Courage and Commitment

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The last time I saw Dorah, at her Senye clinic in Kibera, we discussed the challenges of providing health care in an urban slum. She shared with me her commitment to the community. Today, as we talk about her personal safety and the security of her shop, her commitment speaks for itself.

Kibera has been one of the hardest hit areas in the post-election violence in Kenya. In the last two weeks, Dorah has faced a raid on her clinic by looters, fears for her own safety, and concerns about how to re-stock her supplies until vehicles can reach her. Yet she continues to operate with little disruption.

“We never know what will happen, day to day,” Dorah describes. “But I’ll be here as long as I can be.”

I am struck by two things as I listen to Dorah: 1) She is a remarkably strong, courageous and committed woman, and a reason for hope in the midst of all of this uncertainty. I wonder if I would continue my work, if I were in Dorah’s shoes? 2) There is something to the fact that Dorah is personally invested in Kibera. She doesn’t just work there; she owns a business there. She has something at stake, and she will fight for it. More on this soon.

Parliament is meeting today in Nairobi, and ODM has called for three days of protests, beginning tomorrow. With that comes great uncertainty for all of us in Nairobi, but especially for Dorah and residents of Kibera. “There is a lot of tension here today, we really don’t know what will happen tomorrow,” Dorah says softly. But as images from Parliament appear angry and heated, Dorah, Millicent and other franchisees continue to work with courage and commitment.Dorah in her Senye Clinic

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