Life Of Kenya Elementary School Child
James Otieno, age seven, says he used to go to primary school but hunger forced him to abandon education in order to help his mother who is a fishmonger. “I cannot go to school on an empty stomach because I will not concentrate,” he says, and then helps his mother before having some time to play in the dirt with some friends. Helen tells reporter Harold Ayodo, that “I stopped going to school because mummy said there is no food in our house.” Victor joins the group and they sing the only nursery rhyme they recall from their brief time in school, Baba Black Sheep.
Six years after Kenya introduced free primary education, over 1.5 million children are not in school. The government attempts to feed children but its efforts fall far short of the mark. As grain increasingly is used to produce fuel, its price rises and nations such as Kenya are more seriously impacted than people living in the industralized world. Mrs. Grace Omogo, who has eight children, admits they can not attend school due to the rising cost of maize and she needs every hand available to make ends meet.
In discussions about education, those living in the industralized world tend to ignore the reality that to attend school a child needs a full stomach. There are opportunities for children in the United States to become engaged in sponsoring children in nations like Kenya, and this support begins by raising money to pay for breakfast or lunch.
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