by Stacy Harris on 05/16/14
It was a long and hot week for the FICCS team which included Dr. Patel, Caroline Farella, RN, Mike Cutler, Medtronic, Raju Arvindar, Advocate Medical, Shriya Patel and Aria Mehta, both sponsoring a counseling program for the girls.
We also visited Nasha (pictured above with team), an 18 year old Maasai girl who has been on a FICCS scholarship for 3 years. Having graduated from 8th grade with no job prospects and her father fearing she will get pregnant. Nasha was being prepared, as most Maasai girls are, to be married off for a bridal fee.
However, after consulting with the father, he has agreed that FICCS will train Nasha in Nairobi for 6 months and send her back home with the prospects of making money for the family with her new skills, which will include sewing. life skills, customer service, cooking and computers. Moreover, FICCS has added 5 new girls scholarships, in addition to the 10 existing scholarships, to help keep these precious Maasai girls from being married off as early as age 13.
"The family cannot be a family without the women. We thank you (FICCS) because you have raised us women to a new level. We have seen the fruits of FICCS (scholarships, micro-finance, food and medicines). I sold all my cattle (due to drought) to send my children to school. I am a widow and have no one to support me."
Chairlady, Illirimosho Women's Group (Pictured below)
The team provided CPR training, cardiologist training, biomedical engineer training and EAD training in addition to 8 successful charity cardiac catheterization procedures at Kenyatta National Hospital in Nairobi. Dr. Patel and his team also donated 10 pacemakers, medical equipment, medical books, medicines and medical supplies to Kenyatta Hospital and our partner programs.
The trip was highlighted by a visit to CHDF - Compassionate Hands for the Disabled Foundation, located on the outskirts of Nairobi. This home caters to nearly 40 severely handicapped children who have serious medical conditions. Handicapped children in Africa are generally abandoned and left to die because most cannot care for the child, plus there are tribal taboos which include curses, shame and a belief that it is a punishment from God. This is where Miracles Happen!
Special thanks to Medtronic Foundation for the continued medical support and we are proud to announce the opening of our new women's center designed to provide a safe place for young women and girls to learn, develop and just be themselves. More information about our upgraded health training program and women's center coming soon!
This is a magnificent view of the Shompole Group Ranch Community where Nasha and the Maasai Ma Ma's live.