Christy Wells grew up in Stanton Prior, a small village in Somerset. He is a final year student of biological sciences in Exeter and attends St. Leonard’s Church (a supporter of REAP). He had previously travelled to Kenya to visit friends and helped on a game lodge in Laikipia county. He had never been as far west as Kisumu and was interested in getting insight into Luo culture.
Why did you decide to visit the REAP farm in Kenya?
My belief in Jesus Christ motivated me to visit Kisumu. I spent 4 weeks volunteering in Kisumu in the Summer of 2019. I hoped that my visit would be an encouragement to REAP and I hoped to learn from them.
Which parts of REAP’s work did you see and help with?
I spent most of my time helping in the garden, helping REAP prepare for the Kisumu show. I also visited some local farms, churches and a local school. During my stay, I was kindly looked after by Rosalia and spent time with Pastor George. REAP’s work with natural medicines greatly fascinated me and I am currently writing a dissertation on A. annua (one of the herbs promoted). The whole experience was a steep learning curve.
It was a great privilege to meet with friends, brothers and sisters from a completely different culture and to share together in the same great truth that is in Christ. I was greatly blessed with many interesting and thought-provoking conversations, helping me to understand some of the challenges faced in Kisumu.
What did you learn during your visit?
It is too difficult to distil my experience into a single thing that I learned. However, here are some things that stand out:
- Seeing REAP’s success in helping farmers farm better and manage what they have was an eye-opener.
- Getting to know a new culture was also an interesting learning experience and one which will be long remembered.
- The problems that are faced in Kisumu often seem rawer than those we face in the UK. We have been blessed with an abundance of all the basics that can be hard to come by in Kisumu. However, it is clear that we both face the one, same problem (often manifested in different ways) and that problem is the sinfulness of the human heart. To travel across the world and be able to see many saved by the same God from the same human condition by the same good news about Jesus Christ is a great encouragement.
- To see the work that the Lord is doing through His church in Kisumu is very exciting.
I would encourage anyone reading this to keep praying for Kisumu; that Christ would continue to build His church and the gospel would keep being preached.