Kenya's Long Road to Recovery

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The peace talks in Kenya have hit a snag. The main opposition leader has suddenly left the country during the most critical day of the negotiations.

No one seems to know why Raila Odinga chose today to make a quick trip to Nigeria.

Kenya exploded in tribal violence about two months ago following the latest presidential election. Odinga lost and claimed the election had been "stolen" from him.

About a thousand people were killed in the post-election violence.

While the peace deal looks promising, experts say Kenya will have a long road of healing ahead.

Ashes to Ashes…

At a cemetery in Nairobi, a two and a half year old girl named Mary is being laid to rest.

She is a victim of the violence that is sweeping Kenya and sending the nation into turmoil.

When violent mobs from a rival tribe swept through her neighborhood, the toddler's mother was forced to flee for her life.

In her haste she could only grab her youngest child. When she returned to her shack she found Mary murdered in her bed.

The violence has driven many people, like Mary's mother, from their homes as they sought safety in numbers. Others had their homes destroyed.

The victims converged in the bigger cities, sheltering in stadiums, police stations, and churches.

Some camps are still full of children; some have been separated from their families; some will never see their families again.

Despite the horrific conditions, these people are the fortunate ones who were able to escape with some of their belongings.

Operation Blessing Steps In

Operation blessing is in Kenya serving victims in the remote countryside area. These people have lost everything. They can't even afford to run from the danger.

With crops and livelihoods destroyed, food is a priority need for the victims.

Operation blessing plans to provide food for thousands of people for two months.

O-b is also working with the German relief group Humedica to provide desperately needed medical services.

With so much deep rooted division in Kenya, operation blessing has teamed up with a Danish organization called International Aid Services to bring counseling.

The program is being run through local churches.

"Counseling really helped kenya to help recover from crisis, because many people have gone through traumatic situation. They have seen people being killed. They have experienced, maybe children have seen their parents killed," trauma counselor Ann Mbuga said.

Teams of Christian counselors are listening to the often horrific stories of the victims and offering hope in return through a biblical based counseling scheme.

"The church has to be equipped with the tools for trauma counseling to really bring healing to this nation. Otherwise we're going to see it fall apart, because the bitterness, the hurt is so deep," Anders Jakobsen, and IAS Denmark coordinator, said.

Kenya will need a long time to recover.

In the meantime operation blessing is ministering to the victims of this crisis, so the church can take the lead in helping Kenya and little Mary's family heal.

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CBN News
Dale Hurd and Sarah Pollak

Dale Hurd and Sarah Pollak

CBN News

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