For those of you who have been on this journey with me for many years, the word “Turkana” may ring a familiar bell. If you begin thinking about something to do with Kenya, you’d be right on the money! Turkana is a region in the Northern part of Kenya. It is mainly desert, with one major town, Lodwar, that operates as its hub. CMF has a missionary team that lives and works there, and Missions of Hope partners with several ministries in that region. When I lived in Nairobi and worked at Missions of Hope, I made several trips to Turkana, and Lodwar specifically, to work with the microfinance groups located there.
In any case, as microfinance continues to take root in the region, some CMF missionaries and Turkana folk became interested in the VSL model we are using here in Malawi. It looks very different from the model Missions of Hope uses, and is geared more towards rural farmers, which is what Turkana is predominantly made up of. Therefore, one of the CMF missionaries there reached out to our team a few months ago, asking to bring some guys down to learn what our microfinance model looks like, and to see if it may be a good fit for Turkana.
Yesterday, five guys arrived here in Blantyre, one missionary and four Turkana. They are spending the week with us, learning about Malawi and the VSL programs we use here. It is a wonderful clash of spheres for me, as the Kenya that I know and love finds itself in my new ministry. It will be a great week connecting with these guys, dusting off the Swahili, and remembering the ministries in Kenya.