No, I am not talking about a mission to new frontiers like the spaceship „Enterprise“ does since countless episodes, or the satellite „JUNO“ that just arrived the orbit of the biggest planet Jupiter. My article addresses a need here on earth and in a corner of our world that is always somehow in need. I am talking about the continent of Africa.
I remember meeting a pastor about 25 years ago. In his hallway there was a big wooden box. Never saw a box like that before. Asking him about it, he told me that this was a box that missionaries used for their belongings if they moved away from home to serve on a mission field somewhere in the world. In some way that made sense to me. I am a Globetrotter all my life and I like to take a few things from home with me on my journeys. And if someone moves to another part of the world for good, they want to have some personal things from home along with them. But still I was questioning the size of this big peace of wood. The pastors answer to that was astonishing to me. He said those missionaries left home to die on the missions field they went to. They often left their families with the knowledge they will never come back alive. And the box final use was to ship the dead body of the missionary back home to be buried in the soil of their mothers or fathers country. Hard to imagine that a dead person were shipped by boat for weeks maybe month back home. Hearing that explanation I took a step back from the box imagining that a dead person maybe was carried in the box right in front of me.
But I will draw your attention to those men and women that spend their life with a lot of despair in countries of this earth where living conditions were never easy and are not easy till today. Those people gave their life to reach and to teach natives basic things of life to give africans or asians at the end of the world a hope and a future. They gave them training in how to live together about health and hygiene. They thought them how to write and to read. And a especially this opened doors for a lot of native people. Because of being able to read and to write their countries were changed. Natives went to other parts of their own country or continent and thought others the same things. Slowly but surely a country like Kenya changed for good in some areas. Today only a few people from Europe or the US are going to Africa. If they do, they call it „A short term Mission“. But honestly what can somebody do or achieve if they just stay a few month or two years. I am tempted to say „nothing“. The young people of today in Africa need more than reading and writing skills. The world around them need people that know how to set up a computer or a network. Africa needs local native experts of cyber technology. A future of a young african is depending if she or he knows how to use a text or calculation software program. Knowledge in web side programing is required.
„Bernard´s Vision School“ in Kisumo/Kenya is a place like that. Reverent Bernard Ondiek has that kind of vision to give young people training and skills in those areas of modern life. The more than 500 children that are living with him in his orphanage know writing and reading, Mathematics and english but Benard want to go the second mile. In his plan is another building and the opening of a high school. But he needs everything in order to fulfill what is on his heard to help the african kids. He needs building material, computers, laboratory equipment. And maybe it touched your heart to help Benard in his big task. You don’t need to be afraid to spent the rest of your life there. Don´t worry that you may come back in a big wooden box. Today you even don’t need to go somewhere in order to help. Most of the times it takes a little bit of money, a pocket money amount of currency to change a situation, to change a little bit of this world.
I am against all efforts to take a country over by teaching them all the things we are thinking are important. We should not tell a Kenyan to eat Cheeseburgers, Spagetti or Paella. They should stay with their Ugali what I personally like very much. But we should take our responsibly to keep going with a mission that others started decades before. Let us help in that regard that a country like Kenya comes a little bit more self sustainable if we help to give youngsters in Kenya a hope and a future.