Dancing Like a Child

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We had the privilege of having Drew Holcomb of Drew Holcomb and the Neighbors join Blood:Water on a Vision Trip to Kenya. This post details one of his experiences there.

A few weeks ago I was in the desert in northern Kenya dancing like a child in a crowd full of children. These young students, and the women in their village, were hosting us at their local school, a beacon of light in the midst of the driest, barest, most ruthless place I have ever seen in my 31 years. They wrote songs of welcome and songs of brotherhood and sang them to our small group. At the heart of their songs was a simple message: Welcome. 

I was there with Blood:Water, an organization that partners with Africans who are doing amazing work in providing clean water, sanitation, HIV/AIDS care, and other essential health and education services to communities who previously lived far away from any access to these services. We were welcomed to two different clinics where HIV/AIDS testing and care has brought people from the brink of death to fruitful and community filled lives. We were welcomed into schools where children come from five to eight miles away barefoot in the desert to get an education and drink clean well water, with hope and promise in their eyes. We were welcomed by a community whose lake, and only source of water, was drained when the earthen dam busted. They welcomed us as a new dam was being constructed and their community was again going to have access to the very water that brings them life.

Over and over again, we heard the word “Welcome” as they proudly invited us into their world, a simpler, harder, and starker world than the one I left behind in Tennessee, but a world full of humanity, full of hope, full of smiles, full of stories, full of promise. The work of Blood:Water is the work of partnership, where we westerners humbly offer our cooperative energies to those who are already addressing these water and health issues in their own communities.

Blood:Water says they are partnering with Africa to end the HIV/AIDS and water crises. When I was dancing with these children in Logo Logo, in the desert, it was a wonderful cooperation. They were teaching me their dance, smiling toward one another, me clumsily learning the steps, just hoping to be a part of their movement toward a better community, a more healthy community, a more cooperative community.

-Drew Holcomb Blood:Water Artist Advocate & Lead Singer of Drew Holcomb and the Neighbors