Brothers and sisters around the globe, I’m impressed by the number of people who are reading my blog. This makes me strong! Today it’s Friday around 8pm, September 18th 2009. I woke up a happy man and my heart was pumping with this words, “I never gave up” this was the energy that kept me through the whole day, the words keep on ringing in my ears.
I kennedy ,a boy who was raised in the slums never gave up. I remember when I had no hope in life, when the future seemed dark, when friends and relatives turned away from me and when my community organiztion had no funds to make it moving. But I do accept that I never gave up although I could not see any way out. I kept on doing good and hoping for the better.
I know what it means to struggle in a slum with no job. I know its not easy but I want to share with young people not to give up. Brothers and sisters push it and the wall will break and I say again, keep on pushing and don’t worry about time soon you will harvest. Don’t engage into bad behaviors that will reduce you chances of living. Keep in mind that the world is watching you, my brother and sister HIV/AIDS is also waiting for the people. Don’t let the world win over you, because I know we can make it. We can see and hear true stories of people who never gave up and now they are on the top of the world. We also know our father Nelson Mandela, a man who never gave up in life and he became the hope of the world. In America, we also know about President Barack Obama, this are self-made people who never gave up. I know it might look sad and the only option is to turn into drinking and wasting your body. This is war and we need to win, don’t surrender. I say fight until the end.
It’s not easy growing up in Kibera slums. I remember how life was hard and we had no where to look at. We could explore different ways of survival and how to have something to eat. Sometimes we could wake up in the morning and start walking to Catholic missionary homes with the aim of finding food. My friend Erick was very good in timing the lunch when the missionaries would be sitting down for their meals. We knew almost all the big seminaries in Nairobi from Langata to Karen.
We didn’t have to ask for the appointment as it used to be, because most of them were from Europe and America. I have to admit that, it was a little bit strange for them to see us visiting them without appointment and mostly at Lunch time when the food was being served. We used to eat as if we are going to die because we knew there will be no other day. Food for us was luck and a day to pass without food was the norm of life and we were used for that. There was a day that I kept the food in my pocket without everyone noticing. The food was good and they told us to feel free. Everytime I saw such a mount of food, I got scared to know that some people are having good meals every day while others have nothing to eat. This day we were in Don Bosco Utume. Honestly this thought made me think of becoming a priest, I knew that I always get food if I become a priest. Although I was scared of not marrying. Marriage was an important part of my life. I wanted to share my story with my kids. My dream was to struggle hard so that my kids gonna have a better life than mine.
I thank the Most High, everyday of my life for granting me this opportunity that Kennedy Odede can also be in a class with other people who comes from a better economical families. I have been studying hard and sweating each an everyday. I know that my future is in my hands but many students here in America have no worry to struggle because their future rest in the hands of their families. I know that I worked hard to be where I am, I know it was not easy for me to be here now and I should keep on working hard.
Its interesting to know that many students here don’t know what they want to be in future or what they want to do. This is because there are many opportunities here in America and you don’t have to rush. Some times my tears roll down when I remember that I had no option of what I should eat, I didn’t care about the nutrition food but I just wanted something that can fill my stomach. I didn’t have an option of anything and my option was to wake up early at 3 am to go and work in a construction site, where my work was to carry heavy blocks of stones up to the top floors of the constructed houses. I know its sad but “I never gave up” and I will never.
I can see light at the end of the tunnel and I know the doors will be opened for the people who will never give up.
Peace and love!