The situation in Kenya is getting worse, and we can help bring it to a quicker end. I know from past associations with Amnesty International that when the world’s attention is directed to governments they listen, because too much is at stake for them to NOT listen when their actions are known and are being watched by many.
Dr. Robert Barasa, executive director of the Ember Kenya Grandparents Empowerment Project, says that in Funyula, where the Ember Project is located, he has been warned that the building in which the Ember offices are located is targeted for burning down because the landlord is Kikuyu. Also, all businesses are shut down and nobody can go out in public to work or to get food because the danger is too great. He says that people cannot get food and are in danger of starving.
I know from my trip to Funyula in September that the Ember participants are extremely poor and live a hand to mouth existence day by day. If they cannot walk distances to get water and food, they will suffer greatly and are probably doing so now. To find out more about the Ember people in Funyula, please go to http://www.gettingtomaybe.com/ember/. Believe me, these people are good, kind, intelligent people just like us, but who are caught up in a system where they are so consumed with surviving each day, that they have little energy left to look beyond just keeping their families alive. When hope for change through this election was taken from them, riots ensued.
The Ember Kenya Grandparents Empowerment Project participants and, indeed, all the rest of Kenya need our help. This is what we can do:
Â· Write or send an email to your Senators and Representatives. You can find out who they are at this web address: http://www.usa.gov/Contact/Elected.shtml
Â· Write or send an email to President Mwai Kibaki himself. [email protected]
Â· Go to the Kenya Statehouse webpage and send an email to anyone else that seems appropriate. The Statehouse is the equivalent of our White House. If we flood them with our concerns for their country, they must listen! http://www.statehousekenya.go.ke/
Â· Send an email to Amnesty International and ask them to use their network to get involved: http://www.amnesty.org/en/contact
Â· In your own words, ask the recipients to support an independent investigation of the election results in Kenya. The election results were exceptionally close and there is ample evidence of rigging so this must be investigated. Emphasize that a trusted independant investigation may help to stem the escalating rioting where, to date, more than 300 people have lost their lives and countless more have been injured.
That’s all you have to do. A flood of emails and letters from individuals especially to the people at the Kenya Statehouse will tell them that the United States and the world is watching.
Please do this right now before you move on to other concerns in your life. These people really need our help!
Please forward this to everyone whom you think will also help the people of Ember. Thank you so much.
Ruth Zekowski is a member of the U.S. Advisory Board, Ember Kenya Grandparents Empowerment Project: [email protected]