I must say that the camping arrangement was much more comfortable than I expected (even with the no-hot-water camp showers). Each morning saw a blazing sunrise climb into our valley location and then ended with a similar evening sunset.
The last two days of camping had us ranging further away into the Southern Rift Valley. We visited the community at Entasopia where MANDO had supported the implementation of a solar mini-grid within the community. We stopped at the local medical clinic (called a “dispensary” though it had all the facilities for outpatient and basic surgical care). This clinic had sufficient solar to light the lights but not to run the equipment. Additionally, it was too far away and required too much power to receive the benefits of the solar mini-grid. The Deeper Missions team discussed options including the clinic’s own solar mini-grid.
We also visited a rural girls’ school originally built by Compassion International before being handed over to the local government. The assistant director showed us around the grounds and we were able to greet students and staff and get many of our questions answered regarding the sufficiency of the school’s access to energy, water and sanitation.
Our visits to possible project sites in Maasailand concluded with a visit to the planned location for a safe house for girls under risk of early marriage and FGM and to a community needing a borehead well. The second stop, the busy Enkoireroi Market Center enjoys the benefit of a solar mini-grid installation but lacks water security. Deeper Missions has already teamed with MANDO to submit a small grant proposal to a Washington, DC area Rotary Club in order to top-off the funding already secured for this very needy project.
With confidence that there will soon be a reliable water supply the community has already embarked on building a medical clinic between the bustling business area and the local school.
Because the Maasai culture values and respects its visitors, the local family clans pulled out the stops, slaughtering and roasting a goat in our honor and provided an evening of Maasai warrior experiences with young men demonstrating singing, dancing and jumping all against the backdrop of a blazing fire and bright starlit night. It was a wonderful capstone event that made our brief time among the Maasai people a truly once-in-a-lifetime experience.
From here we began our trek north and west to visit other NGOs on the shores of Lake Victoria and into Uganda.