Kenya Trip 2023
After the end of term, a team of 24 students and 4 staff travelled to Kenya for a 2 ½ week expedition combining a mix of volunteering, medical work experience, high altitude trekking and safari. The trip was a great success allowing many opportunities for life-changing experiences which they will never forget.
During the trip, the students documented their adventures in a group journal. Here is a summary of the Kenya trip by Risa, a student in 6.1: “This trip, I feel like I’ve really grown, gotten to know new people, put myself up for new challenges and faced hardships I’ve never faced before.
Each and every memory I’ve made on this trip means so much to me and I will treasure all of the time I have spent with the Kenya team, peers and teachers. From teaching the most energetic, willing to learn, group of children, to watching surgeries, to climbing a whole mountain and watching animals up close, every second has been so meaningful.
Looking back, I cried, I laughed, I ate and spent so so much lovely time with everyone. I would never trade these memories for anything. Now I have finally achieved something I can be MEGA proud of, and I have made my life 1000x more interesting. I can’t wait to share all of my stories and experiences when I go back home”.
The first phase of the trip was spent in the rural county town of Embu where the group stayed in a scout hut for just over a week. In the lead up to the trip the group had been raising funds for The Moving Mountains Trust charity which has been operating in Embu for about twenty years. In total they raised £9,600 from a combination of fundraising events and their own personal donations. These funds helped to support a range of initiatives in Embu and the charity organised a wonderful programme of activities for them which included:
- Teaching dental health to primary children in two schools.
- Spending time into both public and private hospitals where they were privileged to be able to watch numerous operations up close.
- Helped to run health clinics for the slum community.
- Visiting the Embu Centre for Street Children where they served lunch and interacted with many young local children.
- Food drops to the poorest families in the slums and a chance to learn about life in these communities.
- Renovation of two classrooms in St. Dominic’s Special School.
- Supporting the local football team run by the Rescue Centre, The Black Cats.
“Embu was extremely heart-warming. It solidified my aspirations to be a doctor and also gave me further inspiration to try and help people”. -Aurel, 6.1.
“The most interesting part was just learning about the kids’ everyday life, what they love about Kenya, what they want to be when they grow up. In turn, I also shared a few things about myself, like what Singapore is like, pictures of my family, my interests etc”. -Noel, 6.1.
After this intensive and eye-opening week, they packed for the physically challenging phase two, an adventure trek to the summit of Mount Kenya (4895m). The arduous ascent took 4 days and the group reached the summit at sunrise with many identifying this as the hardest thing they’d ever done and an achievement they would never forget.
“The journey to the summit was amazing, filled with tears, but I don’t regret doing it. I’m very proud of myself for sticking through it and experiencing every part of this Kenya trip. I now have the bragging rights of climbing Mount Kenya and surviving wild camping!”. – Isabel, 6.1.
“I have definitely stepped out of my comfort zone and I am very proud of myself” -Isabel, 6.1.
The final phase of the trip was rest and relaxation and a chance to see the natural world through some beautiful safaris. The group visited Ol Pejeta Game Conservancy, Lake Naivasha and Hell’s Gate National Park. They were lucky to see 4 of the “Big Five” with only the elusive leopard evading them.
“We were so lucky on the safari, coming across the most amazing scene. Not only a pride of lions enjoying their kill, but a rhino mother and calf also on the scene, with the mother defending her calf from the lions. In the background, hyenas were approaching and the giraffes were approaching too!” -Dr Outram.
Over their time in Africa, the group of students were fantastic and made many new friends amongst the Kenyan staff. This experience has certainly changed their perspective on life, allowed them to find new physical, mental and emotional limits. They’ve also been inspired by the adults of the Moving Mountains Trust, many of whom were street children themselves. They’ve seen how treating people as equals and empowering them can transform lives. This lesson will stay with them for life.
“To all the future people who wish to join this trip: I cannot put into words how much I would recommend it. You’ll definitely make memories that will stay with you forever. Thank you, friends, teachers and staff. Thank you, Kenya,”. – Noel, 6.1.