When I traveled to Ethiopia several years ago, I brought a suitcase full of medical and school supplies that were requested from an organization that I was going to be visiting. It was easy to transport and well received. When I started to plan my trip to Kenya/Tanzania, I was traveling “light” and knew I had the capacity to include another suitcase. I felt it would be a waste not to take advantage of bringing another suitcase full of supplies with me.
I was not personally involved with any organization in Kenya so I started to network and seek referrals for a reputable organization that would welcome a suitcase of supplies. I do not recall how I got to Rebecca Rothney from “Pack for a Purpose” but it was a magical connection. She put me In touch with Millicent Kimaita and the rest is history……Well, not really……after receiving a detailed list of needs, I went shopping, soliciting and collecting as many items as I thought I could fit into the large suitcase and not exceed the airline weight limits. It brought joy to me to pack each and every crayon, book, toothbrush, etc. I struggled with the immense need of items listed and my one measly suitcase. I questioned if I was really going to make a difference with what I was bringing…..I do understand that every little bit counts and I am committed to continuing to support Land & Life.
The story continues as my next hurdle was to actually get this suitcase to the office in Nairobi. I literally landed at midnight after traveling 24 hours from Colorado and was leaving at 7:00 am the next morning for the Mara. Millie was so accommodating and helped to coordinate for the suitcase to be picked up from the hotel I was staying at after I left that morning. I never met her face to face but that initial correspondence has developed into a deep connection and I actually consider her family now and I look forward to returning back to Nairobi after Covid so that she may personally give me a tour of the many projects Land & Life Foundation support.
Alissa West – Facebook