"Voluntourism Journey to Kenya" Letter
We would love to get to know you better …
Won’t you join us on a Voluntourism Journey to Kenya !
September 29 – October 9, 2012
and I will leave from Chicago on Friday, September 28 and land in
Nairobi on Saturday, the 29th. The 10-day experience will end on
October 9 when many of us will fly back to the States.
Will you prayerfully consider whether this opportunity is God’s idea for you?
voluntourism program, a careful balance of focused tourism and hands-on
interaction with our African friends, is open for registration. We are
looking for men and women who can contribute their skills to the
on-going growth of Global Bag Project Kenya. If you have any of the below skills, we would welcome your help.
• Experience with the tourism industry
• Sewing expertise
• Marketing ideas
• Fundraising experience
• A background in business; entrepreneurial instincts; marketing ideas
• Simple construction abilities
• Love of shopping (particularly in tourist markets!)
• Previous exposure in developing countries
• Pragmatic problem-solving capabilities
• Relational gifts
• Joy about cross-cultural diversity
• Writing, social networking, and/or photography skill-sets
Global Bag Project workers in Kenya are widows with HIV/AIDS or single
mothers without husbands to help them raise their children. We cannot
emphasize how important it is for compassionate men to come alongside
our friends and demonstrate concern and support in tangible ways.
Global Bag Project seamstresses in Kibera slums
Global Bag Project seamstresses at Africa Int'l University
will be housed in the beautiful Kijiji guest houses at Africa
International University (in the suburb of Karen outside Nairobi) where
GBP Kenya has friends, an office and a sewing room. We’ll take most of
our meals on campus in the Kijiji dining room. This will allow us
optimum time to meet and get to know our African colleagues on the
campus grounds and in the nearby Kibera Slums and to do volunteer work
at this site.
Kijiji Guest House
The tourism part of our journey will include:
long-established development projects such as Amani Ya Juu (the mother
of all sewing centers starting with a handful of refugees now employing
over 80 workers). Kazuri Beads, begun by Englishwoman Susan Woods over
30 years ago, which now employs over 300 workers and ships products all
over the world. We will visit the artist colony at Kitengela Glass
where the motto is “Nothing Is Wasted” (it certainly isn’t). This is a
visually stunning experience. Trust us!
Kitengela Glass Artist Colony Art
Imaginative building on Kitengela compound
toss in some history—tea at Lake Naivasha Country Club in the Rift
Valley for a taste of British Colonialism, lunch at a working tea farm
beneath the Ngong Hills, and end with a two-day, two-night safari in
the Maasai Mara during the remarkable migration season as thousands of
zebra and wildebeests migrate back to the Serengeti in Tanzania.
Believe us, this is a sight to behold, and for some, a
On safari in Nairobi, Kenya—spotting lions
The Serena Safari Lodge
The volunteer part of the journey will include:
“Flipping” houses for a couple of seamstresses who need a little
neighborly help; this will entail simple improvements to make a few
homes more habitable for these families.
- Making décor
improvements in some of the guest rooms in Kijiji. This will entail
hands-on work, shopping in the roadside markets for furniture upgrades
and decorations, and paying to have the rooms repainted. Year-round
guests who stay at Kijiji often buy bag products from the curio shop or
- Working in the sewing rooms to create new bag
product prototypes and teaching additional sewing skills that need to
- Attending church at Nairobi Chapel.
- Shopping for fabrics in the Somali fabric market or in the tourist markets for sewing projects.
The sewing room in Amani Ya Juu
Tent Church at Nairobi Chapel
The Somali fabric market
Cost of the trip:
land fee, not including airfare. This is a high-end fee, including
costs for the safari, and a stipend (which you will be receipted for as
a donation) to capitalize buying fabrics, contributing to emergency
funds, purchasing sewing machines, and purchasing décor for the Kijii
guest-house rooms. We are negotiating an alternate safari event, hoping
to reduce the fee by around $1000.
Registering for the trip:
you wish to join us, we need you to inform us by April. This intent
requires a $500 down-payment. If you choose to cancel, the $500 can
only be returned if you cancel by August 15. After that date,
down-payments will have been made to venders, and refunds will
unfortunately not be possible. After April, we will make air-travel
plans in case there is a group that wants to leave and return to
Our voluntourism journey will actually begin in May with twice-monthly conference training calls.
This way you will be acquainted and informed before landing in Kenya.
you register, we will send detailed information, a firm list of
recommended reading, further explanation about the donation stipend
included in your fee, alternate safari event to cut costs, Web links
for doing your own research (all the necessary travel information that
comes with a journey of this kind—vaccinations, visas, etc.).
Karen Mains via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or our Mainstay
Ministries office phone (for further questions and a live voice) at 630-293-4500. Checks can be made payable to Global Bag Project and mailed to Box 30, Wheaton, IL 60187.
I can’t think of anything more wonderful than including people we love in this exciting, high-impact growth event.
David and Karen Mains
The Soulish Food e-mails are
posted biweekly on the Hungry Souls Web
site. Newcomers can look that over and decide if they want to
register on the Web site to receive the biweekly newsletter. You might
want to recommend this to friends also. They can go to www.HungrySouls.org.
“Will you prayerfully consider whether this opportunity is God’s idea for you?”