Tuesday, August 9, 2011

American Moms Working with Mothers in Africa

black mothers, black women, african american women

by Ayvaunn Penn, Your Black World

For those mothers who love their little ones, the affection they shed on their children connects them to mothers across the world. That is what the ten American mothers — including African-American mom Karen Walrond — learned on their trip to Kenya. This group of mommy bloggers is a part of the ONE campaign. The mission of their trip was to be able to share with the moms in the U.S. what moms in Kenya face with challenges such as HIV, malaria, and famine.

According to reports from Rollingout.com, “The 10 Americans traveled to remote regions helping community organizations and relief workers conduct the daily business of treating and preventing infectious diseases and staving off poverty.” While offering their helping hands, the American mothers discovered that despite their different cultural backgrounds, they share more similarities with the African mothers than differences. Jyl Pattel, one of the bloggers said that when she asked one of the Kenyan moms what her greatest challenge was, she thought she would respond saying that it was keeping her kids alive. To Pattel’s surprise, the woman responded saying “Raising good children” — the same thing Pattel often concerned herself with.

Amy Graff, another blogger, shared onBabyCenter.com the story of how she so desperately hoped that a Kenyan mother’s children would not test positive for HIV. She wrote, “All I could think was, ‘Please don’t be positive. Please don’t be positive. As we waited for the results of an HIV test given to two children, ages 3 and 5, I was terrified… Then second lines ran across the [test] strips. My heart sank.” No matter where a mother is from, she never wants to see children — hers or not — suffer.

In Walrond’s take on the trip to Africa she stated,  “It was such an honor to travel with ONE to see how the organizations for which they advocate are doing incredible work supporting the people of Kenya as the country overcomes its challenges and flourishes. This was a trip of a lifetime, and one that I will never, ever forget.”

Ayvaunn Penn is the founder of Your Black Poets and an award winning writer completing her degree in English and philosophy. To inquire about her freelance editing services, click here. To like Ayvaunn on Facebook, click here.

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