Laying the Foundation
Last week I was traveling upcountry for a friend’s memorial service. As we waited for the bus, I noticed four street kids roaming freely in town. Every once in a while, they would approach a matatu, but before they could get close to it, the passengers would close the windows. None of the passengers would even dare look at them.
Then out of nowhere, they saw me. They came running and hugged me. The few friends with whom I was standing also got the unique hug – accompanied with the unique stench.
While I was trying to figure out who they were, they started telling stories of FIKISHA. They had been to the FIKISHA Rehabilitation Program more than once. We spent a short time together, laughing and talking. A person serving hot coffee came along and we each had a cup.
I asked them how many of their friends had been to FIKISHA and they said most of them. As we continued talking, three of them left while a friend I was traveling with was trying to engage them. Dennis, who was the oldest, didn’t leave. When I asked why he didn’t go with his friends, he told me he would rather sit and make friendship rather than try talking to people in town who didn’t want to talk with them.
Once our bus arrived, we hurriedly boarded it. Dennis and his friends promised to visit us again at the program. The friends who I was traveling with were very impressed and also said they would attend one of our program days.
– Moses Aboka, Operations Director