was greeted by teachers who remembered me from before which is always something that warms the soul.
Things however began to turn at Huhoini school following a conversation with several of the teachers. The teachers were telling be about how they don’t promote the Condom message too much but rather focus on the Abstain and Be Faithful part of the message. Obviously this started raise the temperature of the blood in my veins, I just couldn’t sit back and let this go unquestioned. Let’s also be clear, this wasn’t a catholic school, if it was I could understand their reluctance but the fact of it was, this was a non-religious school. There it was, my faith in what we do was questioned. If we can’t even get non-religious schools to promote the use of condoms, what’s the point? The teachers explained that due to the very catholic beliefs within the community they felt under pressure to not unsettle them. However much I hated what they were saying, I could understand why they took that decision. It’s easy to forget the community pressures that the teachers could come under from the topics they discuss at school.
Then it hit me, one of the big parts of what we do is to talk about the things that the teachers feel too scared about. We come to Africa as these alien Mzungu not just to break down the myths but to talk about the things others can’t. I sit here writing this finding it refreshing that even now my eyes are being opened to why I keep coming back. Obvious to say that during the wrap up at Huhoini school I shouted CONDOM! louder than ever before.
*Update* So this morning we had our Muranga festival and Doctor Luke was on hand to talk all things HIV testing. A girl by the name of Felicity was first to come forward to get tested. Unfortunately because she was only 10 years old the doctor didn’t feel comfortable testing her without a guardian present in case a positive result came back. What an amazing sight though, to see a girl of just 10 years old in front of teammates who were older than her, step up first to get tested.
Faith fully restored.