By Willis Omondi - Kenya's WAIT Director
Kenya’s WAIT outreach programs are continually uplifting and encouraging others, The WAIT clubs are growing, and we are building momentum as we move forward.
The impact of WAIT programs have been dramatic and beyond our expectations.WAIT Team members are leading the way in advancing the vision, mission and work of WAIF, especially through the School programs under the WAIT leadership.
I went to different schools in the Month of January, meeting with Principals and Headteachers to discuss the possibility of Introducing WAIT programs in schools. The month of February began with several preparations and arrangements towards achieving these outreach programs.
As planned, we had the first program on the 21st of February 2009 at Konza A.B.C. Secondary School, situated about 400KM from the Capital City. We left Nairobi at around 7AM as a Team consisting of 2 Ladies (Beryl Williams and Lynda Agwallah) and 2 Gentlemen (Gerald Ondiek and Kiprotich) under the Leadership of Willis.
Because of transportation difficulties, it took us 6 hrs to finally arrive at our destination. Luckily, we managed to make it on time. We had a pleasing reception at the school.The Principal, the deputy Principal, and the staff were present upon our arrival, and were very welcoming.
Our program started at 12:30PM and we were very encouraged, as we had an audience of 300 students who were all very attentive during the WAIT presentation, which was given by Willis. The actual aim of this outreach program was to educate the students on HIV/AIDS facts, as well as the formation of a WAIT club within the School. Willis started the program by giving the history of WAIT, followed by a presentation on HIV/AIDS Facts. The lecture took about 1 hour and the audience were encouraged to ask questions.
Objectives of the HIV/AIDS Presentation
As explained in the School Lesson Plan of the WAIT Team, Willis focused on the following objectives.
Provide students with the basic facts on HIV/AIDS
Raise awareness of HIV/AIDS, its modes of transmission and its effects on health, life and society
Inform them on the various and most effectives way of preventing the infection
The Birth of a New WAIT Club
During the afternoon presentation, we focused on the formation of a WAIT club within the school as this would help in future programs and keep the spirit of WAIT in the school.
Willis started by introducing the WAIT rules and standards, and then elected the representatives of the WAIT club, including the patron--who in this case would represent the parent figure, as stated in the WAIT structure. The Patron of the club would be the Deputy Principal. He accepted the challenge and promised to do his best for the club.
This team would become the foundation for all the WAIT activities within the school and they would uphold the WAIT guidelines as they recruit more membership. The school environment is very friendly and it is our hope and determination that the journey of WAIT has only just begun in this school. Even the students were very inspired by the WAIT work and promised to maintain the club.
There was a video presentation (Jump and Full WAIT Performance, respectively) followed by a time for each WAIT member to give a short testimony. Students followed up with a video presentation from a laptop. Even though the laptop was very small, we managed to at least show the videos. The WAIT team members gave an inspiring health talk and then we had an interactive question and answer session. We ended with a dance to inspire the students, then Willis gave a word of thanks. The program ended with a word of prayer from the Head Girl.