One of many amazing children we have met on this journey

One of many amazing children we have met on this journey

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Back in the States and working on the next project

Just arrived back in the states and already busy working on the next two projects. I have been making some design changes to support the increased power requirements to run a remote clinic. Equals3's goal is to only have two very specific designs. One to run our school program and the second to run our clinic program. The school system is working extremely well and we have refined the components and installation process to a point where we can meet 95% of the schools needs. This solution saves money, installation time, and support while still giving a remote school ample power to meet almost all of their requirements! The clinic program is a bit more complicated because of the need to power additional medical equipment. I am busy working with the local development community in Kenya to try and accurately determine what the true clinic requirements are so we can find a way to package a solution similar to how we deliver power to a school. Once we understand that, we can find a way to package a consistent clinic solution so we can build it cheaper, faster, and make it so it can easily be maintained for several clinics. Man...this is fun stuff! John

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Visited Sereliopi school

Took a drive east towards Somalia to visit a Samburu school. Equals3 has agreed to get involved with NRT to assist in projects for the Northern Territory of Kenya. Check out our links page of the website for details on NRT. They are an amazing organization that has the community development skills we require to have success with our projects. The photo is of the village that surrounds the school. I spent about 30 minutes with the head master discussing the challenges of educating a nomadic culture. I continue to learn so much. John
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Saturday, September 10, 2011

Singing Wells of Samburu

Visited the singing wells of Samburu. Tribes have been coming to the wells for generations. The wells can be as deep as seven people depending on the drought. They use cans to hand the water up to each person and they sign songs to alert their specific herds to come to the water. Each family has its own song for their herds. The animals know the family song to come for water. You are not allowed to photograph the Samburu people and the wells. Very limited information exists about the wells because the Samburu wells are very private. The photo is of one of the elders spears which he allowed me to take. John
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Our Samburu Guide

Went for a walk through the lower plains of our camp at Sarara. Being on foot is wonderful because you can engage wildlife at eye level. We had a guide with us that was showing us tracks and explaining sounds and plants. The photo is of our guides assistant who was there is case we stumbled upon an elephant or Leopard.
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Friday, September 9, 2011

Leaving Lewa for Sarara

Heading north for a few days to see the Mathews Range. Heard amazing things about the area and Sarara Camp. We chartered a Sesna 206 for the journey. John
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Thursday, September 8, 2011

Our next project

We site reviewed Equals3's next project. Loborua Clinic which serves several thousand people is located in a Masaii village near our Leparua school project. Power is a critical step for this clinic to attract nurses and doctors. Also the facility needs to have basic lab equipment and refrigeration. This will save many lives. The closest clinic with power is a days walk. This location is perfect for our design and equipment and we are starting now to raise money for a 2012 installation. Your donations will go a long way to making this happen. Please go to our website or click on the donate link on the right. Thank you for all the support. John
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Visited Leparua school

Went back and checked in on Leparua primary school where our first two projects have occurred. Things looked great. The power system is working perfectly and I was able to review data from the system and see how and what they school has been doing. They requested adding another room with lights for additional evening classes. Based on how well they have been managing the power, it is not a problem. The head master was so happy with the news. They will now raise the money for the wiring and lights! It was great to see everything working perfectly and to hear the stories of success from the teachers. John

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Our work is done!

We are heading back to camp from Karimba with the worst ladder ever made. All is good. We heard exciting reports from the teachers via the Lewa community development. They have so many exciting plans for students and parents now that they have electricity. John
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Wednesday, September 7, 2011

An exciting moment

Nathan Muthomi is one of the committee members for education at Karimba school. He was there when we powered on the lights for the first time. He was speechless. He brought is son Jacob over to see the event because Jacob will be one of the first students that will be using the lights for evening preps. Jacob is hoping to get a scholarship to attend high school. Kids only get to study past eighth grade if they have good grades and evening classes will help these children improve their chances. John
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We have power at Karimba

It was long day but we completed everything at Karimba primary school. Because some equipment we purchased in Nairobi was not actually what we requested, we had a few technical issues to resolve that we would not normally face. Some wiring was mismarked and installed wrong so we had to climb back up to the panels and re-wire. The problem was that all we had was a bent 16foot ladder that we would not even allow in the US. With some rope and stupidity I climb up to confirm the error and attempted to correct it. It became clear that I would need a 7ft basketball player to reach the connectors so I had to go with option 2. You guess it. Option 1 was bad so option 2 was worse. I put on protective eye wear and gloves and re-wire hot leads in the junction box to correct the errors above. It worked great. I only got shocked once and had only two small spark events that freaked out everyone. I don't recommend doing this at home but for anyone who knows me option two is no surprise. Several hours later we were up and running with everyone cheering. Over the next month Lewa will be funding more lights and power outlets to run laptops. Now it is time for me to have a few beers! John
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Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Another day another flat tire

We keep getting our exercise changing tires. Another flat cause by tough road conditions. We are out of spare tires now (smile)
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