Thank you.

Good evening. 😊

Ah, you thought that you had heard the last from me? Well I am here to say that you have not, muhaha! I have been back in England for an entire week now, and before life gets too hectic, I just wanted to take a moment to say one last, big, GIANT thank you.

Being a part of CM4K has truly been one of the most amazing, life changing experiences that I will forever cherish. This project is phenomenal for so many reasons, and one of those reasons for me has been meeting you all. If this project did not exist, I would have never had the chance to know you, and that thought makes me incredibly sad. Each and every one of you are wonderful, and I see only good things in your futures. I am excited to carry on following the progression of CM4K, to watch it grow, develop, and I hope to be there at the grand opening of the Radio Station – I don’t want to miss it for the world! We have contributed to something amazing, never forget that. Your hard work will never be forgotten.

So once again, thank you all. I hope that I do not have to wait as long as I have to meet you all again. This isn’t goodbye, it’s see you soon!

Luca. 😊

Last day of editing…

Finally the last day of editing has come! As much as I love editing videos it was becoming very stressful for me as I felt very anxious about the amount of work load there was to do. I am an awful person to handle stress, especially large work loads when it is meant to be group contributions.

I found this day particularly useful as I was able to complete all the editing I was meant to do. I found this day particularly tiring as I woke up in a can’t be bothered mood and wanted to get my energy back by staying in bed, all the field work and early mornings had caught up with me. I woke up with stomach pains which later left me and because of it I was considering staying at the Pastoral Centre to sleep off the pain and exhaustion. I knew how important the work we were doing was and how it had to be finished by Wednesday, and the the editing I had to do I didn’t want to pass on to anyone else. With all this I was pretty moody that day… sorry guys!

As usual the weather was hot and I wanted nothing more but to stay outside and soak up the son and forget about the work load. Sitting in the hot classroom I was becoming agitated with my work and I knew how important all this was. In all truthfulness I was being short tempered and I had to keep to myself after lunch and say very little and just focus on my work, which thankfully I was able to complete before the day was over.

Last day in Cham gi Wadu

It was our final day of being out in the community of Cham gi Wadu. Being in the group where we capture establishing shots, our first place of visit was Kanyimach Primary School. Knowing the task in hand I set my group off to gather all vignettes and establishing shots. Visiting schools is always my favourite part of fieldwork, because not only do I have a lot of fun gathering establishing shots but also because the students we visit are always so excited to our presence. It is nice seeing almost everyday what our handwork is going towards and how beneficial our work will be in the future for the people of Cham gi Wadu.

As usual the children surrounded our camera and wanted to be photographed, it’s always nice to see this cooperation from them as it makes the final videos recorded worth it to edit and put together in a final cut. The second place we visited was Kanyimach Mixed Secondary School. Once again here my group and I went off and gathered all the necessary establishing shots we needed. And we visited Kanyimach S.D.A. Church. My favourite place to film was definitely Kogneya Shopping Centre where I got to explore and film the different shops and produces the market offers for the cpmmunity. The was a butcher, hairdressers, shoe repair, shops to buy fizzy drinks, motorbike repair garage. All in all, today was a successful shoot particularly for my group as we collected a lot to make a successful vignette and got our group task completed very quickly. All that is left is to edit what we have gathered from today on Tuesday.

Salon day!

I anticipated and waited patiently for this day as it was the day Hafsah and Katie were getting their hair braided. We did our usual routine of going for breakfast which we were met with sausages and as usual the dogs from the campus were our morning conversation and if there would be a sausage left so Luca can feed the dogs.

Mama Isabelle took myself, Hafsah, Katie, Lydia, Fiona and her 2 girls and baby Isaac to the hairdressers. Having all of us girls together cracking jokes and just being away from the boys we could be girls. The braids turned out amazing for Hafsah and Katie, and we gave Katie a new name for the day; Shenice, with 4 mixed raced babies. I loved spending time with the girls as our crazy personalities entertained the hairdressers to distract them from the tedious time they were spending doing hair.

We returned to the Treat House to meet the boys and there we feasted on a meal of chips, omelette, sausage, beef and samosas. Chips was very much needed that day as were all craving a familiar food from home.

Us girls spent the rest of our time seated on the grass doing catwalks we entertained each other until we were in stitches from laughter. Thinking the day couldn’t get more eventful and hilarious, a fight broke out between a married man and his wife, who had discovered her husband was at the Treat House with his girlfriend. This was such a thrilling event for us girls, especially Mama Isabelle who knew the married man and sent me and Halima off to watch the show go down.

The conflict sent us girls in fits of laughter and comparing it to the television show Love & Hip Hop, and what would us girls do in both women’s situation. It definitely got us girls excited for hours as it was hilarious watching how everyone in the resort ran to watch the fight and seeing the crowd from the public gather. Mama Isabelle wanted it captured on her phone to tell her friends, she was very quick to call her friend and update them on the event. And when we returned to campus for dinner she had already told all the women staff in the kitchen who laughed and laughed.

Lake Simbi

Today we went to Lake Simbi. The journey was as usual with lots of laughter and picking on one another to distract ourselves from the hot bus we are always travelling in. The journey was about and hour and half and I was greatly anticipating to arrive at Lake Simbi, as I really loved Rusinga Island and couldn’t wait to see another beautiful place in Kenya. On our journey e drove through the political rally which had attracted a large crowd, the reason for this rally was held by the NASA coalition which is headed by Raila Odinga who is an opposition leader, against the Jubilee Party.

It was amazing to see everyones passion for the political rally as they were shouting in the streets to our bus to the Kenyan students who also supported the politician and they were supporting someone who wanted to make a good change for Kenya and its people.

Arriving to Lake Simbi your eyes were met with the most amazing lake, it was large as expected with blue water covering the mass of it. The circumference of the lake was unimaginable and my first thought I had was, theres no way I am walking around that lake as it’ll take days, lool. Funny enough, whilst standing beside the lake I witnessed a woman walk the entire area of the lake and I totally praised her, being she wasn’t a young woman and she walked at a slow pace she waled the entire area. When I asked why she was walking the area, I was told that it was common thing to do. The lady walks the entire edge of Lake Simbi, and once she’s completed the walk she then collects the water and takes it to her church, where they use it for healing purposes.

Whilst seated beside the lake we were told the old myth of Lake Simbi a folk tale told by the people of the area. The tale told us about how the law came to be, the healing purposes of it which many people of the area believe and the environmental facts about the lake. Listening to the tale I did get lost as I didn’t think it made sense and had many potholes within it.

All in all I did enjoy seeing Lake Simbi as it was pretty to look at and I did not dare go near the water regardless of its believed healing purposes. Instead I took in the views and the nice breeze that was in the air. The day was lovely as always and it was nice having all CM4K students present.

Ending the day by removing Halima’s braids was funny as all of us girls took part and made many jokes within the process.

Extra editing day

As Luca had mentioned in his blog on Wednesday he was worried the video group weren’t having enough time to edit all videos gathered, especially considering there was only 2 of us editing from our group. I thought this was a nice comment to make from Luca as he was aware of what task we had to had how we had to produce a lot of work quickly for Wednesday next week. Because of this, the fieldwork we were supposed to go on today was pushed back to allow us a day to edit.

This day was more than useful to me as I got a lot of work completed and began new video edits and was able to give Peter all that I had completed as far. This day allowed me to catch up on edits and make any changes that needed to be made. Even though I had a lot to do the day was a drag especially due to how hot it was I became tired and wanted escape outside for some fresh air. Unfortunately, this blog is short but mostly due to my day being spent on editing nothing else happened. But I did appreciate the consideration for editors, if this day wasn’t given I don’t think i’d have gotten as far with editing as I did .

My first post – Thoughts about everyone posts

This is my first time contributing to this website. I feel sad that I couldn’t go to Kenya in the end. After reading my course mates posts here, I could tell that everyone is enjoying themselves and gaining plenty of experiences. I also could tell how everyone is working hard towards everything and trying their best to produce the best outcomes!

While reading people’s posts, I gained a better knowledge on our project and Cham gi Wadu as a community. First, I read Luca’s post about communication. Communication is the most important part for every plan to run smoothly and I understand how hard it is to actually maintain a proper communication between each other. But it is good how everything worked out in the end for them! The second one is post made by Community Media 4 Kenya (which I believe it’s Peter). On one of his posts on day 3 where the community arrive, I could tell how supportive the community are regarding building a community radio station. One of the beneficial for a community radio station is to improving a community by sharing knowledge and information both on what they already know and don’t know before.

Furthermore, the idea of assets mapping is really good! With this community will gain better knowledge on their own community. Also, by teaching them it will be beneficial as they could continue what Brighton students left and creates a better and more thorough assets map.

I am excited to see the results of the videos and interviews! Hope all of this make sense. This post is just what I though of everyone works 🙂

My Last Blog in Kenya – Luca

Hey everyone, it’s just a short one today – and unlike where I usually say it’ll be short and it isn’t, today I promise it will be. This is mainly because it’s a bitter sweet day, everyone is coming together for our final day, and I want to savour my last few moments here at the University surrounded by all the wonderful people we’ve met.

As I didn’t update yesterday due to poor connection, I shall quickly do that now! We had another edit day, so we spent it in the classroom. I quite a bit of spare time as I do not have as much to edit as the other groups (which I do feel quite guilty about). I ended up working on my assignment for this module and just catching up on work, so all in all it was still quite productive. 🙂

It’s now Wednesday, and as I said our final full day at the University. I am unsure when we will be able to get online again – if at all for the rest of the trip. We have the community coming in today, and we’re going to show them the map and all the content we’ve created for it. I really hope they’re happy with what we’ve done! I feel all in all it could be quite an emotional experience!

After lunch, we’re then off to The Treat House to have some goodbye drinks, I’m really quite sad to say goodbye, especially to my little puppy friend Nancy, my heart is breaking! I’d take her home in a heartbeat if I could, she’d be so loved by everyone I just know it. At least I still have my fond memories, I just hope she will be okay, and that people will be kind to her. We’re up bright and early tomorrow too where we’ll be heading off on our safari after a bright and early breakfast, and then it’ll be back to England on Saturday. I am sure that when I get back and when I’ve caught up on life I’ll do a reflection on my whole trip here, I must remind myself to save some for my assignment though. 😛

But once again, thank you for your time. I hope you’ve enjoyed hearing about our experiences here as much as we’ve adored being a part of it all. It’s been phenomenal, and I only hope that one day I’ll be able to visit again. But for now, goodbye, it’s been amazing, life-changing, and I’ve met some friends hopefully for life. I’ll update when I arrive back in chilly old Brighton! Be safe everyone, and take care.

Luca. 🙂

Day 15

Breakfast was toast and scrambled egg! The cooks have started putting the Weetabix directly in front of my place as im the only one who eats it everyday. I will really miss the breakfasts here.

Not much for me to do today as I’m up to date on all my blogs and work. I created a PowerPoint resource (available on student central) for Ayu, Nat and Peter mainly to look at. As it summarises all of our fieldwork trips so far accompanied with pictures that I’ve taken.

Something that I have noticed by working by myself during the editing process is how much everything is slowed down by waiting for people. The work we are doing works like a chain and often one group can’t complete their work until they have collected something from another group. Or someone can’t move on until they’ve spoken to Peter but his too busy to see them straight away. Accompanied with the fact that the internet seems to break every 15 mins it makes things take ridiculously long. If we were here longer I would suggest revaluating how we go about editing and also prioritising work but seeing as the presentation to the community is tomorrow this seems a bit irrelevant now.

I suggested doing the raffle today as we have had them ready since yesterday but again I was told that we needed to wait for Jerry to do this. I hope we have time tomorrow as I think it will be a busy day but I have learnt that things being organised last minute seems to be the Kenyan way. Classroom work is so draining I’m glad its our last day doing it! At least with fieldwork you have stimulation from other people and your walking round keeping active with fresh air.

For now, I’m just hoping its an early dinner so I can head back to the pastoral centre early and wash some of my clothes ready to pack in my bag tomorrow evening as we leave for the Masai Mara early Thursday Morning.

Day 14

I really didn’t want to get out of bed today. I really contemplated telling the others that I couldn’t go in today but after some sleepy reflection I decided I would be really disappointed in myself if I didn’t at least try to go in and do some work. This is such a unique experience, I may never do something like this in my life again so I really should put my most into the opportunity given to me.

Breakfast was omelette but bread too. So, I abandoned my Weetabix and had an omelette sandwich. Probably not very good for me at all but damn it was good. After breakfast we went in search of Mama to give her some scraps, but alas, she was nowhere to be found. We have decided that most of the dogs look quite Shiba Innu like. They’re all obviously cross breeds but they have the distinctive curled tails pointed nose and smile with lots of them being a sand like colouring.

After meeting in the classroom to collect equipment we set off on our journey to the first destination. I Have used Lucas notes to write this, so thanks Luca! As I was busy taking photos all of today and didn’t have enough hands or time to log my own notes too.

Kanyimach Primary School

  • Long – E034, 3.497
  • Lat – S00,55.272

P.0.Box 46 Sare. Found in Rongo County, South West Cham gi Wadu. There are 17 primary schools in the region. It was founded in 1926 and is one of the oldest schools in the region possibly the district. The teaching age is preschool to class 8. The school’s principle is Magero Maurice and the deputy is Kennedy Ouko. Just at the bottom of the fields for this school is the second school on our visit.

Kanyimach Secondary School

  • Long – E034, 36.469
  • Lat – S00, 55.245

The principle is the same for the primary as it is for the secondary. This school was only founded in 2016 when a man called Ben donated 1.2 million shillings for the structure to be built. It first started under the church with the Pastor acting as principle but then the responsibility was passed on to Magero Maurice who will hand over the position as soon as the government sends another principle. It has 106 students and 8 teachers all paid by the community. Again, just across from this school is a field containing a church. Everything here has been within close walking distance which is nice as I wore flipflops today.

Kanyimach Seventh Day Adventists Church

  • Long – E034, 36.446
  • Lat – S00, 55.156

The pastors name is Zachary Opiyo Songora. The church opened in 1922 and runs a successful Saturday service, like most of the SDA Churches we have visited. We then hopped back on the bus to visit another shopping centre. So as not to confuse anyone I must highlight the fact that the Kenyan Shopping Centres are absolutely nothing like British Shopping Centres. They resemble more of a quiet Sunday market in England.

Kogenya Shopping Centre

  • Long – E034, 36.443
  • Lat – S00, 55.982

It is named after prominent village elder who donated land for construction of the flea market. Its run by the Luo Community. One of the community members introduced us to Rebecca Achieng Odtiamho who was happy to be interviewed. I spoke to Mac and asked if would be able to translate for Luca and myself as this woman only spoke Swahili and Luo. I then left them to talk whilst I went and took more photos. When I returned Luca seemed really pleased with how it all went and told me that she would love a community radio station so that she could have a slot for widows. They can have a space to have a voice and reach out to other women for support and guidance. This is a wonderful idea and hopefully something that can be set up once the station is up and running.

I spoke to more of the children whilst I waited for people to come back to the bus. I’m finding it less alarming being pointed at and swarmed upon. I don’t know if its because I’ve grown used to it or if it was because the children were in much smaller numbers today. I was trying to talk to them in Luo and Swahili as I’m determined to learn a few phrases.

Fiona and Halima had a heated discussion on the bus about politics. They clearly have opposing views and although I thought It might be awkward to see them arguing it was actually very interesting to see their passion in healthy debate. It wasn’t so different from conversations I’ve had with friends about politics in the UK, showing that there are similarities between our cultures. All of this is in the wake of tomorrow and the leader of NASA getting signed in against the current president and governments wishes. It will be interesting to see what happens!

We then went back to the University to edit what we had produced. Halima wrote some of the spellings for Luo and Swahili words I have learnt so that I can start using them in my blogs.

We had dinner and returned to the centre and did our usual stop off to buy a kinder joy on the way home. They only have two left now so I hope they stock up on them before we leave.

Asante Sana for reading!