You are about to embark upon an incredible journey. Although the settings are in East Africa and the Horn of Africa, the journey really takes place in our minds and our hearts.
The individuals and groups highlighted in this book have accomplished goals that, on the surface, look difficult or impossible to achieve, especially given the dire circumstances many of them were up against. But they used what they had to achieve great things for themselves, their families, communities, and world. “Great” encompasses everything from being named Nobel Peace Prize recipient to refusing to give up in the midst of danger.
The essence of their trials and triumphs can teach us profound lessons for our own lives. Make the most of what you’ve got: recognize the potential that surrounds you and do the best you can with it. Don’t be afraid to implement simple but brilliant ideas. All efforts, great and small, build upon each other and change the world, from the bottom up.
We can relate to the struggle of breaking out of the confines of our various limitations to become part of the vast potential that has been laid out for us. We become aware of the people placed in our lives to support us on our journeys.
I met the people featured in this book during my 12 years as a freelance print, radio and TV journalist based in Nairobi, Kenya, from 2000 to 2012. The vignettes are grouped into four key thematic actions: fighting poverty; protecting the environment; ensuring food security; and coping with war during and after the conflict.
With few exceptions, the statistics and other information I cite are of the time period of when I met those I’m profiling. I’m aiming to capture a specific moment in their history from which we all can not only adjust the lens through which we view Africa, but hopefully obtain the inspiration, encouragement, and direction we need to overcome challenges in our own lives.
So, sit back, relax, and enjoy the journey!