Pam's Idea for Reflective Items/another one: school uniforms
- Dear Pam and All,Thanks for your excellent idea, something which--when mentioned--brings a lot of resonance, but which (as you say yourself) people don't usually think much about. So glad you brought it up!I/we will be interested to hear feedback from people in Kenya and elsewhere: since so many use bicycles, walk, or ride motorscooters, I would think there would certainly be a need and a market.One other thing I am constantly running across, at least in Kenya: the need for school uniforms, and sometimes lack of same, which impedes some would-be students from attending school. There are some projects which have developed (I believe Hezekiah of Reachout, who is here at HH, has one) along these lines, using donated sewing machines, which are relatively inexpensive in Kenya ($75 or so).But the need is so much greater: I'm thinking now about Tom Ochuka and his young folks, also Charles Aboge and the Kisumu Children's Centre, where a potential donation of uniforms from the UK may not happen because we cannot find a shipper, and then of course there are the shipping and import fees. We may be able to locate some volunteers or employees of UK-based nonprofits who are travelling to Kenya and can carry small amounts of clothing, but that in itself is a challenge.So having a locally-based capacity is, for several reasons (employment, skills-building, community and individual development, ready supply of uniforms for students, more youth in school as a result), of utmost importance. This is something we can also think about, and the reflective clothing and items can be included in this type of project.With greatest thanks for bringing this to our attention, Pam, and hope this is something we can work on soon! Janet----- Original Message -----From: Pamela McLeanSent: Wednesday, March 26, 2008 6:51 PMSubject: [learningfromeachother] Re: About sotik follow upThis is a very simple idea that I had when I was in Nigeria. I am not sure if it a good idea, or if it is so relevant to Kenya, but I will share it.
When I am in Nigeria I am very concerned for the safety of people on the roads, and after dark it is particularly dangerous. No street lighting, Cars with poor lights. Many potholes causing cars to swerve. No pavements - so people are walking in the roadways.
I was driving in a car one night and we came up behind a motorcyclist. I was thinking how invisible he looked and how invisible people are until the last moment when a vehicle is nearly on top of them, and how dangerous it is. Suddenly I realised that no-one was wearing any reflective clothing. I thought of all the reflective clothes, bags and strips, that I have used, and seen, at home. When I rode a bike I bought a reflective strip on purpose to wear over my clothes. Lots of the other reflective things I have had just looked like a part of the trimming, or the logo or something. Sometimes I did not notice when I bought them, but then when it was dark I realised they were reflective. An anorak I bought last year has small but very reflective circles which are just stuck on (again I didn't even notice them when I bought it, but they really catch what light there is at night.)
This made me think that perhaps there could be a market for reflective things in Nigeria (and perhaps is Kenya). If it was possible to import strips of reflective material, perhaps local tailors could sew it onto things that peopel would like to buy, to make them safer. Perhaps they could make backpacks with reflective strips for people to wear when they rode on motorbikes, or maybe just decorate ordinary jackets or fleeces (I know we needed clothes like that at night in Kenya), or baseball caps, or even shirts like football shirts with a big reflective number like your favourite football player's shirt. There are lots of things that could be made reflective. It woudl be a good thing to help people to be safer on the roads.
Would this be worth trying?
Is there a need in Kenya?
Could it be done at a profit?
Would people buy reflective things?
Would it be worth making them or is it already possible to buy ready made things from China more cheaply?
If it is a good idea then we could find out about getting the reflective material. I met a man recently who makes tents and things like that. He goes to China to buy all different kinds and sizes of reflective strips. He could advise us about producers. He might even be able to give us some samples to experiment with if anyone knows someone who is travelling from UK to Kenya who would take them out. They are not heavy.
Perhaps it is a Bad Idea. Perhaps it is a Good Idea. I will not know until I have shared it.
PamOn 25/03/2008, Edmix Sounds <edmixsound@...> wrote:
Hope you are doing great and thank the almighty for the live and burden God has given you.
we are doing great and appreciate this far God has brought us with your help and we always pray that God may bless you abundantly with your families.
there is a small request i had made about the follow up of sotik follow up before we went to the conference we had in Nakuru.
the mission which i had done facts finding on the ground.
with a good heart guys from sotik have been calling me to tell me how they are doing and how things are working currently.
through the calls they have been making, the area councilor has been constantly asking when we will be going back to sotik,
the time i preparing to leave sotik, the elders had asked if this was a first visit or it was just a spying mission i had come to do,
I told them it was a genuine peace building we were doing and not part of the government business.
I Thought it was a good idea of going back and continue building that trust from where i left, and at least go with a one person may be a lady like Rachel to sotik so that she can also have a word with them also.
actually the other idea was to encourage then to form there own groups and think of something they can do together which can generate income for themselves and the community at large.
I wanted you guys to think about it and let me know what your input will be for this.
THanks and hope to hear from you.
what if we could try things we have failed Everyday differently, what could one have achieved?
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- Habari gani,
Amesbury for Africa is a UN Sister Cities project with the village of Esabalu, Kenya. We have had a School Uniform project to supply school children there with uniforms. Now that secondary schools are tuition free the need will be greater.
Our program enlists high school students in Amesbury, Massachusetts USA to gather funds. Each person donates enough to buy one student a uniform, book bag, socks and shoes. The funds are sent to a school in Esabalu and the headmaster contacts a local company to supply the uniforms. a photo and note of thanks from the student is sent back to the US for each person who donates. Visit our website at http://www.amesburyforafrica.org/
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