This past weekend, I had the wonderful honor of traveling with Daylight student, Pembe, back to East Pokot to visit his mother.
Three years ago, Michael Kimpur and I first met Pembe and his mother while visiting a Daylight partner in East Pokot. When Pembe’s mother heard about Daylight, she cried tears of joy and said she had been praying that God would give Pembe a better life ever since he became physically disabled as a baby during a raid on their homestead.
It took us 9 hours to drive the rocky, desert terrain of 200 miles to the village nearest Pembe’s family.
We slept at the home of a Daylight Kenya partner and then woke the next morning to drive to the watering hole where local government officials said Pembe’s family watered their animals.
Because Pembe’s family is nomadic-moving frequently to find water and feed their animals-I was utilized (as the only white person around) as a signal to the community that Pembe was here and to send word to his family!
Within an hour, Pembe’s sister came to greet him. As the temperature rose above 100 degrees, we moved to a nearby tree for shade. There, another sister and a brother came to greet him as well as many community members who were interested to see how school faired with Pembe.
Pembe and I wrote the alphabet and words in the sand with a stick to demonstrate what he has been learning.
Then finally, his mother arrived. I saw her approaching from a distance and managed to capture the first few moments of their meeting.
Later, Pembe’s father presented me with a goat, a gift thanking Daylight for taking such good care of his son and providing him with education, something he could not do for his son.
Pembe actually was really confused and thought we were leaving him with his family and not bringing him back to school. He started crying! His mother was so moved by his reaction about school and was so happy to see he is doing well.
It was such a long and hard journey to East Pokot, but I am so grateful to have been part of this reunion. These moments serve as a precious reminder of the important work Daylight is doing to provide education to children affected by cattle rustling.
I’m excited to return to the U.S. in a few days with more stories to share with you of other students like Pembe at Daylight.
U.S. Director of Operations
Daylight Center and School