It is said by the locals around the Kakamega Musanda/Milimani areas of Kenya that when their major sugar factory shut down, it was like going for the jugular for the majority of homes trying to source income.
For farmers to factory workers and traders, who have had to start anew, they are still grappling with finding other sources of income and some of these families find that the work of the Nasio Trust is lifesaving.
Nasio Trusts’ work within Musanda and Milimani, partnering with a health centre and schools provides safe water, decent healthcare and education and now through a partnership with Play Action international. Children as young as 3 and as old as 17 years have beautiful playgrounds on which their lives will be enriched through creative play; active play, and recreational play. The approach is to cater to every child’s holistic development through the POWER of PLAY.
This year, Christmas came early for many children in Kenya, but teachers, parents and health workers were not left empty handed. Play Action International trained and certified them by using play as a tool to educate and improve the healing process for children.
Play remains the single most effective way to provide a fun and safe environment for children to flourish and learn to deal with uncertain times like the COVID-19 pandemic.
Catherine (above) is in her late 50s, however this didn’t limit her from playing with passion. Play Action International is looking to tailor a training academy to support parents and help develop their skills through play, so parents and children can not only bond but thrive.
Like all the other parents and teachers, we met in Kenya it’s as though Catherine encountered play for the first time ever since she was a child. When she received her post-training certificate, she leaped for joy, she was so ecstatic, more of us joined her in clapping and dancing.
An authentic playground coupled with training around play can change a community for the better, I saw this happen for the first time in my life and I am looking forward to other sightings like I had in Kenya. It was a much-needed breath of fresh air amidst the COVID-19 pandemic.
Christmas this 2020 did come early for 50-year-old Catherine and her 5 children who go to Milimani Township Primary School and ECD centre.
Andrew Epenu – Programmes Coordinator
Could you support a parent like Catherine? Donate to our Christmas appeal and help enrich the lives of other children and parents through play.