June 2, 2017

Pete & Libby Halestrap

“Coming from the green, leafy and often-extremely-wet UK has meant I never appreciated what it is like to live without a source of water. The rain was often seen as something to be endured, taps never ran dry and even restrictions in water use were not common. Here in Kenya, and indeed much of Africa, it is quite a different story of course. After the November rains hardly materialised in Kenya the country quickly began to suffer under the weight of disrupted planting routines, failed crops and dry rivers. In February the president officially declared the drought as a national disaster and appealed for international aid, and in March it was suggested that as many as four million Kenyans were facing famine conditions. Indeed colleagues based in the northern part of the country reported huge loss of livestock, dry wells and a growing desperation. Here in temperate Kijabe we did not see devastation of the drought quite so acutely, but we were still very aware of failing crops, rapidly rising food prices, low water supplies and the growing anxiety of those who were desperate to begin planting but couldn’t risk doing so whilst the ground was so dry. And so, when the rain finally began to fall a few weeks ago, there was celebration and overwhelming thankfulness. Even the earth seemed to breathe a sigh of relief as the dry, cracked and dusty ground received its fill. We saw hope and anticipation and thankfulness, and now, as the rains persist weeks later, we continue to learn to nurture a heart of gratitude.” Praise God for the rain that has fallen, but continue to pray for more and for those who have already suffered greatly during this drought.”

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