New Insights

We were all impacted greatly by the jiggers treatment sponsored by WE-CAN on our last day in Kenya. This flea caused skin eating disease has been eradicated in some African countries but is still prevalent in particularly poor, red dirt areas of Kenya. This village of Mukangu is very impoverished where people don’t have even enough for one meal a day. It’s a vicious cycle – due to the disease kids do poorly in school or don’t attend, adults are unable to work, people can’t afford the basic sanitation and hygiene techniques, shoes, and concrete floors that would prevent infection or reinfection. Here again, Regina pointed out women’s empowerment would make a big difference in women taking charge of the disease in their families. We were particularly impressed by the university students and WE-CAN volunteers who treated those affected, and later went to their homes to fumigate them. WE-CAN will return to offer and reinforce training on basic sanitation and hygiene. It seems so simple – daily soap and water on the feet, wearing shoes, better floors, and Vaseline on the feet at night. But this is a long term systemic problem. Our partner in Kenya are making an important difference. 

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