Monday, 26 July 2010

Can't live with out'em.

Tomorrow morning is the beginning of our STAKEN holiday. Although it is for work, we are traveling to Mombasa A.K.A Paradise A.K.A Pirate Negotiating Point. I somehow convinced a local organization to fund us to go and meet other youth doing the same thing we are. Work will definitely happen but I know it's going to be a memorable fiesta. PEACE OUT NAIROBI.

This theme is giving big love to the strong women out there.





Saturday, 17 July 2010

Down By The Riverrr

I have made a conscious decision with this blog to not bore everyone with constant updates about our recycling businesses. I do on the other hand, know that people are generally interested in what it is here at Up With Hope that we do

http://www.vancouverobserver.com/blogs/comfortvschange/2010/03/07/hope-addresses-waste-management-issues-kenya-through-three-east

I think I should take a couple seconds to tell people where we have come since we started in 2007. I'd first like to thank all the people who have helped share this blog with their friends, family and colleagues. If you are reading this and I don't know you, you're my new friend. Feel free to say hi.

We currently have two operational recycling centres in Nairobi. It has been an absolutely mind blowing experience working with everyone in Nairobi trying to get these businesses off the ground. There have been so many obstacles in our way that have made things no easier for us, and at times I laugh at myself for working so hard to get a business going that I will never financially benefit from. That laughter doesn't last very long once I think about how much I have learned since we started this project. Yesterday Kaka told me that if it hadn't been for me they would have given up already and that I have really given them moral, basically making my whole life worth while.

From racist cartels and a corrupt city council we have worked with a lot of odds against us. Up With Hope is not a large organization by any means, the project was initiated by a bunch of broke guys who started off knowing absolutely nothing about development work, which looking back on is really screwed up, but funnily enough we had the right formula and both centres have now been selected as beneficiaries for funding by UN-HABITAT and OXFAM as well as other support from local and international NGO's. We new we had the right formula when we tried to tackle joblessness and environment in the same punch.

I am confident that if I left tomorrow the businesses would keep running with out me. The question is, do I want to? The answer is hell no. It's too much fun grinding, welding, sorting, sweating, bleeding and all sorts of hedonistic things. We say here with this job "You have to love this work". We've had a lot of volunteers come and go, they don't really enjoy wading in trash. I have a huge vision with the people I work with and I want to work with them to attain it. The groups I am working with are some of the best people I've ever met and when we started this project my biggest fear was that the businesses would never go anywhere. Thanks to the scrupulous selection of the people we work with I know that our work will never go to waste. RECYCLING IS GREAT.

By the way Up With Hope is always accepting donations. We can always buy more plastic!


Today's theme is life by the river.




Monday, 12 July 2010

Glue and BOOZE

Now here is a little compilation of the people who make Nairobi Nairobi. Glue kids and drunks can be frustrating and annoying but they can also be the funniest people to listen to.

One thing about les glue boyz that I laugh about is that they can sleep anywhere at anytime. Usually during rush hour you see some sleeping right beside a busy road lying face down in the grass. At night time you can see them converging to Nairobi's massive round-abouts which are full of lush plants while they create massive bonfires. As much as I would like to walk over with some weiners and marshmellows I think my presence would make them a little confused.






I remember when a local glue kid came up to me high as hell and asked me to help him since his head a massive laceration that was gushing blood. There was no way I was going to touch it but I told him to wash it. I saw him a few minutes later when he returned after washing the cut with some sewage water. There wasn't a whole lot I could do. I didn't see him for a while after that which worried me since he was a nice guy. Thankfully, he did show up one day walking around carrying a bag of banana peels singing a kikuyu song.