Monday, 8.30 AM, Kenya. We are pretty sure that our colleagues in Berlin and Bremen, who are two hours behind us, are still asleep. Five Boda-Bodas, their drivers in yellow safety vests, are waiting for us in front of Mbuyu Beach. They’re ready to take our team – seven adults, one child – to Nice View.
John, head of teaching staff, gives us a warm welcome. A welcome that is so affectionate and grateful that we are truly moved. We meet the teachers who will be with the project groups, fill in the press badges, sort through the t-shirts with “Nice View Reporter” prints… and then, finally, we meet the students.
Underneath a mango tree. They arrive walking in line, beaming Bernhard leading the way. At first, they are super shy. But before long, that’ll change – also due to Felix’s previously unknown entertainer skills.
Equipped with the necessary credentials – t-shirts and press badge – they are ready to start acquiring the theoretical knowledge and preparing their first mission. With Melanie and Ralf, the students talk about how to tell stories and on how to come up with interesting questions. Next, Maria and Benny give them an introduction to photography and image composition. Talking to the children, we are impressed. We have learned that Kwale County, where Msambwesi is located, is among the poorest of Kenya’s 47 counties. Yet, the students are confident about their futures – they want to be lawyers, pilots, engineers, and doctors. Amazing.
After lunch, we hand out the technical equipment and the groups are on their way to collect their first stories. The students discover how they are doing as photojournalist or interviewers – equipped with the phones and the tablets that we received as donations for our projects.
They’re doing great! By early afternoon, Team Kitchen, working on the topic “food”, has already added the first story to the blog. The group of younger kids, working on the topic “professions” has already interviewed their teacher Abdalla, taken many pictures, and has cropped and uploaded an entire portrait gallery. Team Farm, working on “economy and trade” has almost finished their story as well. With these impressive results, we call it a day – already looking forward to the next one.