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Africa, a 17 year old, his camera, and his inner musings...

Meet the Africans I met and the hardships they often face

Josh in Africa

These two young women are students at a public school called Laila, in Ololulungo village. You can see the sheer pride and happiness in their smiles. These two girls don't have to carry 50 pounds of infected water to their homes, five times a day. Instead, they get an education. They get to fulfill their lifelong dreams. And, on top of that, they get to bring home clean water from their school at the end of every day. That is what I call pure success. That is called pure happiness. That is what makes them smile and it's what makes me smile. But that is not everybody's story.

Josh in Africa

This photo is taken at the same school in the same village. I watched these two brothers sit and hold each other while they watched their 16-year-old brother go to school. It fascinated them, it fascinated me, and it gave me a bittersweet taste. Their eyes shone with pride as they watched their brother get an education, play soccer with his friends, and get fresh water from the tap. They knew that instead of herding cattle for the rest of his life their brother would become something, and he would bring pride and success to his family and village. On one hand I was happy to see them fill up with pride. On the other, I wondered why couldn't they get the same chance. Shouldn't every child get the chance to go to school, fulfill his or her dreams? Be successful? Go somewhere? This has to change.

Josh in Africa

Driving along the roads of the Masai Mara, everybody waves to you. All the younger children chased after our land rover. Some kids yell out asking for sweets, and some just stare. At first we thought it must be because we are tourists, or we're white, or just because we are different in so many ways. Eventually we realized the real reason for all the attention. All these people we were passing know who we are, and what we are doing for them. Everyone of all ages knows who is, and that they are the ones providing them with schools, hospitals, clean water, and more. They are so grateful for what we do, they can't suppress a smile or a wave as we pass by. People helping people, It's a beautiful thing. Really.

Josh in Africa

Some may argue that the strongest people in Africa are the Maasai warriors, the guardians of their communities and livestock. In many cases this is true, but from what I witnessed while traveling around the Masai Mara, at heart, the mamas are true, strong warriors as well. They carry fifty-pound barrels of water to their homes, sometimes walking miles, multiple times a day, sometimes carrying their children on their back! Did I mention the water is completely unsafe? Imagine this was your reality. If you wanted to give your family water you had to walk miles for unclean water. Then, if a family member gets sick from it, mama must stay home to take care, leaving nobody to get the water. A very vicious cycle. In my mind and my heart these women are warriors, even champions.

Josh in Africa

Driving through Kenya, I love seeing all the different people herding their cattle. It makes me wonder ... where did they come from? Greener pastures? Not so green pastures? How far did they walk? So many untold stories from people with so much to say. So many things encountered, and most importantly, so many things stored in their heads that we should learn.

Click here to learn about my dream...

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