Izaac's Adventure with YoCO Abingdon in Kenya
My fundraising started in early 2019 with the Abingdon YOCO group. We did various group fundraisers such as concerts, running 5km and car parking at a local village festival. This was a good way to become familiar with others in my group and created a strong team mentality. We landed at Kisumu airport and were greeted by our designated Nasio drivers and they were very helpful and friendly all through our drive to the compound, pointing out local traditions and explaining some of them to us. They also pointed out local landmarks.
Upon arrival to the guest house we were greeted with singing, dancing and music. The atmosphere was so welcoming and friendly which instantly made us all feel at home. The first thing that I noticed about Kenya was how efficient and resourceful everybody was, hardly anything went to waste. This was a big eye opener for me and made me really appreciate my resources back in England.
One of our groups biggest contributions to the community was building a house for two different local families. I was amazed at the teamwork of the locals and how willing they were to get involved even though it would bring them no personal benefit. Building the houses was hard work but also fun to learn a new way of construction. The families were so grateful for their new homes as it gave them a dry and safe place to sleep and keep their belongings.
The staff at the guesthouse were all so friendly and accommodating, the rooms were cozy and very comfortable. The staff worked so well to help us feel well accommodated. Three meals were prepared for us daily and the food was amazing with a great mixture of Kenyan and English foods. I tried a lot of new flavours throughout the trip and the local food is something I highly recommend.
One of my favourite memories of the trip was visiting Kakamega rainforest as we saw such a variety of wildlife that many of us had never encountered before. The Kenyan landscape was beautiful and it’s something I will never forget.
I am so grateful that I was offered this opportunity at such a young age, not many people can say they went to Kenya and contributed so much to the local community, for that reason I encourage anybody especially young people to get involved. It was an experience of a lifetime and I made a great group of friends along the way.
Written by Izaac, Abingdon YoCO Group, 2019/20