Thursday, March 3, 2011

Unforgettable visits

Thursday, March 3rd will be marked as a day to remember, a day to remember for only one thing … spreading love and happiness. Yes, this is what exactly each one of us went through. It was a day filled with emotions, expressions, gestures and above all … hugs n smiles all around.

DOT and CSC Kenya Team 2 planned out March 3rd and March 4th as part of Community Days. The entire crew gathered at the reception of our hotel to head over for our first visit to Allamano Special School. Pencils, erasers, pens, chocolates, candies, footballs and other gifts were all collected and packed into our cars. After a twenty minute drive out of Nyeri, we made into Allamano Special School where we were graciously greeted by school staff.

We visited a local school called Allamano Special School. This school was home for several mentally disabled children. Our team had spent  a lot of time in our respective countries collecting gifts and valuables for this visit. Francesco from Italy even had a Lenovo Thinkpad for donation to school staff whereas Luan from Switzerland promised to hand over a digital camera. It was pleasing to see how each member contributed in his/her way for this day.

It was an extremely heart-warming start to the day; we were welcomed by the children with open-arms at school’s field house. You can very well note the expressions running on their faces … these expressions said it all. It was a special moment where all of us mingled with the children who seemed to have been fascinated by our presence. Some of us played soccer, some of us volleyball and some of us just took their pictures and shared them back. Our cameras gathered much attention; all seemed so amused by these tiny gadgets. How rapidly their facial expression changed into wide smiles and then into laughter on seeing their pictures was just something special to see J

Before departing we were presented an entertainment show by the children where every child danced and sang for our team. Not only that but even a welcome poem was read out for our team. Seeing such a performance by the children, IBMers weren’t going to sit quietly, the team had its own train dance presented to the children where they all seemed to have thoroughly enjoyed.

Francesco then on behalf of the CSC team took the lead in handing out the various gifts to the school staff. It was a lovely moment.

Our next stop for the day was to be the Mweiga orphanage. The children at the orphanage welcomed us with a touch of local flavor. We could hear Jambo Bwana being chanted loud and clear as our cars approached the gates. Jambo Bwana is a very popular hip-hop song in Kenya. It’s a Swahili word which means “Welcome”.

The children seemed to have been patiently waiting for us to get involved and talk to them. As pictures speak a thousand words, the following pictures will display how our team spent the rest of the day mingling with the children.

Anna smiling away with the children

Reka busy showing pictures on her digital camera

Dave engaging the children with his skills

Eva getting the local touch .. getting her hair braided :)

Anna sharing the poloroid snaps

Luan posing with her new friend

Myself with the two dancing stars

Bill appreciating the completed poster

The children then took the stage in showcasing their dancing talents. Yep, they had specially prepared a dance performance for us. It was a splendid performance. Reka who is a trained dancer didn’t disappoint the children in sharing some of her dance steps. It was a picture perfect moment where everyone seemed to have thoroughly enjoyed the show.

It was soon time to say good-bye to everyone at the orphanage. It was a great feeling to notice how even tiny gestures can make an impact, I was extremely fortunate and lucky to be amongst and sharing such splendid time with all the children today :)

1 comment:

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