Four years past, our founder and Executive Director, Loyce Ong'udi, asked the Mwanzo Board to add a Mwanzo Education Center (MEC) student field trip as a line item in our annual budget. It was not so clear then how important going on tour would be for our children and the community. We never realized how big a deal an annual field trip would prove to be for our 200 students and their (mostly) young parents! Sure it's fun to get on tour buses: We can remember that excitement from our own childhood!
In 2014, our schoolchildren were taken across Lake Victoria on a motorized boat to Ndere Island to visit historical sites. The photos said so much! For most of the kids it was the first time in a moving vehicle! As the accompanying parents later reported, the children spontaneously made a song for the bus driver, because they thought he had a special power to move the bus - which brought them so much joy.
In 2015, the children were taken to Snake Park in Kisumu, 20 miles from Rabuor Village, where (most of them) saw 100 year-old turtles, all sorts of snakes, and other reptiles. That in itself is an interesting story, as some of the adults and children closed their eyes when looking at the snakes, our of a fear of black and green mambas, cobras, haunting their dreams. The great news is that their minds were open.
In 2016, Mwanzo sent the students back to Kisumu, for a tour of the airport and the city. Especially the boys were excited by the sight of passenger jets. But the highlight for all was a fantastic "fast food adventure" offering chips, popcorn, and soda. What a day!
In 2017, the schoolchildren went to Impala National Park. While we so value the quality education of a classroom (especially the devotion of our teachers and staff to the students!), nothing beats exposing a child to a new experience that broadens their horizons and allow their minds to wonder and dream.
We thank you, our donors and supporters, for opening doors of opportunity for our schoolchildren and their communities to Dream Big!