This Time for Africa

It’s been a few weeks since the last time I have talked to you guys so I thought I would give you guys a little update on all things Africa.

There have been lots of emails going back and forth, samples being sent to the seamstress, final decisions being made, and lots of talk of excitement as we are down to just 23 days until we get on the plane for our long trip to Kigali. We have gotten a couple videos of the ladies that we can’t wait to share with you guys! Also, with the videos, we got some photos of several of the ladies. Seeing the women’s faces makes this all so real, we are really traveling across the world, we are really taking two weeks of our lives to change theirs. I have never been in their shoes, my life has never been at risk, I have never been without the necessities of our day to day lives, in fact, I haven’t even gone a day with ONLY the necessities. But these woman have, they have moved from place to place seeking safety, they have lost loved ones because of violence, they have had to face days not knowing if there would be food to feed their families. The work we bring them will not take all of these past struggles away, but it will give them the money they need to provide for their families. I also hope to bring these women a sense of pride. Pride in the fact that they made it through their tailoring program and pride in their work that we are so excited to share with you guys!


This will be my second trip with MJC. My first was to Chicago to visit one of our seamstresses for Platinum. That trip was a lot of fun, it was just me, Desi, David, Kayla, and one of our summer interns at the time (“Sophie Kayla”). We have so many memories from that one day trip so (this is also the day Desi and I became true friends…love that girl!), I can only imagine how many more I will have from this two week journey! I am pretty excited to get to hang out with Kayla and Alicia for those two weeks. I don’t get to spend much time with them- they stay pretty busy in the office, and we are always busy in Platinum! So having time to work one on one with them and also just getting to know them will be a new and  exciting experience.

The three of us all got notebooks to write in during our trip and I plan on writing down as much as I can. I also plan on taking tons of photos that I will be sure to share with you guys when we get back! I really don’t know what to expect but I do hope to get a lot out of this trip. I hope to fall in love with all the women, learn as much as I can about their culture and lives, and makes as many memories as possible. And obviously to teach them how to sew all the items…our whole reason for going! I am sure this trip with be unforgettable and I can’t wait for this whole journey to begin!


Thank you to those who have and continue to supported our trip!


P.S. I watched Hotel Rwanda last weekend and I was told it was going to scare me out of going, and while it was the saddest movie I have ever seen, (if I was a crier I would have definitely been in tears) I am still excited and anxious to go!


ALSO, I am working on an “Africa Playlist” to listen to on our way there…any ideas? So for I only have two songs, “Africa” by Toto and “This time for Africa/Waka Waka” by Shakira…I really LOVE both songs, don’t judge!  : )




Joy pine - April 12, 2012 - 8:17 pm

And definitely add hakuna matata to your list:-)

Joy Pine - April 12, 2012 - 8:14 pm

I am so very excited for you guys! Be prepared for a life changing journey! I go to Kenya a couple of times a year and each time I am blessed beyond measure by the women that I work with, the children I see and the patients that I touch. Their hope and happiness with the little that they have will truly put things into perspective. I am so grateful for the work that you are giving to these ladies!! This is soo huge for them!!
May God bless you in your travels and your efforts!
Joy Pine

Carrie Plummer - April 12, 2012 - 8:45 am

What a wonderful adventure you have in front of you! Okay, playlist suggestions. Speaking of not judging, some of these come from the Wild Thornberrys movie soundtrack but they are such happy songs. Motla Le Pula (The Rainmaker) by Hugh Masekela, Africa (Ila Re Waisco) by Las Hijas Del Soul and Awa Awa by WES. Here’s more: You Can Run from Seun Kuti has a great non-traditional Africa vibe. Wavin Flag by K’naan was also an anthem for the World Cup and it is awesome in every way! (Dare you not to wave your arms.)

Mindy - April 12, 2012 - 6:43 am

We are the World and The Lion Sleeps Tonight

Courtney Puhl - April 11, 2012 - 8:11 pm

Paul Simon’s Graceland album (recorded in South Africa ) is one of my all time favorites! You really should check it out!

Jill L. - April 11, 2012 - 7:04 pm

Kiara, I’m so happy you have the opportunity to go with Africa and work with these women. I’m sure it’ll be life changing!

Nicole K. - April 11, 2012 - 5:59 pm

I love the music from “Out of Africa”-you can download the soundtrack-it is so beautiful and it reflects the majestic beauty of Africa.
I listened to it on my headphones as we flew on puddle jumpers in Kenya. Looking out the plane at the landscape.

There is so much history, very Horrific history in Rwanda-these people have been to hell and back..but what a amazing recovery they have made! I have read up on the Rwanda Genocide a ton and am just amazed on how well they have done 10 years later. Wishing you the most amazing trip ever! It will be a trip you will never forget.
And if you’re like me…Africa will get in your blood-and you will always want to go back!!!

Sarah Smolen - April 11, 2012 - 5:51 pm

Here is one of my favorite songs by Paul Simon, you might like it: Under African Skies
I know it’s old school….I’m not even a big P. Simon fan, but I like this one 🙂

ann - April 11, 2012 - 5:12 pm

we just got back from a trip close to around teh world africa including nigeria and morrocco are absolutely beautiful eat the food but dont drink the water.

Gran - April 11, 2012 - 4:51 pm

Kiara, it is great to feel your excitement. Thinking of you.

Angie B - April 11, 2012 - 2:37 pm

“Leaving on a jet plane”, Songs from Lion King and Tarzan. Micheal Jackson “Heal the World”, “Pray Africa pray” by Pieter Mckarthy.

You should throw in some music that is popular in Africa.

have fun!