After a much-needed nights rest, the team were ready for their first full day in Muranga, bolstered by Freddy and Maureen, two young CWB-trained locals who help with the coaching and the translation to Swahili. The plan for the day was to visit 4 schools in the local area, coaching over 800 children.
With the team feeling fresh and sun-creamed up, we arrived at Mihango primary school which was the school one of our ambassadors, Mattias, went to school growing up. We were greeted by hundreds of excited kids who were waving, smiling and ready to see what we had to offer for them. The sessions ran well, and the children were very talented players and equally as good as knowing their ABC’s (the acronym we use to remind children how to protect from HIV; Abstain, Be faithful, and Condom).
The first session was a big learning curve for the team, with it being for most of us our first session coaching here in Kenya. Juggling 30 kids at a station while ensuring that each child has plenty of activity in the cricket skill and adequate HIV education (and how to connect the two). Then also how to react with the swarm of children wanting high fives and to stroke our hair, or indeed braid the men’s leg hair.
With our first experience under our belts we then embarked on our second session before lunch at Ndeera primary school, which was a bigger school and amounted to easily 60 kids in each group. With some fine bowling, batting and catching all being displayed, backed up by some excellent questions about HIV, the team finished the session somewhat exhausted. Here we learned that the proper welcome is “Jambo” and the proper reply is “Poa”, meaning “I’m fine”.
Fuelled up after some local cuisine and in good spirits following some wonderful music provided by myself, we moved onto Muranga College, which was in fact Maureen’s old school. A shorter session however equally as impressive as the morning groups, both team and children left with big smiles on their faces.
Finally, we moved on to our final coaching session of the day, an after school club at Makuyu primary school soaking up the late afternoon Kenyan sun, we continued to work hard providing energetic coaching sessions to match the joyful children who were keen to get involved.
Moment of the day was the conversation on the bus consisting between Sian and Maureen where Sian proposed the question of “What is Hello?” to which it was swiftly replied with “Some form of greeting.” This was closely followed by the discovery of Pork Island which has excited the team vastly with the slogan “Not Just Pork”.