Norwich Christian student on mission to Kenya
UEA student Rebecca Long travelled to Kenya this summer as part of a Christian mission team who worked several schools, two prisons and a slum.
Rebecca was part of a team of seven girls sent out by Mission Africa to Kenya for three weeks. They partnered with iTeams (International Teams) who are based in Kenya. Rebecca is studying Occupational Therapy at the UEA and attends Norwich Central Baptist Church.
The team spent two weeks in Kikuyu, which is about an hour outside of Nairobi. They went into two secondary schools and several primary schools during their visit where they organised a programme similar to a holiday bible club. The programme included a bible story, quiz, memory verse and craft. Rebecca said, "The children loved getting involved and it was amazing to see them praising God so passionately.
We also taught first aid, a practical skill but linked back to the gospel."
At the secondary schools, the team shared a short message, sang with the pupils and did a ‘Bible relay challenge’. Rebecca said, "It was lovely to meet pupils around the same age as us and we realised they are no different to us. They have dreams to become pilots, doctors, nurse, lawyers – just like we in the UK do! The pupils at these schools definitely encouraged and humbled us as a team."
The girls visited Kamiti Maximum Security Prison and Nairobi Prison. At each prison, one of the team members shared a message and they used ‘cardboard testimonies’ to minister to the prisoners. Rebecca said, "It was incredible to watch prisoners unashamedly worship Christ, despite their past."
The group shared bible stories with children at Dandora Slum, which is situated directly beside the largest rubbish dump in Kenya. Rebecca said, "It was a difficult experience to watch people in such poverty but we were all humbled by their love and kindness." They visited an organisation called Ayiera Initiative which uses football to reach young children in the slum.
In the final week, the group travelled to Oyugis in Kisumu where they spent time at a primary school called Echoes of Mercy. The children who attend this school are orphans but live in the community. This orphanage houses 44 children and the whole team felt very overwhelmed and humbled by the opportunity to visit the children and staff.
Pictured above: Rebecca with some of the children she met in Kenya and with the Mission Africa team