Saturday, July 30, 2011

Imani Workshops

One of the great things about the AMPATH program is that it provides not only medical care, but also social support for their HIV positive patients.  For patients in rural settings the social support comes in the form of paid work on a farm that grows food for other HIV+ patients.  In the urban setting, there are several opportunities including a craft workshop called Imani.  Imani workshop was established during our first trip to Eldoret by two of our favorite artists - Barb Zech and Peter Rose.

Since I had never been to the workshop in the five trips that I've taken to Eldoret (quite embarassing), we decided that we had to make a visit this time.  We organized an afternoon trip with Angie and two of our most favorite-est new friends from Kenya.  Elise and Jason.  Elise is a medicine resident from IU going into infectious disease, which is good because her laugh and sense of humor are both infections that Lisa and I are still trying to recover from!


Jason is a medicine/psychiatry resident from Duke, who is my new bro-friend.  Jason made a big committment to Kenya - almost 10 weeks of solid rotation time.  He's officially one of my biggest heros as he's doing a palliative medicine fellowship after residency.  I certainly hope that he can talk his wife into more trips to Eldoret because palliative medicine is certainly an area of need in Kenya.

The workshop produces quite a few products including paper, bead work, ceramics, art, and tailoring.  It was great to see how the products that we've bought so many times in the past are made.   We'll leave you with a few pics from our visit.

Stringing beads

Pounding recycled paper into pulp

Dying and screening the paper pulp

Some of the colorful ceramic beads

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