This post is also available in: Português

Diary of our life in Africa (a report from when we lived for 5 months on an orphanage on the countryside of Kenya)

The last two days were quite intense.

First, one of the kids were feeling bad. We saw him quiet and alone, but thought was nothing too serious. Suddenly, one of the workers picks him up totally unconscious. Tiago runs and brought him to the kitchen where people started pressing his stomach. Nothing would wake him up and the chef called the priest, who is also our carpenter doing the roof of one of the new dining area.

The kid was in Tiago’s lap and the priest came and started to exorcise him. It was shocking because he was pressing the stomach of the kid so hard that we wouldn’t be surprised if he suddenly wake up. The priest continued exorcising the kid and it came to a point where Tiago honestly believed the kid had the demon in him until Fernanda tells him that he is hurting the kid and that he should stop.

While the exorcism was going on, we were trying to find a cab to take him to the hospital. When Fernanda went to the gate to try to find help she saw that, luckily, the doctor who was supposed to visit us that day had just arrived. She began pressing his chest quite hard and the kid to scream even harder.

There were four of us holding his arms and legs while he screams and the doctor presses his chest. All of the sudden, the kid got up and began to puke. He came back to his senses and the priest was sure that the cause of it was the spirit of the demon (as many of the workers who were there – in fact, one of them had run to Fernanda and said “I think it’s the demon”).

It was really scary as he was completely unconscious and we were the only volunteers there. Lots of thoughts came to our minds, but luckily he was fine and resting.

The doctors

life in Africa

After the big commotion from the morning, the doctor starts doing what they came there to: checking the children. It was a doctor and a counsellor. The doctor was examining them and the counsellor doing the HIV test. For our great sadness, one of the little child from the orphanage was tested HIV positive. It was the only one amongst the 24 tested (22 children and 2 volunteers) but still a very big shocking news. Now we need to take her to start caring treatment straight away. She is not old enough to receive such information. They will disclose it to her in due time.

You might also be interested in: It is all a matter of perspective

After the doctors, we headed to a different place to spend the night and the next day. It was a care centre in the same space of a school in which live disabled children called Saint Francis. They were in need of some help for the day and we went there to volunteer.

St Francis Missiani

life in Africa

St Francis

Well, let’s start with the surrounding area. Although it is only 30 minutes from the orphanage we live, the landscape is much differente. It has a lot more trees and plants and is in a hill. Inside, they have an avocado tree, bananas, pumpkins, mangos, tomatoes, potatoes, sweet potatoes and a lot more. Plus a cow and some chickens. The kids are incredible.

First of all, they are the ones who run the place. They cook, they clean, they wash and they help the ones in most need… The ages are from 8 to 14 but they are really clever. Tiago was playing memory game – very seriously – and was beaten every single time. They all know English very well. They all have good manners and are well-educated. What a lesson we had!

life in Africa

St Francis

The food is not the best and the bedroom was horrible. We could not sleep actually because of the mosquitoes. The toilets were clean within the limits of the meaning of the word, but it might have been still the 30 hours in which we have learned the most during this trip.

life in Africa



We are back to our children’s home now and all this experience made us think we should be giving more responsibility to the kids. Life hasn’t been easy on them, but they are very lucky to be where they are now and they seem happy all the time. We are happy too. Very happy! To have the opportunity to see and learn this all is something we never imagined could happen to us.