Raphael and Jane Khayimba welcomed me to their home in Western Kenya 30 years ago, when I was 22. They were my in-country hosts for the year I lived there, teaching in a local school. They are kind, generous and deeply loving people. You can probably see that in this photo below, taken when I went back to visit them 25 years later (carrying Oregon t-shirts for the whole family!). Raphael and Jane have managed to pay to send all of their children to school, which is amazing given their limited means.
Like most families in Western Kenya, they live off of small parcels of land. Not much has changed since 1987. Their home does not have running water. There is little money for anything other than day-to-day living expenses.
Luckily, the one thing that has changed is communication. One month ago, the Khayimba family called me over FaceTime. We saw each other! I am proud to say my namesake -- Catherine Khayimba -- their 24-year-old daughter -- is teaching her parents about technology. I am so glad to be back in touch with them, and so glad they reached out to me to support them at this time.
They gave so much to me, so many years ago. I'd like to ask you to help me give back to them. No amount is too small. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.
Me with Jane and Raphael Khayimba (photo by Jinx Faulkner)2012: All of us in the Khayimba home, looking at old photos of ourselves from 1987
Raphael and I greeting each other after 25 years.
Below are photos taken in 1987, when I lived in a mud hut on the Khayimba family compound and taught at a local school.
Lufina and I getting ready for a photo shoot : )
Raphael and Jane Khayimba, 1987
A gaggle of "my girls" in front of my home
Lufina, Jane Wamboi and me
- kathleen Roy
- Margaret Hunt
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