By Ombaka Brian Tabasamu
In this life there are certain paths we choose to walk that change our lives for ever. February 19th 2013 marked the cradle step into the thousand miles of my path. This was also going to be my first time to board a plane. My body was tensed up, with my mind trying to forget all the mathematical calculations of how high we would be flying. As the plane took off, I knew there was no turning back as I silently watched the terrain slowly change from the beautiful, green, vegetative state of Nairobi to rocky escarpments of vast, barren land. While my body and mind were still grappling with the oblivion of the metaphysical world, I was met with the certain reality of the sweltering weather on our touch down in Lodwar.
During my stay in Lodwar, I encountered the negation of women by stifling, cultural and societal beliefs. Beliefs that viewed them as property with price tags equivalent to the certain number of livestock they could fetch. Early marriage, child defilement, domestic violence and child abandonment are still normal and acceptable occurrences that can be settled by a few goats. Despite the great burden on women, they are industrious and hard working. Their sheer hope and determination can make anyone fall in love with the community.
It is out of this love that ‘Wings of Hope’ was born, love that transcended continents from friends like Crossroads Nazarene Church, Tough Angels and Servant Forge. Indeed love is a universal language and as this love takes shape in the structural construction of ‘Wings of Hope,’ it will offer a safe haven to survivors of gender based violence and the community at large. It will be a voice for the voiceless through the collaborative referral network in terms of legal assistance, clinical treatment and a psychosocial support system.
When you learn the language of love, there is NO heart you can’t touch. Sometimes it is through the self-sacrifice or selfless service. Sometimes it is through our resources; our time, and our money. Whichever case it may be, it doesn’t count until you step in and do something!
About Ombaka Brian Tabasamu
Brian has lead many projects in Kenya and continues to serve his community to help create meaningful and lasting solutions!
From 2010-2012 in the Korogocho slums in Nairobi,Kenya. Brian brought together different stakeholders to discuss the reintegration of youth involved in crime, drug, and substance abuse. The program went for two years and it involved many youth working to reduce and eliminate drug use and abuse in the pilot village of Korogocho.