Skin Deep

“No, no, in Korea I’m ugly,” she said casually as though describing something as trivial as her hair color or the brand of shoe she was wearing. The statement was shared as though it were fact. In truth, it was fact because no Korean matches the Korean standard of beauty; well, not without a little help anyway.

Korean plastic surgeryKorean culture is obsessed with appearance. Many students within Korean schools keep mirrors either on their person or on their desk in order to monitor their appearance throughout the day. This may seem vapid to the foreign eye but with the cultural frankness of Koreans this is a necessity.

“In Korea, people describe other people as ugly. Its like the first thing they say,” Eunice Kim, a Korean female attending Rosslyn Academy reported.

This frankness fosters the social pressure that Koreans feel to be beautiful and to achieve those five requirements of Korean beauty. Those five things are the S-line, a small face, double eyelids or sang-koh-pul, big eyes, pale skin and a high nose. Any deviation from this standard is seen as ugly. Ugly is unacceptable.

Beauty in Korea is more than aesthetics, it’s a measure of success and conforming to the standards is believed to open economic opportunities. Those who aren’t born with the characteristics of a beautiful Korean often fake it. They often turn to make up or plastic surgery to create false images of “beauty.” It is quite a common practice to use tape to create the appearance of larger eyes or plastic surgery before a job interview. In fact, many schools hand out pamphlets for plastic surgery.

According to a recent study by The International Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons, South Korean plastic surgery 2Korea has the highest cosmetic surgery stats in the world. The most popular procedures are lipoplasty, rhinoplasty, and blepharoplasty. The fastest growing procedure is jaw surgery, in order to achieve a small face, or V-line as it is called. Surgery on the eyelids, however, is still the most popular procedure.

The beauty standard is often attributed to the alleged fixation with Caucasians that Koreans have. “In Korea, people worship white people,” a source stated.

Anna Lee, a Korean woman who has written a thesis on cosmetic surgery in South Korea, would partially agree with this sentiment. She said that “Korean people are fixing their eyes because they are naturally made to believe that it is flawed.” She blames the influence of Western culture for causing Korean women to feel as though they are “inherently flawed.”

The Korean beauty standards sound intense; however, if this article had been about American beauty ideals, it would have been just as strange. Replace the S-line, a small face, double eyelids or sang-koh-pul, big eyes, pale skin and a high nose with large breasts, thin noses and full lips and the situation is the same. Over 5 million women in the U.S. have had breast augmentation surgery and 30% are between the ages of 20 and 29. This shows that society has put women under pressure in many cultures.

– Stanley Kalu

The Kenyan- I(ndian)dependancy

Ever seen or heard of the ethnic race of Indians? It’s kind of hard to miss them, considering they’re just about everywhere. Either draped in the latest gold stitched Sari or pantsuit from Burberry, Indian ladies are setting the trend in Nairobi. Ever wonder how it has amassed to such a huge network? Why there is a more distinctive smell of curry than ever before? As a part of this society, I’ll give you a rare insight into this exclusivity.

Kenyan IndiansLet me paint you a picture: a person is just strolling down the road; they’re whistling or maybe even humming. The sun is shining and the birds are singing, the big blue sky shines, a luminous moon can still be seen setting. Suddenly, a car zooms by. Splash! The white suit which was bought by a loving mother-in-law is ruined. There is a long beeeep, the phone is vibrating, you have just received USD 5,000; USD 5,000, because that is the starting price for a custom made suit. That is when it becomes known that the two parties involved are Indian.

Let’s start at the beginning. All Indians came from India. They slowly migrated, globalizing. There was this one rule that kept the bloodline so brown: NO BMW’S. BMW stands for “black, Muslim, or white”; this was drilled into our heads since we were all little boys and girls learning how to read Gujarati or Hindi. There was the possibility of having friends, but a girl was to find that rich banker boy who had come from a long line of wealthy people, and a boy was to find that pretty wife who could cook and order around servants yet still retain a proper standing in society. If an Indian boy was to have a successful household, his only options were to become an engineer, doctor, or lawyer (or just be plain wealthy).

Indians also eat lots of Badaam(almonds) to help with memorization. I have never been able to understand when somebody says they don’t have much extended family; it baffles me. The word extended family is plainly and simply a conundrum in Indian culture. I eat 5 badaam a day, in hopes that I will not forget that uncle’s name who always pinches my cheeks until they are red and smarting. Ladies and gentlemen, this is one of the most well kept secrets of Indian Society: connectivity.

Indians are brilliant at remembering each other’s names when something is needed. This has kenyan-indians 2especially kept the Kenyan-Indian society so vibrant. “Yaad athi hai? Meri, teri kahaani. Meri Uma aur theri Aba dost bangaya kisi gau me.” (Do you remember? Mine and your story. My grandmother and your grandfather were friends in some village.) Especially in a place like Kenya, Indians tend to stick out. Especially to one another, an Indian cannot walk by without at least 56 other Indians critiquing what they’re wearing, how they’re walking, and what they’re saying.

But what makes Kenyan-Indian society so different from just Indian society? There are many things; for one, Kenyan Indians have a higher tilt to their noses than in India. They have both the culture of the Indians and Kenyans- the stinginess of the Indians combined with the work ethic of Kenyans creates quite the formidable power.

Before I walk out of the house, I ask myself. Is it worth it? Is it worth giving up my converse for heels just because it would be unacceptable to show up to an event in sneakers? Is it worth having to blow-dry my hair perfectly when I can just leave it with its messy waves? It is. My life is full of stars and different moons, all part of this big sense of never-ending galaxy. As judgmental as they are, they will try to help that person first. You may be judged, you for sure will be criticized, but one thing is for certain, you will never be able to forget them.

So the Kenyan Indian’s dependency: they are dependent on one another to make life great, and to create the bright lights and big boom of the fireworks. But be careful, lest you catch on fire.

-Divita Raithatha

Rosslyn Sports

Rosslyn Academy is a wonderful school, but one thing that I particularly love, and that sets Rosslyn apart, is its sports. On my first day of football try-outs I thought that it would be whoever who could kick a ball that would be able to join the team, until Mr. Schwandt said, “All right people, run for 14 minutes and we will see how much you can do.” Now that I’ve been in Rosslyn for almost two years and taken a bunch of sports and fitness classes, 14 minutes isn’t much; but that first day of tryouts was killer. I had jogged for about two minutes and I was literally lying on the grass because I was completely exhausted, until one of the seniors came and helped me up.

Girls-Field-Hockey-47Rosslyn is a school that I have come to really respect because it doesn’t take anything lightly, and sports is no walk over either. Before I came to Rosslyn I thought that sports was a time of fun and joking; also a time to not be in class, but Rosslyn has taught me the value of sports. Rosslyn has taught me that sports are fun, but it is much, much more than just fun. First, sports isn’t an excuse for not taking school seriously, sports is what you do after taking school seriously. Also, when one plays sports, it isn’t time to be silly and joke around. One doesn’t have to be dead serious, but it is a time when one learns what they can and what they can’t do well, and then listen so that one can get better.

My brother came to one of the games and was surprised with the way the game was exciting because of the cheering and the support that the school gave to the team. He also said that the players were helping each other out and playing together in order to achieve the greater goal of winning, rather than selfish play which helps no one.

Emmanuel Balogun, a sophomore, said that he joined Rosslyn sports because he likes to keep Boys-Varsity-Basketball-Feb-4-81active and compete, and also because Rosslyn is “pretty good when it comes to sports.” Balogun stated that his favorite sport is basketball because his teammates and his coach have been able to ignite an interest for the game, more than just keeping active, but the interest that makes one want to work harder and want to become better at the game. Emmanuel also emphasized the importance of the coaches and how they may be a little bit too demanding, but they just want everyone who is participating in their sport to be the best they can and maybe even better.

Rosslyn is a school that spreads the virtues of Christianity wherever they go, even in sports: hard work, diligence, fairness, honesty, and other virtues that are always shown whenever Rosslyn plays.

– Michael Sossy

Hope for Turkana

Imagine yourself in the middle of an arid desert- having had no meal in the past 48 hours.  In the scorching heat, with what is left of your flock, you set out on a several kilometre journey to foreign land, with the hope of finding food and water. The worries of where your next meal will come from, or if you’ll make it across the border constantly loom in your mind; but still, you take the risk.

TurkanaSuch is the current situation in Turkana, Northern Kenya. The area has not received a good amount of rainfall in the past five years, leading to a drought that is proving to be severe. Over 400,000 local residents are affected by this drought, with 90,000 slowly experiencing starvation. Livestock have perished, crops have failed, and wells have gone dry. When they can no longer find anything to eat, they are forced to pick wild fruits from nearby bushes. These need to be boiled for several hours, and are accompanied with dry animal skin that can only stave off hunger for a few hours. Malnutrition levels are alarmingly high, and as a result, children cannot go to school.

With the flick of a tap, we have clean, fresh running water, yet in parts of this very same country people are forced to cross borders in search for water. So far, more than 30,000 pastoralists have crossed over to Uganda in search for food and water, and more are on the move. This has been an evident pattern in the past couple of years, following the 2011 drought that affected the entire horn of Africa. It has come to the point where Turkana residents do not see themselves as Kenyan citizens, but rather as foreigners, or refugees in their own country. Isn’t this a shame?

Does the government not take any interest in Northern Kenya? Is there an explanation as to why Northern Kenya has the lowest literacy levels? Why is nothing done about such hunger crises until the very end? What does the government have to say about the hundreds of lives lost? Questions… questions… all these questions have been posed to the government, but answers and solutions are yet to be come up with.

Relief food programmes are set up year in, year out. Several NGOs, Red Cross and various UN bodies have greatly contributed to relieving this hunger crisis. The government as well, has began food aid intervention in the areas hardest hit by the drought and medical attention is available to those experiencing serious malnutrition. As much as food relief programmes provide for the immediate needs of the people, they do not serve as long-term solutions. In order to curb food insecurity in arid regions, the government needs to make an effort to be more proactive. The fact that famine is a recurring pattern speaks volumes on its own.

The UN World Food Programme is running a food-for-work programme where Turkana turkana-girl_10webresidents help construct water points that could be used for irrigation in exchange for a meal. Residents are guaranteed not only a meal, but knowledge on how to handle resources. Such long-term solutions create sustainability and a more secure future as opposed to relying on perennial food aid. With the large deposits of oil recently discovered in the area, there is hope. Scientists recently discovered two huge aquifers that are said to supply the country with water for up to 70 years. The area is bursting with resources and in the coming years, we can only hope that Turkana will never experience famine again. There is a possibility that the Turkana, formerly known for its famine and poverty, will be a place of no more suffering and dying due to hunger or dehydration. It will be a place with schools, medical facilities, roads and amazing infrastructure. More importantly, that neglect would be a thing of the past and residents of the region would identify themselves as Kenyan citizens once more.

-Stephanie Mithika

Yeeun Lee: The Midfield Phenomenon

Yeeun soccerShe is the star of the A team in girls football and she has constantly been putting in five star displays which have boosted the team’s performance. Yeeun Lee has been integral to the squad and has made a real name for herself. She easily manages to  not only give brilliant performances on the field, but also manages to get good grades and is on top of everything from her school work to sports, as well as her other interests. Here is an exclusive chat with the star player herself.

1) How did you first get interested in football?

I started playing football in middle school. I really enjoyed playing and the sport just kind of stuck on.
2) As each game passes, Girls A Football Team looks unstoppable. What is the secret to your success?
We have such great quality of players, individually, compared to last year. We are playing really well as a team and things are just smoother and easier. The whole team just clicks.

3) Tell us about your practice routines. How do they work?
We usually have the normal drills like, the shooting drills, or we recreate different scenarios that would happen when playing a real game. We occasionally switch it up. If we play badly in one aspect of the game, during the match, we would focus our practice on that the next day.

4) How far do you think your team can go?
We can go very far. The only team in our way is ISK and if we can pull off some strong wins in our future games and against ISK, I am sure we’ll go far. (Ed. Note: Rosslyn defeated ISK 3-0 yesterday)

5) Coming from a line of sisters who were exceptional in sports, did you feel pressure to match them and their ability?
My two older sisters, Koheun and Daeun, weren’t that sporty. Jieun played basketball and therefore, I played football. I knew I couldn’t fill her shoes if I played basketball.

6) For all the younger students, how do you manage to perform at such high levels, and also maintain your grades at the same time?
Honestly, I’m someone who never procrastinates. I always work ahead and I just have good time management skills. And since I’m on top of my school work, sports don’t get in the way.

7) Are you planning on continuing on with your football career in college? Why or Why not?
Probably not. Football isn’t really my focus and I’m not too serious about it. I mean, if a golden opportunity comes up I might take it, but I’m not too serious about it.

8) Who is your inspiration and why?
I don’t have an inspiration just solely for football, but I think Koheun, my oldest sister would be my inspiration. She loves her life, travels the world and has fun! What more can you ask for?

9) Is there a particular player or players you play well with? What gives you guys that “sixth sense”?
I think it would have to be Anastasia. It’s like we don’t even have to talk. We just make eye contact and we both know what our next play is going to be. I think we have this ability because I’ve just played with her for such a long time!

10) Is there a particular game in mind you vividly remember and why?
It has to be the 10-0 win, of course! It’s not just because we won, but it’s because we won with 9 players playing!

11) What are some of your favourite moments while playing football or hanging out with the girls?
Some of my favourite moments would have to be the fun bus rides to and from the school, and winning games! Oh, and also making fun of Min Jeong!

12) Who are the leaders in your team and what makes them such great leaders?
There aren’t any specific leaders, because we are a team. We don’t have a fixed captain so there’s not “one leader”.

13) Are there any superstitious rituals or things you guys do before matches?
We pray before every match and have our classic Rosslyn cheer!

14) Do you like playing in your wing position or would you like to venture out and try other positions?
I’ve played this position for so long that I don’t know how to play another position besides this. It’s not like I don’t like it, it’s just the position I play.

15) As this is your final year of playing Girls Football, what are your dreams for your team this season and what do you expect of the future Rosslyn Girls Football teams?
I really want this team to win this season. I know if we play our best, we have the ability to do it. For next year, I             don’t really care about the next Rosslyn team, because I will be in college.

– Andrew Kumar

Effects of Abortion in Kenya

Prior to 2010, abortions in Kenya were considered illegal unless it was to save the life of the mother. The new constitution provides greater latitude with respect to legal abortions; permitted legally when the pregnancy jeopardizes the life or health of the mother, with health being defined as physical, social and mental.

AbortionThe effects of illegal abortions are significant, resulting in loss of life, and impaired physical and mental health of many women.

An extensive report on the issue of abortion in Kenya showed that in 2012, Kenyan women had about 465,000 abortions, the majority of which were illegal in unsafe conditions. Unsafe abortions cause an estimated 30% of maternal deaths and countless injuries according to one source. Most of the procedures have taken place in unsafe conditions, either outside of medical facilities or without the assistance of trained professionals. As a result, some 120,000 women sought medical treatment for complications from abortions.  According to Dr. John Nyamu, “There were wards in hospitals where women who had unsafe abortions were treated for uterine and bowel damage due to perforations and developed sepsis, brain damage and many women died.”  Young women suffered disproportionately, as 45% of women aged 19 and younger who came to a health facility for post-abortion care, experienced severe complications. The report states Kenya’s national abortion rate, at 48 abortions for every 1,000 women, is higher than almost every other country in Africa. The fear and secrecy surrounding abortions led to unsafe abortions.

Dr. Elizabeth Kimani, with the African Population and Health Research Center, says despite the safety concerns, there is a resistance in Kenya to addressing the problem. “I think there’s still a lot of stigma about reproductive health and about abortion,” she said.

Doctors and health professionals were subject to severe criminal penalties if they were to conduct abortions. Legal abortions could only be conducted at government hospitals such as Kenyatta National Hospital, and required multiple sign offs from doctors. As such legal abortions were few and only in extreme situations.  According to Dr. John Nyamu,  “Most health-care workers were afraid of talking about it openly. Abortion was never performed in government hospitals unless the life of the woman was in real danger.”

Dr. E. Kimani says the research found that 43 percent of pregnancies in Kenya are unintended.  “Because people have unintended pregnancies first, and then they seek abortions. So we actually have to deal with this issue first.” The report concludes that increasing access to contraceptives and other reproductive health services is key to preventing unsafe abortions.

The Kenyan government needs to be a part of the solution as this is becoming a national health issue. Director of Kenya Medical services, Francis Kimani, asked Members of Parliament to allocate resources towards women’s health. “Legislators should ensure necessary resources are allocated to the health sector as a matter of priority and to expand maternity protection for working women,” he said. Members of Parliament need to advocate on behalf of women and children; “Spending on women and children health is an investment not just a cost. Contributing to the wellbeing of families and communities is a key responsibility,” Dr Kimani said.

With the implementation of the new constitution, it is hoped that pregnant women will be able to exercise their reproductive rights. A woman, with her doctor, can decide to have an abortion. The procedure can be performed without fear and the associated stigma. It would be performed in a safe medical environment with the right follow up care, avoiding unnecessary deaths and injuries.  Health care professionals and doctors would be trained in post-abortion treatment procedures and can conduct themselves without fear of repercussion.  Government investment and support in providing education and access to family planning tools and contraceptives will help avoid unintended pregnancies.

– Adam Samji

Being a Pastor’s Kid

Pastors’ kids. They’re the ones you expect to be rebels. The ones who party every weekend, have piercings everywhere and swear like sailors. They’re the ones who go crazy when they get to college because they have finally broken free from their Pastor Parents. They’re expected to be “bad.” And most pastors kids live up to this expectation. Then there’s me.

pastors-kids“You’re a PK?! No way. You’re the only good one I know.” This is often the reaction I get when people learn that I am indeed a pastor’s kid, or a PK as it is more often put.

From what I’ve seen, pastors’ kids are expected to be one of two extremes. They will either be “holier than thou” or be complete rebels. It is true that children who grow up in a Christian home with parents that are active ministers and teachers of the word often feel stifled by the overwhelming presence of the Word. They are expected to know certain passages of the Bible by heart and know the words to all the hymns that are commonly sung in church. Or, they are expected to be the complete opposite—and never set foot in church. Some people actually have a very warped idea of what being the child of a pastor entails.

In reality, it is a bit of both, but not as extreme as people believe it to be. Yes, pastors’ kids may know many Bible verses, or words to the hymns sung in church. But they also can go to parties, have pierced ears and love artists like Drake. Being a pastor’s kid does not mean that we exist in either of two polarized extremes. There are pastors’ kids out there—like me—that are completely normal people, believe it or not.

Pastors do make for stricter parents, this is true. The expectations are higher because the children have “grown up in the word” and have the Bible’s take on right and wrong drilled into them from a very young age. Some pastor parents are stricter than others. The ones who are stricter often have the children that revolt sooner, or go completely bonkers once they are away from their parents. It is like being able to see the cookie jar for your whole life, but never being able to open it. Then one day, you can finally untwist the lid and the cookies are all yours. You’d have your fill, would you not? Exactly. That is what it’s like for pastors’ children.

I do not think that this is a good thing, however, because many young people who have been let PK teeout into the world after existing in a PK bubble their whole lives go overboard and end up ruining their lives. Pastor parents need to figure out a way to balance the influence of both secular and Christian worlds that they let their children have. Without a balance, things become difficult.

For a PK that’s a teenager and a female one no less, like me, everything is doubled. There is the usual teenage pressure that is dealt with at this terrible and wonderful time of our lives—boys, PMS, grades, fashion, peer pressure, those pesky emotions that sneak up on you out of nowhere—and then there’s the parents. The pressure of participating in church activities, understanding the teachings, and living life according to the Bible is enough to make a poor teenage girl insane. So there you have it, my rant on being a Pastors’ Kid.  It’s not all bad though. There are some good things too, like…wait for it; it’ll come to me…

–          Henrika Amoafo

Individuality, Stolen

Imagine going to school and being identified as just another clone to a certain species of high schooler. Imagine being amongst a set of people dressed the same way, walking down the same halls. The same music played over and over in the earphones of fellow friends. Imagine standing in the midst of a crowd whose members looked exactly the same. Welcome to the clique.

clique 2Cliques are continuous system and cycle of inclusion and exclusion where manipulative figures have total control over the remaining members of the cluster. With a system like this, what better way to fit in then become a complete copy of the group? It seems easy enough. With a set of friends with similar interests, it really shouldn’t be hard to fit in. The truth behind this is that there is a great amount of safety in numbers. Being a part of a clique gives insurance to getting through daily school life. But what happens when identity is lost and one is identified by the clique rather than the individual? Individuality is stolen.

The constant pressure to maintain the balance of characteristics of a designated clique can become a burdening chore. Sure there is strength and safety in numbers, but total immersion into a category that has become a body beyond a single being then turns the group into something foreign to its original intentions. Behaviors are eventually altered to accommodate the hodge-podge of personalities of other individuals which can, in turn, modify communication skills in future encounters and model the experiences and the process of learning to relate and interact with others

Exclusivity is a major part of the typical clique’s dynamic. Members who are expelled are quickly replaced to limit the amount of “free space” in the group. By this way of elimination and inclusion, being accepted into the clique shows that you have what it takes. Though this may be the case, it becomes easier for the clique to become a space only of similarity rather a place of friendship; relying on one another for an identity, something that cliques destroy. Unfortunately many of the youth, when joining a clique, feel obligated to stay true to their newer friends rather than maintain relations with their past friends.  This goes to show the manipulative features of the dynamic.

Some cliques promote and support positive activities like partaking in charitable and productive clique1events while other cliques encourage delinquent activities targeted sometimes at individuals oblivious to the scheme. This array of clique behaviors depicts how the whole idea of a supportive crowd of people with common interests has strayed into a form of group branding; acceptable by other cliques thus renewing cycle of subsuming individual identity for that of the group and its members.

Begin imagining everyone as their own personal being. Imagine being amongst characters who may share interests with some but mingle amidst those whose interests may contrast. Standing betwixt a race of multiple attributes each separate from the next in some way. Tackle the issue that is stolen individually and break free from the clique.

– Adel Franklyn

Bash the Body

It can be heard from the locker rooms of boys and girls alike. It’s in the background chatter of the zone and in between classes. It’s echoed in lunchtime conversations and whispered to each other when teacher’s backs are turned. It’s posted on the internet and even sent through text, wallowing in the subconscious: body bashing.

Body bashingBody bashing is the obsession over personal flaws and the constant verbal abuse of those flaws. By carelessly pointing them out to even a close friend-despite their usual attempts to say otherwise- pressure to obtain a more desirable body becomes inevitable. So why is it ok to beat down on personal flaws with friends? Well, compliments are often fed  back during verbal self-abuse, which is what is really craved. According to high school student Mya Effiong, bashing makes you “feel as if you need to wait for a compliment” subconsciously, and “you urge them to compliment you.” Though these compliments build self-esteem, the process of body bashing takes away from its benefit. It’s just not worth it.

Body bashing is more common in the teenage generation of the current century. Due to rapid development in the media and sites like instagram and tumblr, specific body images are displayed. These images create the stencil from which many of the youth try to imitate. So if body bashing can expose flaws, obtaining a more desirable figure becomes an easier task to tackle.

Wrong. It becomes the basis by which many disorders can develop. Anxiety disorders as well as anorexia, bulimia and self-starvation are potential side effects to the addictive activity that is body bashing. “I hadn’t thought about being healthy, just skinny,” admits high school sophomore Rediet, who now knows that “trying to be healthy is great but body bashing doesn’t help.”

This addicting and infectious but vicious group activity can even evolve into a competitive hobby where teenagers Body bashing 2point out more of their own issues than their opponent before anyone else can comment, while simultaneously receiving the occasional “No way,” and “you’re perfect!” Still, though the awareness of body bashing has increased over the last few years, the event in itself has done the same, especially in young females. “Girls typically feel more of a need to be adored; guys just want to be respected, “explains sixteen year old, Jon-Michael. It has become more evident that stress to attain a thin figure fit with thigh gaps and tight abs becomes a burden.

When asked how they felt about bashing, Mya, Jon-Michael and Rediet replied by expressing how, to them, the continuous search for compliments can become annoying and that it attracts the wrong kind of attention in the wrong way. Their goals are to spread the awareness of bashing and discourage it all while encouraging their peers to appreciate and love their bodies despite social media’s unrealistic and bias standards. So when “stress turns into an obsession,” as Mya puts it, it’s an indication that risks of health issues are higher. Continuously seeing only the imperfections can eventually alter the mind to see just that, rather than true beauty.

– Adel Franklyn

Rosslyn Kenyan Staff

“Christian. Peaceful. Cooperative.”

These are the words used to describe Rosslyn Academy by the workers who all seem to be very happy with their job. Rosslyn Academy is a Christian school, so one expects there to be certain kinds of behaviour, like treating people with kindness. Evans Magucha, one of the workers at Rosslyn, said that the students at Rosslyn are more than that: “They are very friendly, as well as respectful of the work we do. Also, the students are cooperative and do as they are asked.”

Kenyan Culture Class Tree Planting-28Yes, Rosslyn Academy is a Christian school, but the staff workers have emphasized how Rosslyn is more than that. Christian is more than a name to Rosslyn; it is how the school is. The students and teachers have true Christian values and are almost always kind, respectful and understanding.

Rosslyn doesn’t rush their workers or force them to do certain tasks at specific times; Rosslyn has an administration that believes in self-management and that if people are given tasks to do, they can complete them using their own schedule and abilities. “We work well together,” is what Evans said about his co-workers and himself. Everyone is responsible enough to do their own work, which makes it easier to manage oneself and all the work in general.

“Work shifts and the schedule is manageable if one plans well and does their work in time,” said Geoffrey, another one of the Rosslyn workers. The workload is not too much, it is just enough for each day, especially if one plans their time and works efficiently. Some of the workers come to school as early as 6:00am to clean up the zone and other places for us, while other shifts start at 9:00am; there are different jobs and each job has certain time requirements.

Rosslyn has different branches of the staff workers, like security guards, grounds men and gardeners. All these people do different jobs to make sure that our school is clean, our campus is beautiful, and that our equipment and our fields/courts are in good condition and ready to be used.

“Developing and growing rapidly” is what Amos Mbithi said when I asked him what he thought of Rosslyn, a place that is always looking to become better modern and even more advanced. The staff workers don’t just help the school by coming and doing their jobs, but they are also involved in what is happening in the school just as much as we are.

Most people may not notice the workers who come every day to help not only the school, but us, the student body, to learn better and even be more comfortable as we do whatever we are doing, so when you see a staff worker just appreciate them for all they do for us.

– Michael Sossy